Around the Painted House

For three months I’ve been giving the blow by blow on painting the exterior of the house. The color: Sandy Hook Gray by Benjamin Moore.

Front façade - before painting.
Front façade – before painting.

Finally it’s time for a walk-around.

Soon the olive trees flanking the ramp will go inside and the ramp will be put away.
Soon the olive trees flanking the ramp will go inside and the ramp will be put away.

We’ll be considering foundation planting in spring.  Part of the issue will be to mask the electric meter.

Before -- front and west side
Before painting — front and west side
We've laid plastic and cardboard on the ground until we grade and plant to keep the red clay from splashing up onto the newly painted siding.
We’ve laid plastic and cardboard on the ground until we grade and plant to keep the red clay from splashing up onto the newly painted siding.

Walking left toward the side porch, this is the driveway side of the house and the side that is seen by anyone approaching from the street.

The windows in the new addition are more haphazardly placed that the original windows.
The windows in the new addition are more haphazardly placed that the original windows.

Farther down the driveway the old house (on the right) and new addition (on the left)  blend together.  The door on the porch used to be our kitchen window before the renovation.

We love the extra windows in the kitchen bump -out.
We love the extra windows in the kitchen bump -out.

As we look around the back corner the kitchen bump-out is conspicuous.

On the back of the house the siding is finished but the oil tank will also need a coat of house color.
On the back of the house the siding is finished but the oil tank will also need a coat of house color.

The back of the house has new additions flanking the original dining room (double windows), the two-story kitchen/master bathroom addition on the right and the conservatory on the left.

I like how complex the house looks now with the additions.
I like how complex the house looks now with the additions.

Continuing east the conservatory replaces our old porch and adds a full bath on the ground floor.

We'll be putting the shutters away for winter and start working on them in spring.
We’ll be putting the shutters away for winter and start working on them in spring.

The living room and conservatory have east facing walls.

The American boxwood is the only shrub from before the renovation that wasn't destroyed by excavation.
The American boxwood is the only shrub from before the renovation that wasn’t destroyed by excavation.

And finally the southeast corner takes us back around to the front.

After looking at all the photos of the painted house Charlie and I have discussed a few more painting projects that we’ll mock-up and work on when the weather is nice. You might be surprised.

What favorite or versatile shrub can you recommend?

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Author: Jo

Welcome to The Glade, where the second generation of renovations has just begun and the mania about our home, music and other passions fill our days and nights. We’re Charlie and Jo in the music world; Mary Jo and Charles to family; and JoJo and Charlie to each other. We are renovating a midcentury house in a Victorian historic district where we want to live there the rest of our lives. It's a 1946 house located in Maryland. We were married in this house. Thus far (pre-blog) we refinished cabinets, added a window seat (still working on the cushion), rearranged a wall in the guest house due to sink/vanity replacement, planted a vegetable garden, and other quick and not-so-quick fixes. So this latest zeal for construction is the result of my having lived here since 1997 and feeling a need to ready the house for the next chapter and beyond.

10 thoughts on “Around the Painted House”

  1. All right, we can resurrect my high school side job doing landscape designs. If you’re feeling brave (and burly) you could try digging up that boxwood and moving it. I successfully transplanted an 80 year old nana gracilis Hinoki falsecypress with a crew of like 4 friends when I was 17 after my neighbors couldn’t get a professional landscaper to take on the liability. (They’re friends of mine; otherwise I probably should have made them sign a liability waiver.) But it’s totally fine where it is so it would probably be saner to just put something new in front of the meter. I think something kinda big might work nicely at that corner of the house, but the typical tall arborvitae would be a mistake. If your soil is relatively rich you might be able to do some kind of not-so-big holly there. Even if it did grow out of its desired bounds, you can hat rack them and they’ll fill in again before long. I’d like to see oak leaf hydrangeas near the wing to the right and stick with smallish things otherwise in the front.

    1. Your advice is well-taken. I have no problem leaving the box where it is. Holly does very well on our hill. I also have 4 oak leaf hydrangeas ready to go into the ground. Thanks, Chad. Jo

    1. It used to be on the side and when it was replaced they insisted on the front because (they said) the wire couldn’t go through the new porch roof. I’ll hide it as best I can. Jo

  2. When I bought my house long ago, all the “foundation plantings” were just that: planted about 6 in. from the foundation, and leaning outward from the house. I’ve learned to make those planting beds several feet deep so I can plant a colorful combination of plants. Make it a garden, not a planting strip. Then they can grow a little larger without being cramped. Plus, if you’re planting lawn, it reduces the amount of grass you’ll have to mow!

    1. The plan is definitely deep beds with lots of varied colors. Our yard gets a lot of shade so the color will mostly come from shade-loving evergreens. Jo PS Your yard is a wonderful inspiration.

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