Total Backyard Renovation – Covid Project – Mega Album via /r/DIY


Total Backyard Renovation – Covid Project – Mega Album

Mega Alubum

My wife and I have been talked about renovating our backyard since we moved into our house 5 years ago. The house was new when we bought it but we didn’t design any of it. Unfortunately, with as big of yard as we have, we didn't have anywhere to actually enjoy it since our back porch isn't large enough to fit anything more than a bistro table and chairs. Without a garage, we also didn't have any place to store lawn equipment, bikes, woodworking tools, etc. We wanted to create a backyard that met the following needs:

Patio with a sitting area and hopefully room for a table to eat outside. Outdoor storage A place for the kids to play Add privacy from the future neighbors Relatively low maintenance

When covid started, we figured this would be a great time to get to work. The backyard was a blank slate and it was really difficult trying to plan and design everything. We agreed on a design and initially planned on implementing the project in stages over a longer period of time but it quickly turned into completing the full backyard makeover over the last 9 months.

Due to my completely unfounded self-confidence and cheapness, we did everything ourselves and the unbelievable help of my dad and other family members and friends. Most of the project wasn’t too complicated and just required a lot of sweat equity. I learned how to use google sketchup by designing the model of my house from the blueprints our contractor provided when we bought the house. Everything else I learned through youtube and researching online. I knew next to nothing about horticulture prior to this and found a ton of information on the LSU Ag Center’s site among many other places. We’re in zone 9 for anyone curious. I created a master excel document with the measurements of each section for the rock, soil, mulch, and concrete calculations and used that when pricing different vendors. By far the most difficult part was pouring and finishing the concrete slab which was the first time any of us had done that. In hindsight, the smart decision would have probably been to contract that out and I’ll probably do that if I ever have to pour something this large again.

Though the bulk of the project is done, there are still a few other things I’d like to do like and am already preparing for including running a drip irrigation system, installing landscape lighting, and running additional electric to my shed and adding receptacles around the patio for some outdoor fans. But I’m not in any rush.

Overall, this was a ton of work but I learned a bunch of new skills, had a great time, and got to spend some unquantifiable quality time with my dad. We’re looking forward to enjoying evenings outside as everything warms up again and now that daylight savings time is back. It’s been extremely rewarding already to relax outside as our kids run around playing.

I put a bit of the details in the photo descriptions but please let me know if you have any questions and I’ll be happy to answer anything I can. Just remember I’m not an expert in any of this. Feel free to provide any comments or criticism just know that what’s done is done and odds are, unless it’s a major safety issue, I’m not going back to change it. Thanks for taking a look. Hope you enjoy seeing the process.

Since I imagine it’ll be the first question most people want to know, after everything I could remember, it cost a total of $6,373.24. I put together a cost breakdown below though I may have left out a few things. The exact cost is there for things I had the receipts for and for other things I estimated from memory.

Submitted March 25, 2021 at 05:30PM by MiketheTiger1860
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