A First Look at Our Spring and Summer 2022 Gardening Plans


Spring Gardening Plans - A view of a backyard garden in early spring.
Looking toward the back of our house from the garden in the backyard

When we bought this house, we didn’t think much about the outdoor space. We talked about how nice it would be to have all the old trees around, plus room for the kids to explore and dogs to roam. We did not realize how much work and maintenance this kind of outdoor space would take, especially once we started to cut through all the weeds and overgrowth that sprawled in each garden bed. I’ve been overwhelmed since the summer of 2020, first thinking it would be a project I could tackle on my own, then slipping into debilitating overwhelm not knowing where to begin.

We have since made some decisions on how to move forward with our garden and yard, step by step. We know that we now have a better grasp on how we like to live and how much we want to spend on this project—both in terms of a dollar amount and the scope of upkeep.

Below you’ll find our spring and summer gardening plans, plus a peek at what’s coming next year…

The first step in planning our garden and yard? I asked for help.

After trying to tackle our garden and yard myself the past two years, I gave in to the fact that I’m not fully sure what I’m doing when it comes to gardening quite yet. I’ve decided to plan our garden and yard for the person I am now, not the person I hope to be. 

A brick patio at the back of a house in early spring.
Our back patio

The first step in updating our garden and yard was hiring a landscape design company (Landscape Love, for Twin Cities locals) to work with us on future plans for the area. A friend of mine hired Landscape Love for her yard and raved about their design capabilities. We first met with them last month and they’ll bring us plans to review in June. We’ll then have a few weeks to edit the plans and they’ll implement the updates in 2023. The process of planning exactly how the end result will look is a fee outside of the actual installation, which is something I really appreciate. From my perspective, this process will help give us a roadmap for the updates and a better understanding of how we can break down the cost and timeline in a way that works for us.

In terms of high-level updates for next year, we’ll likely be replacing the patios and many of the patio walls (a lot of the brick in these areas is crumbling), both in the front and back of the house. The designers plan to create a design that keeps the lush garden area in the backyard. We’ll also be changing the exterior color of the house, although we’re not yet certain when that will happen. If you’re curious to see more, I’ve been saving inspiration to share with our landscape designer on this board on Pinterest.

A lush, green backyard garden in peak growing season with a dog standing in the middle.
A look at our backyard garden in peak growing season (photo from summer 2020)

My Gardening Plans for This Year

This year, the plan is to get focused on updates we can realistically make on our own, given our bandwidth. Here’s the gist of our gardening plans for 2022:

1. Lately, we’ve been cleaning up debris in the yard that didn’t get tackled before the snow fell. 

2. We’ll hire someone to remove plants that have been dead for a while. We’re trying to keep as much existing healthy growth as possible. We will tackle this sometime between April and June.

3. We’ll hire someone to aerate the lawn and put new grass seeds down. We’re hoping this will be done within the next month or so.

A brick patio in early spring.
A part of our front patio

4. I purchased bulbs from Breck’s (tulips and foxgloves) that I’ll plant throughout the garden in the backyard in April. It isn’t optimal timing, but it’s still cold enough here to plant them, so I’m going to give it a try.

5. In terms of additional gardening design elements, this year the focus will be on container gardens. We plan to add planters in the front, flanking the front door, as well as in the patio area in the back. I’m excited to use the container gardens to bring more color to our outdoor spaces, since right now the plants are essentially all green. I’m working on a design plan and am pulling inspiration at the moment for these containers. I also bought a course on container gardening on Create Academy to help me intentionally plan for our container gardens. The teacher of the course, Arthur Parkinson, is amazing!

P.S. Use code WIT&DELIGHT15 to receive 15% off your purchase at Create Academy.

What are your spring gardening plans? Do you have any tips to share? I’d love to hear in the comments.

Spring Gardening Plans: A front yard garden in early spring.
The garden in our front yard

BY Kate Arends - April 11, 2022

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April 11, 2022 11:01 am

This year, I’m hoping to be more intentional about my garden. I want to be more involved in it (weeding is shockingly therapeutic!) and spend more time making smart choices. Adding in more colour and vibrancy is high on my list, but I want to do it the right way so that the colour works and will thrive year after year.

Even better, choose colorful flowers that attract
April 11, 2022 8:47 pm
Reply to  Kailey

Even better, choose colorful flowers that attract pollinators. Just Google it. They need all the help we can give them!

April 11, 2022 9:21 pm

I love the color of the sunflowers I already have some started and the Miracles all the way around the front I have them started already in my foyer I just love planning the flowers I think they’re beautiful to look at enjoy

Mindy Yates
April 11, 2022 3:39 pm

Last summer, I hired a master gardener in my area I hitch is NW Arkansas. Best decision! For some reason, I couldn’t grasp what I was trying to do- it seemed like I was spinning my wheels. Now, I have a list to tackle myself as well as bigger plantings for our landscaping crew and some additional hard scape we will implement. We tackled a bunch last year, and I feel better than ever as everything is emerging now. Can’t wait to follow along on your journey. Hiring someone was well worth your investment!

April 11, 2022 9:29 pm

Walkabout Outdoor is another local Twin Cities gardening / landscaping company that does amaaaaazing work! They are based in Northeast and are an extremely talented crew, I highly recommend checking them out.

Andrea s
April 11, 2022 9:54 pm

I can talk about gardening all day even though I am basically *clueless*! There is such a steep learning curve and I love the idea of gardening and planning for the person I am now versus the person I hope to be in 10 years! That is so freeing. I had grand plans for my garden that I know will overwhelm me and stress me out all summer so I’m just going to pick one area and one focus this year and hopefully that will be established. Thanks Kate!

April 12, 2022 6:52 am

Have you considered power-washing your bricks? Easy DIY with amazing results. I power-washed all the concrete surrounding our pool and the walkway to our front door, and the results were incredible – the concrete had large patches of black that went back to gray, and overall it just looked brighter/lighter. That process is also oddly delightful – get some closed-toe shoes, music, and start spraying away the dinge! #powerwashingporn is a thing

April 12, 2022 4:55 pm

I know that house! I run past it on the path, the hill is rough lol. Lovely and inspiring garden.

April 24, 2022 7:22 am

Oh my goodness, I’ve been watching the trailer for that container gardening class over and over this past week…. this might be my sign to treat myself and buy it!

April 25, 2022 12:53 pm

One of the things I’ve found challenging over the years is accepting what actually grows where I live and giving up on plants that are gorgeous but just don’t thrive in the PNW. It can be so hard to reconcile some of the amazing inspo gardens with what’s practical/possible.

May 15, 2022 11:57 am

I FINALLY broke down and hired help. It’s hard to admit one can’t get it all done on our own so I bit the bullet and by hiring help my buildings and greenhouse are clean, the grounds is shaping up and most of the vegetables garden is planted.
I’m not planting as many pots to care for, as I’ve decided less is more and I will do better, care wise, with what I have. Warm weather, where are you?

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