...Considering we had first seen a landscaper who wanted $23,000 to do the front and backyards, with irrigation systems.
Total cost of what we've done:
-$1,300 for grass sods and good top soil (The Grass Patch)
-$290 for 7 cubic yards of gravel (3/4'-1'1/4) that did actually both the riverwal AND the driveway
-$200 of lawn edging
-$24 for 1 cubic yard of mulch
-$150-$200 of plants and flowers
-$64 for the lattice beneath the deck
-$50 for hoses and sprinklers
-$150 tools (new shovel, leaves vacuum/blower and metal reciprocating saw)
TOTAL: $2,238!!! So, less than 10% of what was originally bid.
Of course, it took us longer, but... :)