Before & After: Ditching the Grass When it Refuses to Grow

before, shade, dead grass, mini mocha, backyard, makeover


I’m currently taking a break from a landscaping project that isn’t going as planned [surprise!] so I thought maybe I’d find a little encouragement by looking through some Before &  After photos. Seems to work like a charm every time, especially when the makeover is as great as this one is! The homeowner who writes the blog Mini Mocha was having a heck of a time growing grass in her shade-heavy yard, and after trying grass specifically grown for shady areas to no avail, she decided to move onto a bigger and better idea.



After a bit of time and effort, she had herself  a backyard with a sweet new deck and patio. I love how welcoming it is compared to the crunchy dead grass! I’d love to hang out here…it looks like a great space to get together with friends and chat over dinner and cocktails, doesn’t it?

Anyway, how is your yard coming along this year? Any big projects lately? If you have a great garden related makeover project that you would like to share with Studio ‘g’ readers please send us pictures and tell us about it! We’d love to hear from you. -erin

Images from Mini Mocha.

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  1. Tami on June 7, 2013 at 8:49 am

    Looks great, but did she really bury the trunks of those trees behind that retaining wall? That’s not good.

  2. The Garden Artist on June 7, 2013 at 10:53 am

    Great solution Rachel. We specialize in creating outdoor living spaces so I appreciate your solutions. In the future be careful of adding soil above the existing level of the soil grade; it will kill the tree. Having said that, I do like that you have added elevations to a formerly flat landscape. The combination of four mediums of hardscape (raw wood, concrete, pavers and finished wood) usually doesn’t work as far as congruity goes, but in your design it works, maybe because of the grid pattern you used to design the project. Finally, you’ve got a lot of great outdoor living space, but next time consider adding more planters to provide more elevation and soften the hardscape environment. All in all, good job. Please follow me at or on Blogger at The Garden Artist.

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