My timing is actually perfect for today’s garden tour because exactly one year ago, I shared our side yard garden DIY with you! When we moved in, we had this odd side yard that was overgrown, housed our HVAC units, and was just a non functioning eyesore. Emmett & I love spending time outside and we always try to use every inch of our outdoor space. The side yard felt like such a missed opportunity. We decided to tackle a little makeover and turn the space into our garden area. We installed a raised bed, relocated the overgrown plants, put down marble chips, fenced the HVAC units, and turned it into an area for potted plants, vegetables, and herbs. Last year, we tried to tackle the space on a major budget and I used planters that were left behind by the previous homeowners, but this year I was able to curate a more cohesive collection- to better execute what I had initially envisioned. Want to see how things are looking this year? Click through for the tour!
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While it’s far from secret, I think our garden is a fun little surprise or discovery when you walk around the side of our house. It’s definitely tucked away… it isn’t visible from our patio, outdoor dining area, or front yard.
This outdoor area really feels like my own. While Emmett sometimes helps with the garden and plants, I always call it “my garden” and he agrees or asks if I’d like him to water “my plants”. I grew up on a farm and gardening & planting is something I’ve been doing my entire life… it’s really nostalgic and fun for me. I enjoy growing veggies we can eat, canning fresh salsa, and eating berries straight from the vine. It’s not the giant garden we used to have, but it’s a seasonal activity I always look forward to, despite the amount of work that goes into it.
This year we have some tomato plants of a few different varieties, zucchini, eggplant, berries, and plenty of herbs. I also planted some flowers and citronella to keep the bugs away… basically, a few things we like to eat and some plants I enjoy looking at.
I retired my rusty old tomato cages for an updated trellis that everyone seems to be liking, based on the amount of messages I’ve received about them. They really are beautiful!
I think they’re meant for vines or flowering plants, but I’m using them for tomatoes this year. I really like the look of the finial at the point!
To keep things consistent in our potted garden, I decided to stick with terracotta planters (catch my favorites in this post). They’re a mix of new, old, and vintage. Given the varying shapes and sizes, the consistent color palette makes it feel more cohesive and less chaotic. This is more of what I had envisioned for our garden… I just didn’t have the time or budget to collect planters last year.
I had already purchased my coveted garden bench (from this post I shared), but when Serena & Lily reached out to ask if I’d like to work together again to share a finishing touch for a project that had been on my to-do list… I knew the bench was a perfect fit (that I was planning to share anyway). Talk about perfect timing. I feel like it was really the missing puzzle piece in our side yard garden.
With just plants, the side yard is clean and functional, but as a designer- I love including pieces you can really live with. Those little moments that feel special, romantic, and really make me fall more in love with my home and our living space- whether it be indoors or out… that’s what design is all about! The bench really does that for me. Instead of just working in the garden and it feeling like the occasional chore, it’s now a place I can also relax. An aperol spritz in the garden? I feel like that is a definite yes from me! Taking a moment to sit with a book, drink a cup of coffee, and listen to the birds? It just feels right having a place to sit and enjoy the space that you spend a lot of time on.
I will say- having a garden makes homemade pizza nights so much more fun! There is something really wonderful about snipping your own basil from the plant, picking vine ripened tomatoes, and grabbing a bunch of parsley or oregano for a pizza. I’ll admit, during the winter months our pizza nights consisted of mostly carryout, but once spring & summer rolls around- we always get back into our homemade routine. It’s fun having a weekend ritual!
If you’ve been following for awhile now, you know I’m a details person. It’s the scalloped edges on a planter, the piped detail on the bench cushions, and a fancy-looking obelisk garden trellis that really makes my heart sing. It goes to show that doing projects in phases is worth the wait. Last year we created a great foundation for this space that can keep evolving with us. This year, our garden looks more like I had initially pictured in my mind last year, but it’s equally as functional.
My little herb garden stand and planters are still going strong! The stand stayed outside all winter and definitely has weathered, but I don’t mind the look… it’s still functioning nicely. I need to get the rest of my herbs planted- it’s looking a bit unorganized right now.
This year, I’m feeling quite pleased with our little makeshift garden. It’s definitely a bright, cheerful spot tucked into the side of our colonial home, and I’ve really enjoyed spending time back here. I’m looking forward to watching my plants grow, eating some delicious produce this summer, and taking some much-needed time to just sit, relax, and take it all in.
I’d love to hear your thoughts! Do you have a garden? Are you a plant person? How about a side yard… what’s that situation like at your house? If you’d like any sources, just let me know and I can point you in the correct direction. I hope your week is off to a fantastic start. Here’s to tackling your favorite spring projects and activities in the coming weeks.