Yard 101: Make My Yard Look Cool

What I Want

“I want you to make our yard look cool.”

That is one of the first comments I made to Sean Newman about my yard. It was terribly non-specific. Almost like I wanted him to read my mind. I also wanted a reasonable price. I’m pretty sure everyone starts with those type of requirements.

I ultimately wanted a yard that would look something like this.

A green lawn. Shrubs and plants. Trees that grow quickly and require minimal care.

Why I Wanted It

I grew up in Massachusetts mowing lawns, raking leaves and even raising chickens*. When I moved from Massachusetts to New York City and later to Brooklyn I only wanted fake plants in my life. Nothing gave me more happiness than having zero responsibilities when it came to yard work.

Life changes though. Specifically, marriage to my beautiful wife Danielle, two kids and a desire to grill. The result: moving to Long Island and wanting to…have a yard with a minimal amount of work. Have I mentioned my desire for minimal work? Danielle grew up in Queens and was anxious to grow herbs, tend to a vegetable garden and throw baseballs around with the kids.

Finding The Answer

The truth with our yard is it came with a giant oak tree, our backyard was full of cement and there was a shed that had rotting wood. Life is not perfect everyone. The key is that Danielle and I took some time to figure out what we thought we want, what we knew we wanted and a few things in between. Over time I’ve asked Sean approximately 500 questions about my yard, had his build a bar for my backyard and ended up great friends with his wife.

I offered to write Yard 101 entries, FAQs about taking care of the yard and also stories. I offered since every time someone comes to our yard they love what Sean did with the yard. I’ve been answering questions ever since he and his people worked on the yard and now I’m going to share what happened.

Also, it’s really nice when people say, “Your yard looks so cool.”


* Long Island does not allow chicken coops in your backyard.