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updated: 5/5/2013 2:39 PM

Outdoor makeover Week 1: Hey yew, get off of my yard

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  • Courtesy of Lisa CiesielskiYews had their place in the history of American landscaping -- and that's where this family would like to leave them.

      Courtesy of Lisa CiesielskiYews had their place in the history of American landscaping -- and that's where this family would like to leave them.

  • A decorative container filled with seasonal plantings will add a finishing touch to the front entry.

      A decorative container filled with seasonal plantings will add a finishing touch to the front entry.
    Courtesy of Lurvey Landscape Supply & Garden Cente

  • Little lime hydrangea can help give a layered look to a landscape design.

      Little lime hydrangea can help give a layered look to a landscape design.
    Courtesy of Lurvey Landscape Supply & Garden Cente

  • Knock Out Roses can help give a layered look to a landscape design.

      Knock Out Roses can help give a layered look to a landscape design.
    Courtesy of Lurvey Landscape Supply & Garden Cente

  • Dwarf Fountain grass contrasts nicely with flowering plants surrounding it.

      Dwarf Fountain grass contrasts nicely with flowering plants surrounding it.
    Courtesy of Lurvey Landscape Supply & Garden Cente

  • Green velvet boxwood can help anchor the corner of a house.

      Green velvet boxwood can help anchor the corner of a house.
    Courtesy of Lurvey Landscape Supply & Garden Cente

  • An outcropping of stones near an ornamental tree can add dimension to an outdoor design as well as help to anchor the house.

      An outcropping of stones near an ornamental tree can add dimension to an outdoor design as well as help to anchor the house.
    Courtesy of Lurvey Landscape Supply & Garden Cente

 
By Lisa Ciesielski of Des Plaines

Remember when yews were the bush in fashion?

The house we bought from my in-laws had plenty, and soon after purchase, I decided to remove many of them.

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My husband says I cannot take the ones in front out unless we have a replacement plan -- and money!

They continue to get more and more overgrown every year, and each winter we spend too much effort knocking the snow off (so they don't die!).

When a skunk fell into the window well, I had to have a neighbor pull the bush aside in order for me to get in there and put a cover on.

Please bring my house into the 21st century of landscaping!

Transformation by Lurvey Landscape Supply & Garden Center

Budget: $5,000 or more

The existing landscaping is typical of 1950s, 1960s foundation plantings with yew hedges trimmed tight and close to the house.

• Remove existing yew hedges and create a new curvy flowing bed line to incorporate a new updated landscape.

• Install a combination of new plant material. Anchor the corner of the house with a serviceberry or other smaller ornamental tree. Use Green Velvet Boxwood, Little Lime Hydrangea, Little Devil Ninebark, Green Velvet Boxwood, Knock Out Roses, Happy Returns Daylily, East Friesland Salvia, and other seasonal plantings to give a layered look with multiple heights, colors and textures to the landscape.

This new combination will make the landscape feel more garden like and bring the house and landscape together.

• Add outcropping stones near the ornamental tree to add another dimension and anchor the house, other touches of outcropping can also be used near the front entry.

• Finish the front entry off with a decorative container filled with seasonal plantings which can be changed out with the seasons.

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