Retro Front Yard Patio

A cedar wall adds privacy to the retro patio that adorns this front yard.
Desperate No More!
Desperate No More!

America's Most Desperate Landscape 2015: Before and After Pictures 24 Photos

Tour the finished yard, complete with fan-voted features.

Texas Transformation: Desperate No More

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We asked you, our readers, to help us reimagine the home exterior for the recipients of the 2014 America's Most Desperate Landscape makeover. Take a look at the results.

Nice People With a Not-So-Nice Yard

Meet Jason and Connie and their dog Mayzee. They own a unique custom-built home on 2-1/2 acres in Texas Hill Country. The yard is big, but before we came along, it was barren in some spots and overgrown in other areas. We completely overhauled their desperate landscape and turned it into a space where Jason, Connie and Mayzee can relax, entertain and run free. Check it out.

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Before The Makeover

Before Connie and Jason acquired this place, the house was home to Connie’s father’s construction business and her brother-in-law's contracting business. So the yard was never manicured for family leisure time, it was used to park dump trucks and heavy equipment.

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

After: New Exterior

Viola! No walls or windows were replaced, but the house looks completely different thanks to a new coat of paint, board-and-batten shutters and a timber-framed pergola over the entry. The lush landscaping makes for a park-like setting. Instead of a water-hungry lawn, drought-tolerant plants and low-maintenance groundcovers were used because they’re more likely to thrive in the hot, dry climate. The tiered fountain lends an elegant Southwestern flair and complements the stucco-surfaced home.

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Before: The Gazebo

In the front yard is a covered patio. The neighbors think the double-domed pink structure is hideous, but Connie loves the gazebo and all the shade it provides.

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

After: New Surroundings

Before we started the makeover, we asked our readers to vote on some of the landscape plans. One of the elements you voted for was the pretty tiered fountain. Good choice. It makes the yard feel like a park or botanical garden.

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Before: Just an Uncomfortable Bench

The gazebo has an interesting story. Connie’s dad knew some masonry workers who were hired to build the structures at a San Antonio library. They needed a place to practice their work, so Connie’s father offered up his property. Inside the domes, the ceiling is lined with intricate brickwork, similar to that used by the Mexican brick culture of the Rio Grande Valley.

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

After: Home Away From Home

The gazebo has become a beautiful outdoor kitchen, living and dining room. The floor was lined with square patio pavers (which you voted for). Up above, wrought-iron candle chandeliers cast light down on the wicker furniture (which you also voted for). In the background sits the new fireplace and pizza oven.

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Before: Not Too Inviting

The front entry is a little less than welcoming. The grass is almost as brown as the wood beams while the mixed-match concrete and patio pavers makes for a dangerous trip hazard.

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

After: Draws You Right In

Two of the design choices you voted for were the paint color for the door and the new house numbers. Nice work. The Spanish-red door is a perfect accompaniment to the soft adobe-colored stucco and mahogany-stained pergola. The modern font used for the house numbers gives the entry a contemporary vibe.

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Before: What is This Spot Used For?

Connie and Jason are world travelers who have worked their way through many countries. They spent a summer on a farm in New Zealand, taught English in Austria and Korea and ran a canoe sightseeing business in Prague. They’ve seen some of the most beautiful gardens in the world and would love to bring a little bit of that beauty into their own yard.

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

After: Nice Spot for Morning Coffee

The old dilapidated patio cover was removed and replaced with a line of palms, a welcoming walkway and a turquoise cafe set.

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Celebrate!

The homeowners and Desperate Landscapes host Jason Cameron celebrate with some ice-cold beverages. (Mayzee got a big doggie biscuit!)

Photo By: Sarah Wilson/ Getty Images ©2014, DIY Network/Scripps Networks, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Dramatic Before-and-Afters From DIY Network's Desperate Landscapes

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What's more embarrassing than a hideous front yard? A front yard that's so bad even the neighbors are complaining. Check out these transformations, and see how host Jason Cameron added curb appeal to these formerly desperate landscapes.

Meet Morgan and Mindi Rich

Eager to start their lawn makeover, Morgan and Mindi strike a pose with host Jason Cameron.

Before: Weedy Lawn

This bare yard is begging for a little TLC. The weedy yard lacks color and texture and offers only one small tree in the way of landscaping.

After: Bold and Bright

Lush plants and a charming gravel parking lot bring interest and drama to the once basic home.

