Monday, November 11, 2013

My garden zipper is down

I had a low stone wall built down to delineate my yard from my neighbors. I think it looks like a zipper. Really it's more like a demilitarized zone blocking my invasives - ivy, gooseneck loosetrife chameleon plant, and Japanese lanterns from taking over my neighbor's very nice lawn. They're very nice neighbors. I'd hate to ruin their yard too.

My plan, once spring rolls around, is to possibly take out every third center brick and plant some hardy succulents - hens & chicks and sedums and the like. I also have a bit of reconfiguring of the brick path I had laid down years ago. Then it's figuring what to plant along the little wall to incorporate it into the rest of the garden.


I had a landscaper do this for me. I could have done it, but the thought of doing it the correct way – dug deep enough, old tree roots to deal with, deep enough bed of gravel and sand, lifting heavy stone – was just daunting considering everything else I had to get done work-wise and other projects in the yard at that time.

I went with the suggestion of the company that provided the stone - Experienced Bricks. They sell a variety of ever-changing inventory of reclaimed bricks, cobblestones, pavers, curbing and more. They salvage stone and brick from projects all over the northeast. If you're looking for a unique product for a project that will instantly give a project a patina of time, you should really consider them.

Anyway, they recommended Allentown Landscape. They're a full-service landscape firm, but they are more than willing to take on small-scale projects like mine. Of course, when I say they, I really mean Max Stephan – owner and laborer. 

Larger projects would require more hands-on help, but for Max, this was basically a weekend project he did on his own. One of his most notable and recognizable projects is the front gardens at The Mansion on Delaware Avenue. It's a AAA four-diamond award-winning historic boutique hotel with exquisite serve and amenities. And a pretty nice front garden Max made for them. They're also on Garden Walk Buffalo each year.

Max tells me these stones were used as ship ballast, back when ships needed stones for ballast, and later used to pave roads in New York State's Hudson Valley. So it makes a great story, even if there is no proof of provenience – other than I ended up these ruggedly handsome stones that DID come from the Hudson Valley.
Before.
After.
During.
Done.

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