2014-7-21 GOT PAVERS

Well, almost a year ago I started the construction on our garden courtyards. We got the pavers on July 21, 2014. Jack and I designed the gardens, I did the construction work. We had a general plan in mind, but made a few changes and additions as I went along. So…..thought you’d enjoy a few before and after photos.

Kitchen Garden 3 2014-3-5

Here’s the kitchen garden when we first arrived. One of the first things we had to do was replace the fence, it was more holes than boards.

2015-6-27 Kitchen Garden from Gate

The kitchen garden now. Please remember, as you go through the blog you can click on the pictures to see them larger. A Vitex Tree is on the left, it had purple blooms in the spring. It will rebloom later in the summer. The red-orange flowers of a Pride of Barbados or Mexican Bird of Paradise are peeking out from behind the Vitex.

Kitchen Garden 1 2014-3-5

Here is the same area from the other end………..

2015-6-27 Kitchen Garden from Barn

The plants in the lower left corner are Amaryllis. After Christmas Jack suggested we plant them in the garden, they’ll bloom in the spring. Cross Vine is on the trellis. By the end of summer the electrical panel should be pretty much concealed from view.  Mexican Butterfly Vine is growing up over the fence on the right. The seed pods are so neat, they look like butterflies. I collect the dried ones and put them on our Christmas tree.

2014-5-25 NW corner

The back yard was a mess, this is after I cleared out most of the bricks and trash strewn about.

2015-6-12 Cactus garden from Plum-Bob

Here’s the backyard now. Molly is happily reclined on the resting bench on the left.

2015-5-11 Back Yard End of Deck planter planted 2

This is a more complete view of the planter at the end of the deck. See the blue containers about half way up the long garden……

2015-5-9 New Planter -  cactus pots from deck

This is the view of them from above. Isn’t this a neat detail? Jack came up with the idea for the transition between the planting areas.

Back Courtyard area 2014-4-18 A

Coming up from the backyard to the north side of the yard. This is what it looked like when we first arrived. The Boxwoods were the first to go.

2015-6-12 Fountain courtyard arbor

The Rose Arbor is a 20 foot long Livestock Panel. We arched it over and anchored it to steel posts. Blue Mist is blooming in the bed on the right, butterflies love it. When you go by they fly up; making you feel like you’re walking through a cloud of butterfly wings. If you enlarge the image you can see the Fountain Courtyard.

2015-6-21 fountain courtyard

The trellis on the fence of the Fountain Courtyard is another Livestock Panel. Confederate Jasmine is growing up the wall, eventually it will drape over. When it blooms in April and May the fragrance is amazing.

2015-5-9 Fountain Courtyard walk to ramp

The walk from the Fountain level curves up to the ramp to the deck.

Back Porch gate 2014-3-11

The area alongside the house outside the gate opening to the deck was also pretty much a disaster.

2015-6-12 Fern garden north side

I moved the lost rocks and made a planter. It’s much more inviting now, what do you think?

2014-6-23 Garden Shed Door

I was so thrilled our new home had a small barn for all of my garden stuff. However, it did need some work.

2015-6-23 Barn with geckos

New doors and a few pavers make a huge difference. I love geckos, Jack surprised me with these. Aren’t they cute? Cross Vine is planted on the trellis under the window, it’s a continuation of the one that conceals the utility meters. When it blooms the Hummingbirds will flock to the orange blossoms. Molly and Sissie are going to go nuts, watching them from the window sill.

2015-6-12 Molly and barn

The steps coming down from the deck end up on this curved patio that starts the mulched walkway to the barn. WHEW!!!! The heavy construction is done. Now I can just play in the garden; deadheading and watering. We can enjoy some porch sitting and plain relaxing. Looks like Molly has gotten the hang of it already! Hugs,

Mikki Senkarik signature


26 Responses to “DONE!”

  1. Louise Mellon Says:

    Mikki, what a transformation! It’s all absolutely beautiful! [?] Louise Mellon

  2. geminisinger Says:

    Goodness…you two are a hardworking, talented couple! Lovely…

  3. Jerry Taylor Says:

    Mikki, does Jack have any idea how fortunate he is to have an artist, an architect, and a master gardener for a wife? That is a marvelous job you’ve done and I know how hard you worked because I built a 1000 + sq. ft. paver patio on two levels with curves and circles. My neighbor asked his wife why I did that, she said “Because he’s an artist”. Go figure?