Meet Sidney Davis

Jason and Sidney teamed up to redo Sidney's small, mint green home as a part of Rebuilding Together New Orleans.

Before: Cookie Cutter

Sidney knew a thing or two about hard work and was eager to help with his landscape transformation.

After: Personal and Stylish

A salmon-pink home sets Sydney apart from his neighbors, while pretty and practical trees provide a bit of privacy.

Meet Mike and Claudia Ratterman

Mike and Claudia were a cute couple living in a cute home. The only problem? Their landscaping could use a spruce.

©2008, DIY Network

Before: Totally Dull

Known for its elegant style and ornamental facade, this attractive Tudor home lacks the same detailed look in its landscaping.

©2008, DIY Network

After: Cheery Surprise

Now, structural plants and bright pops of yellow mimic the home's sharp lines and interesting details.

©2008, DIY Network

Meet Marcy and Ryan Hessling

For Marcy and Ryan, a boring home just wouldn't do, so they hoped to display their fun, carefree personalities through the landscape remodel.

Before: Bare Bones

Though it's obvious the house is stunning, it wasn't reaching its full potential with a drab paint job and no landscaping to speak of.

After: Colorful Showstopper

A gorgeous iron gate, blue stone walkway and patio, bright hues on the home and colorful details all around gave this home a bright, spirited renewal.

Before: Rocky Start

A yard entirely of rocks proved to be a big job for Jason Cameron as he worked to improve this unique landscape.

After: Artfully Artificial

To conserve water in this Las Vegas lawn, an artificial lawn was installed along with desert-hardy plants.

Meet Kathy and Billy Baruth

Billy and his wife Kathy, a popular morning show DJ in Chicago, were surrounded by beautiful houses with perfectly manicured lawns. Theirs stuck out like a sore thumb.

Photo By: Jean-Marc Giboux/Getty Images

Before: Awkward and Unruly

Wild weeds and a hidden front door made this lawn look unkempt and forgotten, the perfect candidate for a total front yard renovation.

Photo By: Jean-Marc Giboux/Getty Images

After: Polished Plantings

After cutting down a large diseased tree, several other small trees were placed around the home's perimeter.

Photo By: Jean-Marc Giboux/Getty Images

Before: Out of Sight, Out of Mind

A front door that can't be seen from the road wasn't given much attention before the makeover.

Photo By: Jean-Marc Giboux/Getty Images

After: Custom Retreat

The new front door area features a cedar bridge and a custom slate waterfall fountain. A pair of rustic railroad ties pulls the look together.

Photo By: Jean-Marc Giboux/Getty Images

Before: Small but Sweet

In a neighborhood where only 25 feet separates your door from your neighbor's door, space is at a premium.

After: Neighborhood Knock-Out

Despite the close quarters, Jason Cameron is able to give this sweet home major curb appeal, complete with a newly painted door, fresh plants, new stairs and even a new paver walkway.

Meet Jeff and Robin Ankeny

Jeff, a wine broker, along with his wife Robin, a cake ball baker, are ready to turn their mid-century modern home into the showstopper they know it can be.

Photo By: Shannon Faulk / Getty Images

Before: Enter if You Dare

This Dallas home looks more like a fortress than a house with the huge brick wall surrounding the entrance.

Photo By: Shannon Faulk / Getty Images

After: Warm Welcome

With the brick wall removed and a spacious deck added, the homeowners are ready to throw a party. A cheery yellow door, funky outdoor art and a great place to sit and relax make this house the perfect place to entertain.

Photo By: Shannon Faulk / Getty Images

Meet Bethany and Michael Davidson

It looks like Jason's landscaping plans are more than Bethany and Michael expected for their Cincinnati home.

Photo By: Chris Cone/Getty Images

Before: A Blank Slate

Before the makeover, this home lacked the cozy, cottage feel so prominent in Tudor-style homes.

Photo By: Chris Cone/Getty Images

After: Country Cottage Style

A new iron railing and colorful door give this Tudor home a soft, welcoming look. A group of shrubs and flowers in various sizes add interest to the home's main entrance.

Photo By: Chris Cone/Getty Images

Meet Jason and Jennifer Hargis

Artist Jason and his wife Jennifer have a home full of beautiful art, but the outside of their house was in need of a touch up.

Photo By: Chris Cone/Getty Images

Before: Boring in Beige

For being the home of an artist, this house was definitely lacking personal flair.

Photo By: Chris Cone/Getty Images

After: Paint and Planters

A fresh coat of paint and stainless steel planters give the home a cozier, lived-in look that is a major improvement from the lifeless before.

