Ivy House Yard Transformation

I still love to see the transformation that we made in the yard at the Ivy House.  When we first bought the house, it felt very dark and heavy.  The ivy against the dark brick and the unruly plants around the yard surrounding the old wood fence did not give the most welcoming first impression.

It is amazing what a weekend of yardwork can do to transform a yard. 


The garage in the backyard before:

The garage was completely covered in ivy when we moved in!

Even on a rainy day, I feel like this garage looks 10x brighter than the ivy wall before!

The ivy was removed to avoid further damage to the grout

Our plan for the side of the garage was to create a potty spot for the pups and add more grass.

Before we added sod and created a puppy potty space

Here is how it looked once we cleared away the brush

Weeding the gravel made a huge difference

Backyard image when we first moved in with overgrowth everywhere

And here is backyard after it was graded, a retaining wall was added and sod laid.  I love the look of fresh grass in a yard!  Chris rebuilt the back fence to open up and allow entry into the yard for dumpsters and any other big drop offs.  We r-epurposed the old fence that was torn out and made a barrier to the dogs potty area with the rocks and had a small entrance for the dogs to enter (not shown).

Backyard once we cleared up the weeds, graded the yard and put in new sod

Backyard once we cleared up the weeds, graded the yard and put in new sod

The structure on the other side of the house HAD to go.  Not only was it a fire hazard (it was connected to the house), but the grape vines were bad for the dogs, it was infested with earwigs and Chris knocked it down with one push. We ended up used this cement pad for the grill.

Old pergola that was falling apart

What remained after the pergola was removed


Weathered fence, overgrown yard and unwelcoming entrance

While I love the transformation of this house, the grass in some of these photos makes me cringe.  When we put an offer on our second home, we weren't really even looking.  We put an offer on the house on a Monday and had to get the Ivy House ready for the open house by that weekend, so the grass was not adequetly prepped.

Weathered fence, overgrown yard and unwelcoming entrance

I loved our front porch.  We painted the door a bright red color, swapped out the address with a formal plaque and added furniture and fresh flowers.  

Bright red door, fresh flowers and welcoming seating areas

Bright red door, fresh flowers and welcoming seating areas

Yard crew

The picture below shows the front of the house once the ivy was removed.  It also shows the fence before it was finished being painted and the over growth in front of the house.  Luckily I have very generous and talented in-laws who came out to help with the landscaping.  I also have to give a shout out to Clare who was with me after work many nights painting the fence white!

Painting the weathered picket fence a crisp white

 I mean, who doesn't like a white picket fence?!  I love how the white fence looks with the landscaping in the front, so clean and crisp.

Bright new picket fence with structured garden

Bright new picket fence with structured garden

White picket fence with cleaned out flower bed

In the front we wanted to define the beds more clearly.

Overgrown flower beds

Mid-yard transformation planting the flowers

Newly defined flower beds

The neighbors old pink fence

Front flower bed

Freshly planted front flower bed

The neighbors pink fence was such an eyesore so we planted a bunch of arborvitae to try and hide it a bit.

A row of trees to camouflage the pink fence

Thanks for checking out the yard reno at the Ivy House!  I found this picture of us with our first babies, Lucy and Lizzy, and had to add it...we were so young! 

The Mahoney's on Meade Street

Check back next Thursday when I reveal the back porch and patio!