The beginning of this year and the spring was definitely a record setter for precipitation in Western New York. Early in May, we had received more than the normal amount...for the year! Like most yards around the area, we had some issues with ponding. The difference in our yard? The ponds never left!

Since Hank came along, it has been my goal to get the backyard at the house "useable." Our house was built in the 50's, like many other homes around the Hamburg area. Over time, the trees had grown so much that what was once level ground that drained well, had become an uneven yard that didn't.

To make it worse, a tree had grown so large, the roots had invaded most of the yard and were pushing on the house foundation and even pushed up the concrete pad around the pool! It was clear to us, the tree had to go.  Loss of shade? Yes. But even lack of sunlight had become an issue as the roof was collecting moss and the gutters were always filled with leaves and "helicopters."

After MONTHS of planning it out, thinking it over and getting contractors to look it over (most of which never returned calls, emails or text messages) I decided to tackle this one on my own!

Because the tree was so large, I had a company drop the tree and I agreed to cut it up, split it and get it cleaned up.  After 5 months, I finally got it done. Looking back, I should have had them do the entire job! The stump was a monster and there was no way I could have moved it on my own and it would take years to rot away. I called in my buddy Mike and his new stump machine to grind it up!

Fast forward a few weeks, ten yards of topsoil and 7 yards of stone, 200 feet of drain and hours of digging and moving roots out of the way...the back yard was level! Add 75 pounds of grass seed and hours of watering...the job was complete!

I can't say for sure that this was done "perfectly." But, after heavy rain, there is no standing water. The yard looks so big without the tree, the roof moss has dried up and the gutters are clean! I call it a success.



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