Adding the Adjacent Lot to the Property

My Front Yard

My Front Door faces the side lot. So the adjacent lot marked in RED  conceptually belongs to the house.

It’s My Front Yard (Woods).

House now sits in the center of the two lots
Original Lot

The original lot ran along the side of the driveway and up to the green line in the back

Time to clean up the Wild Woods

It took 7 years of negotiation to secure that empty lot. But now it’s my front yard, so how best to transform that space into something enjoyable and attractive.

First step is to clean up all the fallen trees and remove the dead trees. Since this neighborhood is managed by an HOA, I have to first secure permission. With that in hand, we can start.

The Job? Turn this mess into a managed woodland setting.

Felling Trees

Luckily, I learned how to do this when I was a kid. We have to drop 16 standing dead trees up to 18″ in diameter. The first rule is that trees do not have to follow rules. So we’ll use chains and a come-along to tension the tree to ensure it falls exactly where we want.

Several of the trees were hollowed out with rot. I first notched and back-cut the truck, but they often broke off at an odd spot once tensioned.

As the trees were standing deadwood, they were cut up and given away as firewood.

Firewood going to a good home

Now comes the FUN part – Landscaping

Our concept for the front yard is to create the look of a managed woodlands park. It should have meandering paths flanked by interesting trees, bushes and flowers.

To Start, we planted two groups of three Arborvitae Green Giant along the border about 9′ apart. Lucky for us, we have a great nursery just 5 miles from the house. Landscape Solutions has a friendly knowledgeable staff who quickly found us six good-sized trees.

To separate the groups of tall trees, we selected smaller, evergreen shrubs, like the Cleyera Japonica.

Trio of Arborvitae Green Giant (Thuja)

Mail-Order Trees

After clearing out all the dead trees, we found a large open space opposite the front door. We built walking paths and covered them with wood chip and designed a free standing stacked stone wall shaped in an arc. The perfect spot for some decorative trees. But WHERE to find them? Buying large established trees can get pricey…

A quick web search turned up TN Wholesale Nursery 60 miles away that grows and sells trees on-line. Being local is a big advantage as the plants are acclimated to our soil and growing zone. The trees are “bareroot” and are only shipped out when dormant after November. I ordered a Redbud, a Red Maple and a White Dogwood and all arrived on 25 Nov. You can see the extensive root system of the Red Maple in the photo. Trees were nearly 4′ tall. Will be interested to see what sprouts in the Spring.

We live on the Cumberland Plateau at 2000′ elevation. The soil is generally poor with clay and solid sandstone often right below the surface. So we dig down a good way to ensure proper drainage and fill the hole with better soil rich in organic matter. After planting the trees, we covered the area with mulch to retain moisture and heat.

Red Maple Roots
Planting trees in poor soil