progress on the backyard grass

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Houston, we have grass!

slow progress on the back yard

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It’s been kind of a slow process, but thanks to some help from a cute guy I know (is it a thing that guys want to take on grass-growing projects or something?? My friends and I had a frank discussion about it the other day, and they were all chiming in with their husbands and SO’s about how the guys took on the grass-growing and fertilizing tasks), I have a lot more green growing in the yard. Well, thanks to him, an efficient timer, and the sprinkler system he set up.

Solid truth: if you’re a lazy grower like I am, you need to have something that waters the yard for you. New grass is a needy baby, and I am not a diligent enough DIYer to do this as often as needed.

sprinkler system for grass in the back yard

You might recall that less than two months ago, it still largely looked like the giant dirt pile that it was when I first filled in the deeper spots and evened out the most difficult areas with a backhoe (click for parts 1, 2, and 3 of that saga). I hired some help for prepping the dirt and spreading new seed, but the results were very disappointing. There were lots of factors considered (Charlie, the weather, foot traffic, birds eating the seed, etc.), but it wasn’t until I started using a sprinkler system that I realized that I was probably the biggest contributor to its first failure.

backyard grass before

In a recent storm, a piece of my neighbor’s fence (the one you see above and below) was uprooted from a dead tree, which pretty much created a giant hole directly on the other side of my fence line. After all of the work I’ve done on this yard, the last thing I want to happen is for it to be ruined through erosion that I can’t do much about (since it’s also not on my property where the water is draining). So, keeping the dirt in the yard via plant roots and a thick layer of grass became even more important. The first step was putting in the new hedge, but the other was growing grass asap. Basically: if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again… and put in a better watering system. It soon became very obvious where I’m getting too much water, and where the sprinkler is missing its target.

grass growing across the back yard

Granted, it may not completely prevent erosion long-term (and I have a dog), but doing everything I can now is for the best. Some of the new growth has been a quick-grow rye seed (that will eventually die off after a season or two), but it allows time for the fescue to grow in. For several weeks, I kept all dogs away and limited foot traffic to prevent undoing most of the progress, but I’m about to hit the first milestone: the first mowing. Woo hoo!

corner of the backyard for the future new shed

I’ll have many more seasons of applications, weeding, etc. before it’s a nice, thick lawn like my landscaper-neighbor has in his yard, but I’m one (much greener) step closer! And to be honest, I am really grateful that I got to keep my hands off of this project while I was busy working on the others (that I’m revealing in just a week or two… stay tuned!).

before and progress on the back yard

(P.S. My happy, furry blur-ball approves.)

Charlie is a happy blur

What have you been working on lately?

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  1. Good job greening that space up so fast! At our home we have a spot in the backyard that gets shaded from a huge live oak tree, and we have never been able to get anything green growing there. Did you use any fertilizer or anything like that? I’ve almost given up on our spot, and I think the previous homeowner might have sprayed some really nasty stuff there. Maybe I’ll try fertilizer and get a truckload of topsoil next year. Thanks for sharing your story!

  2. Good Job done the grass grows up very quickly and looks very beautiful but add some flowers or other types of plants like mangoes apples with theses thing your place looks more beautiful