Sunday, September 19, 2010

Historic Garden Renovation, Part 2

As I mentioned in my earlier post Here, last Spring I recently completed the renovation of an Historic Home in Wilmington, NC.

My first task was to record the existing landscape as I found it.  I had to identify all plants on site and all other landscape elements such as walls, fences, walks, etc.  Here is my original site inventory.  I hope you can read it.


Site Inventory

From this information, I composed a plant list of all existing plant material.  It was my goal to recycle as many of the existing plants as possible.  Any plant that was determined to be worthy enough (i.e., was in good condition and form) would be spared and I am happy to say that we reused about 95% of the existing plants.  Out of these, nearly 40 per cent were transplanted to different locations on site, while the remaining plants stayed put.

When I began to work on site, the detached garage was under construction.  There was also no driveway to speak of.  It was all mud.  In this photo, you can see the wood garage going up in the upper right corner and the dirt that would become the driveway on the right side.



In the plan, the hatching to the right (North side) of the property is actually a large apartment building – the Carolina Apartments.  It is six stories high.  Notice it has no setback and actually sits about a foot or two off of the property line.


Photo from

The Carolina Apartments (View from Market Street)

The plan also shows an existing brick path at the upper left side of the drawing.  It extends from a wood arbor at the front side of the Bride’s room and runs to the first set of brick steps in the back. 


Because the contractor who put in the new brick steps gave no notice to the existing landscape or grade (see photo below), and the width of the walk was very narrow – less than 2-feet – we elected to remove this walk entirely.



The existing brick walk at the front of the house leading from the front door to the driveway was worth keeping.



Finally, I noted that the previous owners had begun chopping up the yard into various sections.  If you look at the plan above, the side yard adjacent to the south side of the Bride’s Room is completely fenced in.  A fence ran from the arbor in front to the south property line where there was another fence.  And yet another chainlink fence ran back toward the rear wall of the Bride’s Room.  As there wasn’t much of a view in that area, I am thinking that possibly that was a dog yard at one point.

Further around the back of the house, they subdivided another yard using Sasanqua camellias.  I have no idea why they would subdivide the yard in this manner.  But, as you will soon see, we elected to subdivide it in a different way.



That’s it for now.  Next up, is my proposed site plan.  Keep checking back to see the progress of this project!

1 comment:

  1. Now that I know about the Carolina Apartments I can find it on Bing. The place is huge. I regret I've seen almost nothing of Wilmington. Are the Apartments a going concern?


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