This is what our home in Channel Islands Harbor looked like when we first bought it four years ago. Not much in the way of curb appeal. Look at those roof lines! Ugh. Eventually we plan to change the front facade to look like a European industrial barn. Unfortunately you'll have to wait a couple of years to see that!
When we bought our home, the first thing I did was paint the house white. Although I disliked the pointy brick planters, they had to stay for awhile.
Since the house facade is mostly a garage door, I needed to make it look a little prettier...
At first I just did a couple cosmetic changes to this area. I added the shutters and a few topiaries next to the door and hung the pots on the wall. I painted the door a blue gray to lighten things up a bit.
That is how our home has looked for the past four years. Until now. As I mentioned in a previous post, I wanted to replace this walkway and create a courtyard. It was also time to replace those sharp brick planters. Here is the design that Steve and I came up with....
This part is always a bit scary! Looks like a mess.
I wanted a gravel driveway, but we needed to make sure that all of the gravel didn't end up in the street. We were able to apply an epoxy directly on our old cement driveway to stabilize the gravel.
It only took a couple of hours to do the whole driveway.
This is how it looked at the end of the day.
Thyme will spill over and soften the concrete walls.
Say good-bye to the narrow pathway...
Since the Birch tree was higher than the rest of this area, we put a little wall in front of the tree. We also added some glass doors in front of the solid wood door...
so we can enjoy looking at the courtyard without losing a pup!
We leveled out the grade and planted a hedge to create the courtyard.
I bought a big rustic planter to use as a fountain.
Come on in and see how it looks so far!
Leila liked this little table and chairs by the fountain, but I think this space needs a little softer seating. It seems like this will be the place to relax and read a book. Pots still need filling. I imagine huge hydrangeas in the pot behind Miss L.
I went to the local Green Thumb and filled my car with greenery.
I filled planters with succulents...
We planted a variety of succulents around the Birch tree in the new courtyard.
I moved the table and chairs in front of the shutters. I think I need to hang something on the shutters. Options: a mirror and some pots or what do you think about hanging a bird house on the shutters? The wall needs some Bower vines growing on it. As much as I love the gravel, the space needs more green.
It's definitely moving along, but it needs a little more of this. This is one of my inspirational images from Rue de Lillie in Summerland. I really think a big bird cage is the way to go. We also need more vines!
And then there is the side of the house...
The big shutters will be a focal point that sits across from the glass door of my powder room. Hydrangeas, Little Ollies, ground covers and a few succulents will line the meandering gravel pathway. I still need to plant the vines that will grow on the walls.
So we went from this...
to this. I know we still have a way to go before it feels complete to me, but it is definitely an improvement!
I'd love to hear what you think of my garden so far. Suggestions?