Around the house

After our fire from a lightening strike July 28, 2002, we decided to move the house 40' north of where the old house stood and to make it one story rather than two. This left a fairly large front yard and we were able to save a lot of the trees that we had planted over the previous 32 years and our old garage.

Here is what you see when you drive up to our house:

This is a large maple tree that survived the fire, a ground covering of aegopodium beneath it and a mock orange above it, this is to the left of our front driveway.

the lattice fence and the trees we were able to save
in the front yard maintained our privacy.
The lawn here is where the original house once stood, we were so fortunate to save the trees in this area, two of our first trails wind through the trees along the front yard, one going deep through the evergreens and another just a lawn path around the center bed of flowers, shrubs and trees. The house sits just about 150 feet back from the road, but the garage is up closer to the road so we don't have a long driveway to plow.
We built a little mudroom, sunporch on the front of the house with plexiglass. We have baby dwarf fruit trees, roses, perennial flowers and ground covers and vines all the way around our house in the beds, these photos were taken in June of this year, when the roses were just starting to come into bloom on the trellises.
These grape vines are more than 100 years old, probably concord grapes planted when the originial house was built,. They are now covering a metal gazebo, there was a wooden gazebo here that was destroyed in the housefire. Inside the gazebo under the shade of the grapes are a couple of lichen covered wooden and metal benches and a table. This was a good year for grapes, they are hanging heavy inside and nearly ready to pick.
In August we moved the greenhouse from behind our house to this spot on the East side of our house. The small building is a wood furnace building where we have a wood boiler that heats our house and our son's house to our east, there is also a woodshed and a toolshed attached to the buildinig and a deck with covered enclosed porch area on the rear and a deck on the front off of our side door. The greenhouse has since been planted with a fall garden that is up and growing now (Sept 2010). Visible in the last photo are 3 dwarf pear trees that are growing in the bed on the east side of our house.
Here are a couple views of the gardens on the North side of our house, the first there is a
boardwalk with an arch going over with climbing roses and sweet autumn clematis. Under two dwarf cherry trees are some dwarf barberries, spireas, hydrangeas and other shrubs and perennials.
Blue globe thistles against a purple leaf smoke bush in our rear drainfield garden (we had fill brought in from our field to bank the drainfield and then we planted the banks with perennials and ornamental grasses and dwarf apple trees). There are also some shrubs such as lilac, honeysuckle, barberry, plum and cotinus all around the drainfield with a circular center lawn. At the north end of the drainfield is a rustic arbor and then north of that is a deck with steps going down under an old self seeded apple tree. Under the apple tree are hostas and ferns and other perennials. Then there is another toolshed that was made from 7' long salvaged pallets.Not really visible in thie photograph but there is
a pond just beyond the bank down the hill past this arbor. There are 3 trails going through the gardens, two on the south side of the garden and one on the north, they connect to a lawn on each side at the lower level, so you look up on the garden from below. There is also a wooden boardwalk that goes through the shaded garden just behind the house and around the west end of the house. Just beyond this arbor is also a deck with steps that go down under an overarching self seeded apple tree and some shady benches.

These photos show back down on the lower level by the toolshed north of the gardens around the drainfield, and the last photo shows the baby food forest garden beyond, and then the woods. To the far right not in the photo is a large pond that we are in the process of redigging. I'll post a page on the pond as we continue to work on it. And to the east of that is a large open field that has been getting overtaken with baby evergreen trees, which we have a road through to the road that borders it on the far east. We hope to allow a lot of trees to grow up and reclaim this field also as a woods area. Our son lived to our East and we sold the house to our West (yellow siding) to a lovely family from Detroit area.