"We felt the earth move under our Feet" -- Sunday, 4/21

I adhere to the notion that anything worth doing is worth overdoing!  Hence, below are many photos of the yard work we had done on Sunday.  Before and After.  Front yard and Back yard.  Lots of pictures.  Be grateful these are all I did use!

When Earthworks stood us up the previous Monday, Jimmy thumbed thru the Yellow Pages looking for a replacement.  One call led to another, and on Saturday, Carlos came to see the work we wanted done.  He said, "No problem.  We can do it."  We asked him how soon.  "Tomorrow?" he inquired.

"Yes!" we replied.  He and his two helper-workers showed up Sunday morning at 7:30, and tore into the invasives:  St Johns Wort, Vinca Periwinkle, Ivy.  Oh, and hidden logs 'n stumps.  They uncovered quite a few!

The Front Yard:

Jimmy in front of the garage.  The foliage in this area of our front yard is out-of-control and we have no idea what all is under it.

Same area; different view.  We knew one stump was hidden beneath that big hump, but what else?

Five stumps!  And lots of log sections... all of it grossly intertwined with ivy and St Johns Wort.

This pic shows their trailer half full.  By the time these guys were finished, the trailer was bulging!

Looks a little different, eh?  Two stumps were removed.  These others were too big to tackle, and the trailer was overflowing by this time.  Carlos will return!

The Back Yard:

1.  Very green.  Impossible to use.  Notice stump.

Vinca periwinkle - pretty flowers.  Stay back:  VERY AGGRESSIVE.

We had no idea where to begin.  This stuff is impossible to contain or control.

Again, we were unsure what was under the greenery.  Our neighbor, Fran, looked at this mess the other day and said it looked like it had grown exponentially in a week.

I didn't like standing in the St Johns Wort.  Spiders hide in it.

2.  Our heroes arrive!  And they set right to it.  Notice the stump is uncovered.

Carlos staggers to dump this load in the trailer just out of the picture.
He looks like an animated Christmas tree.

Hard work.  We didn't want heavy machinery back here because of our septic tank field lines.

Uh-huh.  Another uprooted stump is uncovered, with blackberry vines,
St Johns Wort and Vinca all tangled in the root system.

Many hours later, and roto-tilled, doesn't this look fine?
Looks like good garden-growing soil.

3.  They got that uprooted stump on the right out of the ground and will take it away when they return.  We now have a back yard.  The work isn't quite finished, but at least we can see the ground!  Again, compare stump on left to photos 1 and 2.

Well, that's our Sunday story.  The guys worked steadily almost eight hours.  (Fran and Anson - who live across the street - came over in the midst of the work and asked Carlos about taking down some sketchy oak trees in their yard.  He said yes.  Win-win.)  We're very pleased with the work done and are soooo glad we didn't attempt to do it ourselves.  Ha ha, that's actually funny.  Imagine us mauling those stumps out of the yard!  Or me hauling St Johns Wort on my back, like Carlos, with spiders crawling down my shoulders.  Ugh!  No way!

Next up:  Carlos is going to install a seven-foot, deer-proof fence around the back yard.  Let the deer devour somebody else's flowers and veggies and dogwood leaves with their sweet little deer lips.  No hurry on this, tho, we still have plenty of work to do. 

BTW, me and Jimmy really enjoyed soaking our aching muscles in our new hot tub after the workers left!


  1. Yeowsirs. Yeowl got a bigger back yard than I thought. Sorry to see all the nice wildflowers replaced by dirt. Can't have a garden if you're never home. Whatcha gonna do?

    1. Don't worry, Rob, we still have plenty of nice wildflowers! RE the garden - to be continued....

  2. I loved (!) seeing this. Just yesterday I walked around our (thankfully small) yard making mental notes of all the ivy to be pulled, a tree to be removed, other shrubs to be removed or pruned. Our work (done by gardeners) starts May 2. You inspired me to take some "before" photos this week.

    I can picture your yard so well! Now all you need to do is pruner patrol DAILY. That Vinca is plotting an overthrow while you sleep.

  3. Reminds me of my time in Sonora a few years ago. A tiny yard in a mobile home park and yet I spent a ton of time trying to keep it all pruned and cleaned up. Stuff really really grows! in the Mother Lode.


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