It’s all about the details. Yard of the month for July is picture perfect whether it is December or the dog days of summer. Erica Bonner of 9316 Silk Oak Cove keeps her yard ready for inspection at all times. Unlike some of the previous YOM yards, this yard has very manicured, traditional landscaping which enhances the red brick traditional home. And the house is as well kept as the yard with lots of energy efficient upgrades like a storm door and solar screens. The front of the house has precisely trimmed shrubs that extend right up to the front door. Limestone pavers neatly edge the flower beds and red mulch (reflecting the house color) provides a pop of color while completing the manicured look. The yard is shaded by two large trees, an ash and an oak. A large, prettyflowergardensurroundstheoaktree. Vibrantcoordinatingcolors are provided by roses, oxalis, dusty miller, purple verbena, Hawthorne, Shasta daisies, begonias and more.
But like all great yards, this one has small surprises at every turn. A pretty urn overflowing with asparagus fern, begonias, and other flowers greets visitors at the front walk accompanied by a welcome sign bedecked with turtles.. Erica is obviously a bird watcher as evidenced by the two whimsical bird feeders, blown glass hummingbird feeder, and bird bath. But Erica isn’t the only bird fancier in the family. Blinds in the front room are left open so her cat can watch the bird feeder and daydream.
The yard didn’t always look this way though, when Erica bought the house in 2009 it had been a rental and the yard reflected it. Erica says she met many of her neighbors for the first time when they stopped to visit while she worked in her yard. Neighbors on Silk Oak Cove were thankful for all the hard work she put in and the lovely improvements. After talking to Erica, it is clear she knows her plants and has a great love of all things outdoors.
Like all the YOM homeowners I have met, Erica’s backyard is even more beautiful than her front yard. She has created a haven for plants, wildlife, and especially people. A couple of interesting things I learned were to look for plants in non-traditional settings; she especially recommends the Lavender Festival in Fredericksburg. She says you get interesting species at great prices. The other take-away was not to sweat the little things, she will try different species in various locations and see what works. It’s the process not the destination, just get out and enjoy!