When we first moved into our house, It had a black wall-mounted mailbox that was awkwardly attached to the banister of the deck (if you look at the picture below, you can catch a glimpse of it just beyond my husband’s head, next to the top of the mailbox post).
The mailman mentioned to us that eventually this neighborhood would become a drive-only route and they would ask everyone to move to post mounted mailboxes off of the road – which we preferred anyway. It was something I admired often on pinterest, these lovely road-side post mounted mailboxes with gardens around them and beautiful street number signs, etc…! So I was not upset and we moved this plan to the forefront. Plus, to get your mail you have to always have an unobstructed path to the mailbox, and it was a lot of work to shovel an extra little path to the mailbox in our Maine winter. This removed that necessity.
This was done around May of 2015.
Since we’re quite low-budget folks, we didn’t go for anything fancy. We didn’t go with the cheapest post, opting to go one up and get the cedar one since it wasn’t substantially more, and we loved the coloring. We went with a simple black mailbox to go with it. We also picked up some cement. We borrowed a post hole digger from the in laws, and got to work! Living in a super rocky area (our house is built into a granite ledge) we figured it wouldn’t be easy, but just off the road wasn’t awful. with a little work we were able to dig down plenty to meet the measurements set by the USPS. Make sure to always check what the measurements are! The height, distance from the street, etc, all matter!
Anyway! After the hole was dug and measurements were quadruple checked, we went ahead and mixed the cement, then poured it in around the post in the hole. We didn’t fill the hole, leaving several inches on top.
Once it was dried, we went ahead and covered it with dirt.
Once it was in, we thought hard on what we wanted to do for our street number. At first I wanted to hang a little sign with the number “3” (our street number) on it… but we realized one of the biggest issues with our road is that many people get confused and think they are on a different road. I decided whatever we did, it MUST clearly state our full street address, to avoid confusion. With that in mind, I decided to contact a neighbor who does vinyl decal work. She said she would do it! and for a great price, so how could I not? I was hoping for a decorative decal with our last initial on it (“R”) and our address below it. When she made it to size, she felt it was too small, so she remade it at no extra cost (and let me have the smaller one… wow! Thank you!) so I ended up with two to work with. I put the extra large one on the side facing oncoming traffic, and put my smaller pretty one facing the rest of the neighborhood as they drive by to leave.
I took this opportunity to work on the garden a bit. I hope to eventually turn the area right around the mailbox into a little garden, and beyond that (which had been turned into MORE driveway by the previous owner… we have enough to fit 4 cars comfortably if we use that…) into grass, since we have very little non-ledge space to turn into a grassy yard for my daughter to play in. It will only be a 8x15ft space, but I thought it would be nice to have even a little. That is still a work in progress to this day, so you’ll see more of that fight to come! I started in the photo above with moving some rocks to line the area (and line what will be the edge of our driveway – which is partially paved currently, the rest is loose stone)
Above you can see the very start of the flowers! I purchased a small trellis that I thought would work great behind our mailbox. It’s actually made of vinyl, but the color it was painted matched the wood of our mailbox almost perfectly, so I went ahead and got it (can’t beat that for a few bucks!) and quickly went to get some clematis! We picked out Clematis “Ernest Markham”, which we felt was the closest to a true red we could find (since my garden is heavy in many colors, but lacking in true red) We haven’t gotten a full bloom yet, but I’m hoping this coming summer we will see it! Sometimes it takes a year or two for a small clematis like this one to give its first bloom.
Anyway! I knew this location would be hard for a clematis – they like full sun on their flowers, which this area could easily achieve, but they prefer roots to be shaded. As you can see above, with little else around it didn’t get much shade beyond the bit provided by the post of the mailbox. That in mind, I decided to look for a ground cover, perhaps a decorative grass. I had established a local garden plant swap group, and went to it seeking such.
And came back with this!
This picture doesn’t show it well, since it had just been planted and was looking a bit rough from the transplant. It has since filled out and grown back strong! We’re also in this photo just starting to try to bring grass back to the area beyond it, though I will need to layer on more new soil and grass seed (the person previous did a good job of packing it down with loose stone for a driveway… unfortunately)
I will definitely be making some more posts about the garden around my mailbox and the grass growing in the future, likely along with other gardening-related posts. So keep your eyes peeled and check back ❤
Ta ta for now!