My wife and I had talked about converting the lawn in the back yard to xeriscaping for several years. Over the last 4 years, California has experienced a terribly deep drought. This plus the California Turf Replacement Rebate Program provided the spark for us to undertake it last fall.
Time: 6 Weeks Cost: $1256.00 Difficulty: Advanced
Looking east. Back yard before make over. The grass had died because we had to cut way back on watering due to the deep drought in northern California. Note the circular brick patio in the foreground that I had built it several years ago.
Looking west from the pergola. Preparing the beds for the pathways. I laid and leveled 4 inches of sand in the trenches to lay the bricks on. This and laying the bricks were the hardest parts of the project and the most time consuming.
Laying the bricks in the pathways. Kudos to my wife, she laid at least 75% of the bricks! Sorry I don't have pictures of laying the weed block cloth and placing the landscaping rocks on that. I also converted the lawn sprinkling station completely to drip irrigation. It supports the new drought tolerant plants and one tree in the project area as well as the bushes around the edge. Note circular brick patio in the background.
Looking west after transition to xeriscaping. Note the boulders in the foreground. There is a slope here and the boulders are necessary to keep the landscape rock from sliding downhill when walked upon. The raised planters on the right side existed before the project. But we built the pathway in between them and down the slope. The landscape rocks are black lava and "salt and pepper rock".