On our way to rent a rototiller from Home Depot, we stopped at a house with a "Rototilling" sign in the yard. My husband asked the man how much it would cost to have him rototill our little corner of yard. The man said $65.
We decided to rent from HD instead at a cost of $35 for four hours, or $50 for twenty-four hours. When we were done with the rototilling, we almost stopped at this man's house again just to tell him that his $65 would have been well worth it.
The rototiller is hard to hang onto - it takes about every muscle in your body. Getting our little corner of yard tilled up took about three hours and several blisters and aching back, shoulder, leg, and especially forearm muscles. But we managed it. And my husband got the rest of the rotten stump out and the root system that was shallow enough to be in the way of the garden.
We tilled it added some old compost where it was needed, smoothed it out, and then planted. One more time, here are some before and after pictures.
We planted corn, peas, tomatoes, green beans, zucchini, spinach, carrots, a few large sunflowers, a few small sunflowers, and some calendula flowers. The large sunflowers will be for the birds. The small sunflowers will be for our table, and the calendula flowers will be to look at and to harvest for their petals. Their petals can be made into preparations to put on cuts and burns, etc.
Here are a few pictures of some things in my front yard.
I'm not a good gardener because I can't remember the names of these bushes that we planted in front of the house a couple of years ago. I absolutely love them when they are in bloom:
I also don't know the name of this plant. I saved it from the back corner of the back yard before hoeing it clean of everything. It's now in the front yard by the lamp post along with some pots of geraniums. All I know about is that it's a perennial:
The red and white-blooming plants in the lower left are azaleas:
Now we wait while the freshly planted back garden does its thing.