Sprucing Up the Thuja Greens

I decided to finally tackle a project in the yard that has been on my list for a while – sprucing up the bed next to our patio where our Thuja Greens live.  I am so glad the previous homeowners replaced the original small concrete slab with a larger area of prettier paving stones, but the side closest to the fence sort of dropped off and the pavers on the edge were caving a little.  I don’t know if that is the way it was when they built it, or if over time the soil eroded away.  When we planted the Thujas, we didn’t add any soil or put down a weed-blocking fabric.  I decided to remedy all of these problems a few weeks ago.  Hot afternoons and rain last weekend kept me from finishing the project faster.

First I decided to dig a little trench from the patio to the retaining wall and repurpose some of the retaining wall blocks that were doing nothing to keep the edge of the patio from caving to give the transition from grass to mulched bed some definition.

 I ended up buying five bags of stones to build up against the edge of the patio and then filled that in with six bags of topsoil to gradually grade the bed down from the patio for drainage.  I guess I’m just keeping my fingers crossed that I packed it in tight enough for it to hold everything up, including the pavers on the edge of the patio.  After I got the grading finished, I staked down some weed-blocking fabric.  We haven’t had too many weeds popping up here, except that the crape myrtles we cut down still send up a few springs every year.

I bought a soaker hose to put in this bed because the Thuja pictured above decided to fall over one day last fall after being in the ground for two years.  I have it staked upright, and thought if I could start watering it deeply, maybe it will grow deeper roots.  Once the soaker hose was in place, I put the cypress mulch back down, adding a few bags to freshen everything up.  Next on the yard agenda is replacing the fence!

And for comparison, here is what this bed looked
like when we first installed the Thuja Greens:

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