New Landscape for an Elevated House


FINAL STEPS TO COMPLETION

The house project finally completed, the only thing left to do is fill in the landscape. As the former landscape was completely destroyed during the process, we were starting with a clean slate. Prior to the lift, we moved all of the foundation landscaping to our backyard in order to protect it. Most of it survived and will be replanted, providing one of the few areas where we saved some time and money.

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The front yard prior to adding new landscape is looking pretty grim. One of the benefits to a petite front yard is the fix is efficient and economical. The white picket fence had to be temporarily removed during the lift and the rock bed shown above at the base of the front steps was also a recent addition.

The picture below show our side yard. The space is narrow requiring the right plants to make this space shine. Note the air handlers in the background, elevated sufficiently to protect them from any future flooding. Next to the foundation we’ve re-planted some rhododendrons that will grow to fill in the space. Finally, we detailed the space with a lined planting bed and brick walkway.

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AFTER 

A few trips to some local nursery’s, viewing of other lifted homes, and a bit of research on the web and we made our decisions. The new height of the house creates an interesting visual. With some clever landscaping to off-set the newly created height differential, the property will be looking great in no time. 

Sod was an easy call as it goes in so fast and we only needed to cover a small area.

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New sod being rolled into place

THE VERY NEXT DAY …

A storm whipped into town dropping a lot of rainfall. At first it was welcomed as a huge boost to our new sod, which needs to be watered – a lot – in the first few weeks. Mother nature came at just the right time.

But the rain continued. It rained and rained. Flood warnings were issued. We sat snug in our newly lifted house. But our new sod did not fare so well …

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The sod was strew about due to minor flooding
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The high water mark for this flash flood is marked above on our front fence. 

The homes across the street suffered minor basement flooding, but the water never reached our house, just the front yard. Mere months after completing our house elevation project and I feel like it’s already paying off. Historically, calls for heavy rain followed with flood warnings would have ruined my day.

It would have required a call to action involving moving all the items from our lowest floors, moving our cars to higher ground, and grumping around the house wondering how many more times I was going to have to deal with this frustration. No more! Move the cars and done. 

LANDSCAPING COMPLETED

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A few months later and our yard was complete. We went with one of my favorites, Endless Summer Hydrangeas. They bloom from late spring all the way through the summer in big mophead clusters. They grow big and wide, creating a beautiful border all along our front fence. 

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In the photo above note how the red maple plays off the red hue of the rocks; it’s height helps to  off-set the tall foundation. A cypress was added to the planting bed in the stair design to provide year round interest. In the foreground sits another one of my favorites, ornamental grass. Lining our fence on this side yard is a row of arborvitae. What do all of these plants have in common? Low maintenance.

Thoughts?

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