The Longest Yard

Imagine you are standing at the base of a mountain, with your climbing gear on, looking up. The top is shrouded in clouds. That’s how I feel as I consider the mammoth undertaking of getting a yard installed.

For several weeks I’ve been trying to plan what needs to be done, in what order, and I’m running out of ways to pretend I am being productive without actually doing anything.

So we have been trying to plan out what we will do. Katie and I love grass, so we never planned anything very ambitious. Frankly, a lot of people seem to try cramming too much stuff into their yard, leaving it looking cluttered. And as our previous landlord can attest to, we are not cut out to take care of a lot of garden area anyway. So the plan is to plant grass everywhere and have one small flower bed in front of the porch, and a couple of trees. We are also going to add a concrete patio in the backyard. So the to-do list looks something like this:

1. Till the soil to loosen it up. (We have already tried this, to little effect due to mechanical problems. I will be renting another one and giving it another shot. Our soil is really hard.)
2. Have a soil analysis done to see what we need to do for a healthy lawn. (I’m waiting for the results. It seems a bit excessive, maybe, but it was a good suggestion by my dad. We do want things to last.) Then we need to add organic matter, or whatever they recommend, and till that into the soil.
3. Pour the concrete patio, and curbing for the flower bed in front.
4. Plan the sprinkler system (I do have the plan, courtesy of a local sprinkler supply store.)
5. Install the sprinklers. This involves renting a trencher and laying all the pipes and all that good stuff.
6. Create a final grade for the lawn, which means raking it until it is all smooth, draining away from the house.
7. Lay the sod and get it established, and then get a lawn mower.

Yeah, climbing the huge mountain seems a lot easier.