Blue Castle Garden Timeline

Creating a beautiful garden can take many years. Discover how Blue Castle Garden slowly developed from a dirt lot into a lush garden and observe the accomplishments, challenges and discoveries along the way. 

Blue Castle Garden: Year 1

In 2005 planning began for Blue Castle Garden. The lot size, lot shape and house direction were decided on which would have a great influence on the garden design and plant selection for years to come.

Blue Castle Garden: Year 2

In 2006 the house construction was completed in late January. Much of the upcoming summer was spent dealing with an unexpected grade elevation problem between my house and my neighbor’s house.

Blue Castle Garden: Year 3

In 2007 fence building began after the construction of a retaining wall. Sod was laid over the entire front yard and the first plants were grown, including a thriving patch of potatoes in the empty back yard.

Blue Castle Garden: Year 4

In 2008 the fencing on all sides was completed. The major outlines of the back yard garden were established and half of the front yard sod was moved to the back. The back yard gate arch and pergola were constructed.

Blue Castle Garden: Year 5

In 2009 all major wooden structures were completed and painting began. The side yard flagstone path was laid and the dry stream bed and bridge were built. Both front and back yard were fully planted.

Blue Castle Garden: Year 6

In 2010 several minor construction projects were completed and the soil was heavily amended. Starting plants with grow lights was attempted for the first time and a terrible hailstorm shredded the garden in late summer.

Blue Castle Garden: Year 7

In 2011 experimentation continued with plants, bulbs and seeds, and I finally achieved the English Cottage Garden style I had dreamed of. Losing my 5 year old Russian Olive tree was a huge disappointment. 

Blue Castle Garden: Year 8

In 2012 the garden was abandoned for over 6 weeks with disasterous results. Flowerbeds became filled with weeds which took over 3 years to eventually eradicate. The lawn grew unchecked and the thistles thrived.

Blue Castle Garden: Year 9

In 2013 the weeds multiplied and new planting ceased. Every perennial and bush was stringently evaluated with the majority found wanting. Plants were given away to happy friends and coworkers by the carload.

Blue Castle Garden: Year 10

In 2014 the garden made a significant turn around in the right direction. It was slowly replanted after much research and thoughtful consideration. Every plant was correctly spaced on the garden plan before planting.

Blue Castle Garden: Year 11

In 2015 the plant design became more refined. Dozens of award-winning iris ordered from the largest US grower bloomed in a stunning display. After many frustrating years, gardening finally became fun again.

Blue Castle Garden: Year 12

In 2016 the deck, pergola, gate arches, lattice and gates were stripped in preparation for restaining with higher quality stain. A protective screen was installed to protect my neighbors from a poisonous plant. 

Blue Castle Garden: Year 13

In 2017 a drainage problem was addressed, the dry stream bed was lined and structure restaining was completed. A support frame for the flagstone landing off the patio was constructed.

Blue Castle Garden: Year 14 (1/2)

In early 2018 the last of the stonework was completed; the flagstone under the pergola, off the deck and a paver stone front entrance walkway, path and patio circle. A privacy screen and two unique gates were built.