First off, I am all about paying a professional when it makes sense for a project.
For this project we knew we could do a lot of the work. But we also didn’t want to pay a chiropractor to fix our backs for the next 6 months b/c we bit off more than we could
So here is how we saved our backs and our wallets.
#1. Paid a grader to come remove all the old over-grown shrubs, fix any issues with water drainage and overall smooth out the yard. He literally popped the old shrubs out of the dirt in 3 seconds including the root system. That alone would have been a whole weekend project for the two of us. $150
#2. Shopped at a local nursery. I took two trips to the nursery. The first trip I looked at prices, variety, height and watering needs of the plants I liked then went home and figured out a game plan. On the second trip to the nursery, we bought all the plants.
In some cases shopping locally saved us $20 per plant compared to the big box stores. And when you are buying 25+ plants that adds up FAST. We used Lichtenfelt Nursery. Our local nursery also gives out a loyalty card that saved us another 5%.
#3. Paid a landscaper to dig the holes for each new 3 gallon-sized plant. This was another HUGE time and body saver. It takes literally seconds with the right equipment. Digging and aerating those huge holes would have taken us HOURS. It only cost us $155 for 20 holes to be dug.
#4. Laid our own ground cloth and staples to prep for the flower beds.
#5. Purchased mulch in bulk from a local supplier ($70) and spread it ourselves.
After grading and purchasing new plants.
Paid a landscaper to dig holes where we had marked.
Once the holes were ready we mixed in mushroom compost and top soil and then placed the plants in the ground.
Now we just have to wait for all the grass to grow.
But in the meantime it looks like we are feeding cattle in our front yard.
We will be watering ALL summer to keep our plants and grass alive.
Hope this inspires you to go dig in the dirt.
We are still in getting-our-house-ready-to-sell mode.
Lots of little projects still left to do…
Before and after exterior:
Read about the whole front porch project by clicking here.