Landscaping Lawn and Garden

Rock ‘n Roll Yard

The Red House was built close to a creek. The creek must have meandered all over where the red house is located. I know this because of this… 


This is not a potato…this is an honest for goodness river rock. For any of you who do not live next to a creek, this is why digging holes in my yard is an adventure.  This is not the first and it will certainly not be the last rock I dig up in my yard. In fact, this one is just one of about a billion that have already been dug up in my yard. However, this one was pulled out of my yard on Saturday while digging a hole for a new tree. Also, for any of you skeptics out there that are saying, “yeah, yeah…we all have rocks in our yards,” here is the comparison of the rock with a regular sized shovel… 


Changes the perspective on the situation, right? I like to tell people that I do not have dirt in my yard; I have cement that masquerades as dirt on occasion. Seriously, the dirt in my yard reminds me of Craters of the Moon…there is little to no vegetation within the rocky dirt. Even the worms and other soil loving creepy crawlies have mostly forsaken my cement…er…dirt. 


Enough with my complaints; this is where having the Robear and the Restoration Whisperer living close by helps me enormously. Robear because you just have to mention that you might have a Saturday yard project and she is on it like blue bonnet. (As a word to the wise, when you have a wanna-be-farmer for a mother make sure you are committed to the project before giving her any hints. She will make sure you don’t forget.) 


The Restoration Whisperer is also helpful because he has a backhoe! Love the backhoe. The backhoe is probably my favorite piece of machinery…ever. Most of the trees in my yard would not exist without the backhoe. 


So on Saturday when Robear was game to dig right in to the cement/dirt the good old fashioned way [hard work (mostly Robear), sweat (Robear and me), and tears (just me)], I decided that the backhoe would probably resent us if we did not invite it to our little party. 


Needless to say, the Restoration Whisperer drove right over in the backhoe and had the hole dug within 5 minutes. The backhoe scoffs at my cement/dirt and just digs right in as though it is merely butter on a warm day. 


As a final tip for anyone with cement rather than soil for a yard, I recommend digging the hole extra big and deep and mixing equal parts of peat moss and cement/dirt) for the back fill. This gives the tree’s roots some heads up as to the harsh realities of its new environment while also providing it some therapy to deal with its difficult new life. 



Root stimulator and some good old fashioned fertilizer can’t hurt either.  


I also suggest spreading a lot of mulch to beautify the cement-like quality of the dirt and hope it will be a good example to the cement/dirt as to what real dirt is supposed to look and act like. 


In the meantime, I have a dream that someday, if I pull out enough rocks and add enough peat moss, mulch, and other fluffy organic based products, I too can have soil rather than cement with rocks. I may be kidding myself, but a girl can dream. 



  • It really is amazing just how awful the ground is there in that area. I never knew a person could dig holes more than an inch deep without a pick ax until I moved away. Save your rocks though. They can have beautiful landscaping potential.

    • No worries, I have a whole pile of river rock ready for an awesome April project. Thinking that the rock may eventually be used in a useful way is one of the only things that keeps me from tearing all my hair out while digging (or attempting to dig) in my yard.

  • Fabulous post Brooke. You are soooo funny. You definitely have a talent with words. Come to think of it, so do Cath and April, Paula and Squash. How did I get such amazing daughters? You are all so smart and talented.