Photo By: Chris Cone/Getty Images

Meet Jackie Witt and David Scarano

All bets are off when two professional poker players join forces with Jason to give their Spanish Tudor home a much-needed makeover.

Before: Desolate Desert

This dreary before was so bad, it's no wonder the neighbors called in for landscape help!

After: A Neighborhood Favorite

No longer the neighborhood eyesore, this remade lawn boasts palm trees, a lush green lawn and even a new garage door.

Meet Emma and Trask McFarland

For Emma and Trask, who live on a farm, hard work outdoors is an everyday occurence.

Photo By: Mark Cornelison/ AP Images

Before: Just the Basics

Affectionately called "The Big Black Box," this mini farm house is already swimming in personality. Unfortunately, the surrounding landscape could use a lot of work.

Photo By: Mark Cornelison/ AP Images

After: Home Sweet Home

No longer just a building sitting on the farm, a pretty new walkway and trees that frame the house finally make this micro home look like it belongs.

Photo By: Mark Cornelison/ AP Images

Meet Edward Wilkerson

It looks like homeowner Edward Wilkerson is ready to get to work on this one-day landscape makeover.

Photo By: Jean-Marc Giboux/Getty Images

Before: Nothing There

This Chicago home was just begging for a little landscape love with its bare yard and lack of color.

Photo By: Jean-Marc Giboux/Getty Images

After: Like a Brand-New Home

In only one day, the Desperate Landscapes crew turned this basic arts and crafts style house into a fun, vibrant home, complete with a new gate and beautiful wooden porch.

Photo By: Jean-Marc Giboux/Getty Images

Before: America's Most Desperate Landscape

And the 2013 winner for America's Most Desperate Landscape goes to...this sad, boring front yard full of wasted potential.

After: From Desperate to Dazzling

The new landscape features a paved driveway, a quaint walkway, impressive plantings and a cool planter wall made of boulders.

Meet Daniella and Peter Vaclavik

After paying for an expensive surgery for their dog, Daniella and Peter didn't have much money left to get professional help for their landscaping. That's where Jason and his crew came in.

Before: A Postponed Project

Before the landscaping overhaul, the view from outside the home showcased sparse plants, plenty of weeds and a house in need of a new paint job.

After: Unique Flair

The fabulous new yard features a new walkway and patio, a one-of-a-kind wall mural and grass that works well in the intense Miami heat.

Meet Catherine and Kyle Reynolds

These newlyweds are eager to transform their yard from an ugly before to an enchanting happily ever after.

Before: Where's the Sidewalk?

Weeds and dead plants take up the entire hill in front of the Reynold's home, and the sidewalk is no where to be seen.

After: A Step Up

New steps make it so much easier to access the home, while a retaining wall and plenty of gorgeous new plants make the most of the hilly terrain.

Meet Riley and Carmen Ralmuto

These young newlyweds are hoping for a front porch as hip as they are, and Jason knows just how to make it happen.

Photo By: Shannon Faulk / Getty Images

Before: Feeling Blue

Dark and cluttered, this dreary entrance didn't reflect the fun, lively personalities of the young homeowners.

Photo By: Shannon Faulk / Getty Images

After: Young Love

A lighter and brighter paint job transformed the old blue entrance, while a pretty new porch rail and a yard full of succulents give the home a much more inviting look.

Photo By: Shannon Faulk / Getty Images

Meet Anthony and Natalie Armendariz

Anthony and Natalie prepare for the long hours of work ahead of them as they get ready to turn a yard full of dirt into a landscape they can actually love.

Before: All Dirt

A yard lacking greenery is a depressing site to say the least. Perhaps they tried to make up for it with their avocado green door?

After: A Welcoming Site

The house is lightened up with a fresh coat of paint, while the new Rookwood Terra Cotta door is bright and welcoming. A brand-new walkway leads to the Limestone Veneer Porch, which is surrounded by a sea of lush, textural plants.

Desperation Turnaround: America's Most Desperate Landscape 2012

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Jason Cameron and the Desperate Landscapes crew undertake their year's toughest makeover project at the end of a long search for America's most curb appeal-challenged yard.

America's Most Desperate Landscape 2012

In its annual nationwide search for America's Most Desperate Landscape, DIY Network ultimately found just what it was looking for at the Derby, Conn., home of Patty and Cas Stochmal. The home's dilapidated front exterior was overgrown, unsightly and downright unsafe. Enter landscaping pro Jason Cameron and the Desperate Landscapes crew for their biggest curb appeal makeover project of the year.

