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posted: 5/26/2013 5:00 AM

Outdoor makeover contest Week 4: Kitchen window view

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  • A planting bed, incorporating an existing evergreen tree, could include flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, perennials and grasses.

      A planting bed, incorporating an existing evergreen tree, could include flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, perennials and grasses.
    Courtesy of RYCO Design Group

  • A planting bed, incorporating an existing evergreen tree, could include flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, perennials and grasses. A planting bed, incorporating an existing evergreen tree, could include flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, perennials and grasses.

      A planting bed, incorporating an existing evergreen tree, could include flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, perennials and grasses. A planting bed, incorporating an existing evergreen tree, could include flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, perennials and grasses.
    Courtesy of RYCO Design Group

  • A planting bed, incorporating an existing evergreen tree, could include flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, perennials and grasses.

      A planting bed, incorporating an existing evergreen tree, could include flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, perennials and grasses.
    Courtesy of RYCO Design Group

  • A planting bed, incorporating an existing evergreen tree, could include flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, perennials and grasses.

      A planting bed, incorporating an existing evergreen tree, could include flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, perennials and grasses.
    Courtesy of RYCO Design Group

  • This enormous backyard has a lot of potential and is in need of a few good ideas.

      This enormous backyard has a lot of potential and is in need of a few good ideas.

 
By Melissa Boelens of Hoffman Estates

As a mother of two young children, I spend a good deal of time standing at my kitchen sink doing dishes while staring out the window into my backyard. While we might live in a modest home, we have a massive yard. I couldn't even capture the amount of space we have in our yard with the one picture I attached. I would like to turn the blank slate of our backyard into a space where my kids can lay out a blanket over the summer and go out on "picnics," enjoying the beautiful scenery that we create. I would like for our family to have an outside area that is welcoming to our family and friends and that our children will have fun playing and running around in. When I was a teenager, one of my friends had a gorgeous gazebo in her yard, and I have always dreamed of one day incorporating that into my own outdoor space. I would like to win this contest because my yard is full of possibilities that I haven't even thought of! Then while I pass the time doing dishes and staring out kitchen window, I will truly have something beautiful to stare at!

Transformation by RYCO Design Group of South Barrington

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Budget: $5,000-$10,000, not including gazebo

The mother of two is daydreaming out the kitchen window for a better view while cleaning up dishes and the mess of the day. She wants to take the blank slate and turn it into a place her and the kids can enjoy all summer long. She has longed for a gazebo in her own yard and something beautiful to look at in her yard from her kitchen window.

We suggest:

• Planting bed incorporating existing evergreen tree. Using flowering shrubs, ornamental trees, perennials and grasses to give lots of color texture and four-season interest.

• Steppingstone path through the bed for the kids to explore and access to gazebo.

• Add gazebo and bench sitting area to enjoy the garden and give a nice spot to relax.

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