Everybody’s YARDworking for the Weekend

The weather is warm and we’re full of energy! Here’s a quick rundown of what we got done around the yard yesterday.

We busted up some remnants of an old fence…

Old Fence Woodpile

We dug out this drain that was covered in grass and dirt, then replaced with river rocks…

River Rock Drain

We tore up a dead bush…

Empty Corner

…and replaced it with some rhododendron…


…and lava rocks and a hook for a hanging plant…in the future.

New Corner Garden

We planted some flowers (pansies and snapdragons) in another of our garden spaces…


We mulched the crap out of everything…

corner tree

We’ve had a fence door that has been giving us trouble since we moved in. It turns out ants were destroying the support piece of wood holding all of the slats together. We quickly destroyed them (not pictured) and replaced the wood. (also not pictured)

fence door on ground

That one bottom slat was broken pretty good and was only being held on by the ants’ rotten wood. First though, we replaced all of the nails and capped them with a little wood glue.

New Nails

This didn’t look great, so once the glue was dried we headed out to find a paint that would match for touch ups. With a little help from our friend in the paint department at Lowes we were able to color match pretty close. In this photo it hasn’t dried yet, but you get the idea.

Repaired Fence with Touch Up

Repaired Fence with Wood Putty

Even with the new wood in place this hinge was pretty busted up.

Busted Fence Hinge

After a little reshaping of the hinge and the addition of some new locking washers, its as good as new.

Fixed Hinge

In our humble opinions, the door now works better than ever before. No more getting stuck trying to get into or out of the backyard…

Fixed Fence

And now we’ll leave you with these random flowers that have sprouted up in the yard…

Yard Flowers

Bush Flowers

Roof Truth

The past couple weekends I’ve been up on the roof trying to solve a problem. We’ve scoured the internet and tried a bunch of different things and nothing works. We’ve got these annoying stains running down the front and back sides of the roof. We’ve figured out they are caused by algae. And this, in turn, is most likely due to the close proximity of a bunch of trees to our roof.

Roof Stains - AlgaeWhen we moved in we were told the roof was only 3-5 years old. I don’t believe it from the looks of it, but a neighbor has confirmed it is relatively new. The first fall that we were living in the house we trimmed back a bunch of the trees. They’ve grown back, but not significantly enough that I’d expect stains and algae.

Spray and ForgetWe’ve done a ton of research online and the best two options we could come up with were  product called “Spray and Forget.” We tested this out on our concrete patio with great results. On the roof? Not so much. I don’t see any noticeable difference.

Oxi Clean for Cleaning Roof ShinglesNext we tried oxygen bleach, or OxiClean. This seems to have gotten rid of the darkest spots, but the widespread staining is still there. So here we are, with a stained roof. We’re in the northeast, and in a relatively high moisture area, so I guess this is to be expected, but its very frustrating.

Have any readers out there ever experienced this? Maybe you can offer some advice! Comment here or head over to Facebook to share your experience. Follow us on Instagram too so you can always stay up to date with the latest and greatest on our DIY and home improvement projects.

A Tree Grows in Hazlet

Last week we decided to take care of some business around the house, outdoors to be exact. As we blogged about in the past, a tree fell on my car last year during Hurricane Sandy. Since then, we have obviously wanted to get rid of the eyesore in our back yard (the broken tree).

In addition to that, there is a big huge oak tree in our neighbors driveway, right on our property line. This tree is so huge, it’s limbs extend out to the street, out to our backyard and out, across our driveway in a few directions. The limbs were getting dangerously close to the house and were already putting our cars in a lot of danger…until now! We did our homework on several tree experts in the area and our friends at Avery Tree Experts were up for the challenge.

Tree trimming

We got a great deal from these guys and they did an excellent job. I spoke with them on Tuesday and they came and did the job on Wednesday – amazing! Now we have no limbs hanging over our driveway and nothing is stretching toward the roof of our house. We have also ridded our backyard of that awful broken tree from the storm. I feel a lot safer now from this tree, especially when it comes to major hurricanes, which have been a regular occurrence in New Jersey for us lately!

Tree trimming, trimmed treeTrimming branches on a treeTree stump, tree trimming

So you may be wondering, “why no DIY on this project?” Simply put: this job was just way too big for us. Not only do we not have the proper tools (chain saw, etc.) we also just could never reach these limbs and additionally, hauling everything away…not really sure how we would pull that off. This was definitely one for the professionals, and we have talked about this before, but I think it’s really important to realize when you can DIY and when you need to ask for help from the pros.

Do you know when to turn a project over to the pros or do you usually end up in over your head? Head over to our Facebook page or Tweet at us to let us know your DIY and home improvement dos and donts!