Before

Earlier, a contractor debacle and an unfinished garage-addition project resulted in a home improvement disaster. Moreover, the yard had become so overgrown and turned into such a neighborhood eyesore that neighbors (at least for the purposes of the "Most Desperate Landscape" entry video) took up the role of angry villagers and started an uprising.

After

More than 250 new plantings, a new turf lawn, and a reworked walkway and front facade help soften the street view and transform the Stochmal's residence into one of the neighborhood's more visually appealing homes.

Before

At the home's side entrance, a tattered banner tarp covers a portion of the exterior where siding is missing.

After

In a first for Desperate Landscapes, this home makeover includes the addition of a screened porch where the distressed side entrance had been. All-new landscaping surrounds the porch addition. Adding the new porch required demolishing the damaged brick stairs that previously led to the side door.

Before

A garage with no driveway, crumbling stairs and two separate front entrances made for a frightening first impression for this home.

After

Thirty tons of boulders were used in the landscape makeover, including for the two-tiered retaining wall and planting area where a weed-infested hillside once was. A row of 20 densely planted boxwoods creates a green fence.

Before

As part of the unfinished garage project, the old sidewalk and concrete steps along the front of the house had been partially demolished and reduced to rubble. What was left was an actual safety hazard.

After

The transformation includes a completed and newly paved driveway, specially designed stairs with extra-wide 14-inch tread and a completely reconfigured walk-up to the home's front door.

And Done

The Stochmal's house, built some 50 years earlier by Cas Stochmal's father, gets reinvigorated with a well-deserved upgrade. As a tribute to the home's history and the care that went into the structure years before, a section at the top and center of the new walkway is fashioned from bricks that were part of the home's original hand-laid brick walk. Cas' cherished stone lions were also preserved and incorporated into the newly designed front entrance.

Top 10 Ways to Go Big in Your Landscaping

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Add super-sized curb appeal to your house with these high-impact landscaping ideas.

#10 Columns

Replacing worn porch columns is an easy way to beef up the appearance of your porch.

#9 Wide Steps

Make your entry grand by widening the steps up to your front door.

#8 Outdoor Room

Whether it's a gazebo or simply a couple of benches in a cozy garden nook, create a relaxing getaway in the landscape.

#7 Big Planters

Add super-sized planters to create a dramatic entyway garden.

#6 Layer Your Landscaping

Create interest and dimension in your landscape beds with low, mid-sized and tall plants.

#5 Retaining Walls

A retaining wall can add usable space to a slope. Get professional help for any wall more than two feet tall.

#4 Stones Paths

Natural stone pathways and stairs add an organic look with a lot of class.

#3 Walkways

A welcoming walkway can make all the difference in your curb appeal.

#2 Lush Lawn

Make your neighbors green with envy by laying fresh sod.

#1 Big Trees

Large evergreens or ornamental trees provide distinct personality to a landscape.

Meet the Host

Jason Cameron

After working his way through college as a carpenter, the DIY Network host turned his passions for home improvement and landscaping into a career as a licensed contractor.
All About Jason

About the show

Nothing is more embarrassing than having the ugliest yard on the block — especially when your neighbors call you out. Armed with creative solutions, licensed contractor Jason Cameron transforms a negligent neighbor's troubled yard into an outdoor showplace — in only one day. From new planting beds and big, new trees to fresh paint and fencing, DIY Network's Desperate Landscapes is all about going from helpless to beautiful!
Season 9, Episode 6

Join the Club

The O'Gradys live on a street filled with garden club members, and they just don't fit in. That's why they've turned to DIY Network licensed contractor, Jason Cameron to help. Jason's brining in an excavator to rip out the old before he bring in the new. He fixes up the house with a new fiberglass door, a fieldstone entryway and a gravel walkway. See how steel edging and weed fabric will ensure the walkway won't walk away.

Wednesday
Apr 1
5pm | 4c
Season 8, Episode 2

A P.R. Disaster

Kristie is a successful professional in the public relations industry, but she has a P.R. disaster on her hands when it comes to her landscape. Her roommates and neighbors are tired of looking at this eyesore and are ready for a change - and fast! That's Jason's call to bring in custom shutters, a cool new Quartzite flooring for the porch and a monster stump grinder to clear out the landscape.

