Jacki Kellum Garden
In the above photo, you see my sundial and a few annuals that are planted beside it, but if you look carefully behind the annuals, you might get a glimpse of a part of my garden wall unit.
In the above photo, you see that same area during the early part of the summer–before the plants had grown to the point that they have now. You also see how the garden wall is an extension of the raised bed that I built there before I added the wall.
I built the garden wall to hide the unsightly air conditioner unit and storm cellar that are next to my back sitting area.
Jacki Kellum Lawn Before She Began Creating Her Garden Wall to help you better appreciate the difference that a garden can make, I decided to show you the Before picture of that same area. The above photo shows you the “Before” phase of my garden. 5 months ago, my garden looked like the “Before” image.
Even before I moved into my current house, I knew that I would not be able to tolerate the way that the view of the air conditioner and storm cellar ruined any possibility of creating a pleasant sitting area outside my sunroom doors [which lead to the main part of the back of my house].I knew that I had to screen out that air conditioner view, and therefore, I launched my project to build a set of garden walls to do just that.
- My first step was to go to an Ozark Mountain sawmill, where I bought a load of rough cedar boards.
- My second step was to build a network of raised beds.
- My third step was to place cardboard at the bottom of each raised bed–and everywhere else. I did this to stop the growth of weeds.
Jacki Kellum Garden Raised Beds April 15, 2021
By April 15, I had built a network of raised beds on both sides of my patio. The above photo shows the area opposite from where I built the garden wall, but this area will eventually become important in my creating an outdoor garden room.
The above photo shows how that arbor area looed on August 24, 2021.
Admission: I am not a great builder, and I used the boards in the raised beds to help anchor the vertical posts that I would need to build my walls, fences, arbors, trellises, etc.
The above photo shows how the area around the birdhouse looed on August 7, 2021
For at least 20 feet outward from the house, I had filled the raised bed area with a network of perennials.
The above photo of my raised beds was taken August 19, 2019– four months after I built the raised beds.
As usual, I have placed the larger plants behind the shorter ones. The above photo shows my garden area on the left of my patio doors, looking toward the wall garden on the right side of my patio.
The above photo shows the area next to the arbor on August 7, 2021. This fence panel connects to the privacy fence that extends from my house and to all of the above.
On the right side of my patio, I began by building an 8′ x 8′ raised bed, but that bed was on the concrete pad where my air conditioner was resting. I placed my potting bench on the outer edge of that section, and I used the potting bench to support the boards that I added to build a wall there. The hardest part of building something alone is that you have no one to hold things, and my potting bench held the boards until I could nail them in place.
I built another wall perpendicular to the first wall, and I used another shelf to support that wall until I could nail it in place.
The above photo was taken in June, and it shows the corner at which the two walls meet.
The above photo shows that same area in late July, after much of the garden had grown and had begun filling things in.
The above photo shows another shorter shelf. To make the space more like a room, I have added a vase where I place fresh flowers in water. A piece of garden art is behind and to the right of that.
As the summer continued, the garden areas became more and more lush.
I have used both containers and plantings to accentuate that lushness.
The above photo shows the sitting area that I have created. The garden wall is on the right, and the arbor is on the left.
The arbor area and the plantings around it enclose the sitting area on the right.
When you are sitting in my enclosed garden room, there is little evidence that behind the garden wall, an atrocious sight is hidden.
I am not finished with this area. There is a type of doorway-like opening between my house and my wall unit. That opening will allow service people to access the ac, if that is necessary. I hope to get someone better than I to build an actual door here and to add a primitive greenhouse on the other side. I’ll finish the walls at that time, and I’ll build shelves on the backs of the walls. I’ll use those shelves for storage–especially as a place to store the plastic pots that I use each spring to start new plants.
The greenhouse would extend from my house, outside my mudroom door. I’ll attach my wall until to the greenhouse, and that will anchor it even better. By the way, the greenhouse would be facing the South. Perfect.
The above photo shows most of the garden that I created in my back yard during the spring and summer of August 2021, and again, I completed the entire project in under 5 months.