    • Mikki Senkarik Says:

      Thank you for the compliments. I’m a lucky lady, Jack tells me quite often how much he appreciates me. I bet your patio is gorgeous. Love your neighbor’s response! Of course we’re artists, And it extends far beyond the studio. I just believe we all look at the world differently, in a beautiful way. Have a great day and thank you for following my blog!

  4. Bonita Austin Says:

    Beautiful work. Congratulations on making it yours. I’m jealous!

  5. Linda Young Says:

    What a beautiful transition. Thank you so much for sharing your before and after photos. Top notch job!

  6. Karen Burnette Garner Says:

    How inspiring! LOVE your transformation! My garden is an extension of my art, and obviously, you are a master! Thank you for sharing, Mikki!

  7. sotxgrannie Says:

    Beautiful before and after photos! You have an amazing piece of paradise! (This is Elaine K.) Hugs! 🙂

  8. Cathleen Battles Says:

    Pretty amazing!

    Thnx for sharing.


  9. joannecali Says:

    Beautiful work and space and plant life! (oops, and kitty life too : – )

  10. AniK Says:

    Mikki, you are always a motivation for me to work hard. Now this garden and the kitties? It’s my new dream!

  11. Janet Zeh Says:

    Congratulations on all your hard work. It all looks lovely!

  12. Leon and Peggy Black Says:

    Great job!!!!!!!!

  13. Sheryl Says:

    Beautiful result! I can see the artistic talent of 2 artists taking shape in the garden!

  14. Annette Says:

    Wow, that is really pretty. So much attention to detail. You did a great job. It’s wonderful to just step out your door and be in your own piece of paradise.

  15. Regina Says:


  16. SAIMA SADAF Says:

    Peaceful garden

  17. SAIMA SADAF Says:

    I wish to visit and enjoy the beauty and and calmness of the place

  18. lori landis art Says:

    What a beautiful garden Mikki!! Well done Jack and Mikki!

  19. Margaret Park Says:

    This is lovely. What a lot of work you have done. I’m not sure I would have that much every.

    Sent from my iPhone


  20. artistonthehill Says:

    Wow, thank you so much for sharing the transformation of your yard. Beautiful. You must spend a lot of hours in your yard. How do you manage to paint and garden? I could use some tips. I live in Washington and we are going to have a very dry and hot summer. No rain in the expected for at least 5 weeks. Yes, I did say the state of WA. We are known for our rain. Hugs and Blessings Karen Lucas Art & Frame 253-847-0858


    • Mikki Senkarik Says:

      Hi Karen,
      Washington is such a beautiful area, the gardens there are amazing. I think we are getting your rain this year 🙂 I would suggest doing some containers with Marigolds and Zinnias. They’ll need to get sun as they don’t like shade. You might ask at your local nursery what plants they’d recommend. As far as replanting in your garden I’m afraid if you put in any drought tolerant plants they will drown when you begin getting your normal rainfall. Jack and I have several cacti and salvias that have really suffered in our uncharacteristic heavy rains. It’s great because we’ve been in a drought for years but our low water plants aren’t happy with all the extra moisture from heaven! Guess you’ll have to water those plants in your garden that love the wet weather.
      As far as getting the gardening and painting done…..during the construction process I’d work about an hour and a half each morning. Then start painting about 10 or so, til 4:30 or 5. Now I’m able to just piddle in the flowers, deadheading and enjoying so I’m probably out there about an hour. I’ve gotten a little long winded, hope this all helps. Hugs, Mikki

  21. Carl Boxler Says:

    Wow and amazing and gorgeous and beautiful and inspired and and… I cannot close my mouth in awe at the incredible transformations you did and all the back breaking work but look at the incredible results. WOW and thank you SO much for sharing.

  22. wafaa Says:

    Very beautiful. You have done a great job. Thank you for sharing us.

  23. Delilah Says:

    Just shows what hard work and a creative mind can do. I saw the before and OMG but you got a big WOW out of me in the after.

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