Friday
Apr 17
12pm | 11c
Season 9, Episode 11

The Snowbird Migration

The Danjals were excited to move from snowy Canada to sunny Miami, but they fell out of their neighbor's good graces when the landscape fell apart. DIY Network's Jason Cameron heads to the beach to buil. a one of a kind modern wall. Plus, he brings in tons of tropical plants and transplants a 20 foot palm!

Monday
Apr 27
11:30am | 10:30c
Season 11, Episode 7

An Arts & Crafts Style Landscape for a Windy City Bungalow

Jason Cameron and his Desperate Landscapes crew create an Arts and Crafts style landscape at an old Chicago bungalow. The design includes a custom-built cedar porch, a cool copper awning, a brick walkway and a beautiful wooden gate. Jason also plants a landscape filled with prairie style plantings that will thrive in Chicago's cold winter weather.

Thursday
May 7
12am | 11c
Season 11, Episode 11

Saddle Up for a Native Landscape for The Herd in Fort Worth, Texas

Jason Cameron saddles up and plays cowboy as he helps The Herd in Fort Worth, Texas create a new entrance for their non-profit educational center and pen. Jason teaches the cowboys to use their shovels for something other than manure as they add native cacti, grasses and shrubs to the landscape. Jason uses reclaimed brick to create a huge new walkway with a basket weave pattern, and he tries his hand at branding. He's not branding any steer, but he is branding The Herd's new entrance with a unique sign. The final work is something the entire Fort Worth Stockyards historic district can be proud of.

Wednesday
May 13
9pm | 8c
Season 10, Episode 5

The Old Firehouse

The Griffiths are turning an old firehouse into their new home, and Jason Cameron is bringing in the brigade to help them complete the transformation outside. He's helping the homeowners lay a new paver patio and put in a new flagpole. Plus, he's bringing a custom fire hydrant fountain and a new stain glass window. Will Jason's hard work put out the fiery complaints from neighbors?

Wednesday
May 20
9:30pm | 8:30c
Season 10, Episode 2

Newcomers to the Neighborhood

Neighborhood newcomers, Erynn and Henry, want to fit in and make their yard an entertainment haven for friends and family, but the weeds have gotten in the way. That's Jason Cameron's call to action. He's creating a patio, picnic table and a creative fireplace in the front yard to get the Casanovas fired up about their landscape.

Thursday
May 21
12am | 11c
Season 12, Episode 5

Bringing Beauty Back to a Historic Home

Jes Mayer and her two sons saved up for months to buy an old home in Cincinnati. The house has a huge yard for Jes's sons to play in, but with a big yard came more work than Jes could handle. Jason's plan to breathe new life into this old beauty is to create a beautiful landscape. The plan calls for tons of crushed stone to create a Victorian circle driveway as well as a new patio. Stone stairs will be added leading to an arbor to the left of the front door, and the home's old front door gets a facelift to create a landscape that fits with the house and the whole neighborhood.

Saturday
Jun 6
2pm | 1c
Season 11, Episode 4

Fixing an Artist's Ugly Landscape With Stainless Steel, Paint and Plants

Jason Cameron brings his Desperate Landscapes crew to an artist's ugly front yard. The artist's home features funky and fun artwork inside, but the front of the house is hidden by a huge six-foot wall and overgrown trees. Jason uses a concrete saw to cut the wall in half and a chainsaw to take down a tree. Once the landscape is opened up, Jason adds stainless steel planters to some unused arches. He adds a Pennsylvania Quartzite cap to the smaller wall and adds a custom-built stainless steel awning over the front door. If that weren't enough, there are custom-built stainless steel planters that fit over the front stoop, and homeowner Jason Hargis's artistic skills are put to the test by painting some funky planters for the entry way. The look is completed with a fresh coat of paint for the house and front door and some new furniture for the patio.

Thursday
Jun 18
3:30am | 2:30c
Season 12, Episode 7

Banishing Desperation With Fire, Water and a Bit of New Mexican Sun

Jason Cameron heads to Albuquerque to help Wendy and Adam Livermore. The homeowners are renovating a foreclosure, and these Wisconsin transplants know nothing about landscaping in New Mexico. Jason's plan to help banish their desperation includes building a new deck featuring the Zia sun, an important part of the culture in New Mexico. A beautiful wooden loggia with a sailcloth cover will add shade to the yard. A fire feature will keep the homeowners warm at night and a water feature will add a relaxing touch. The front yard will also include a living wall and plenty of plants that thrive in the Albuquerque sun. Is all this enough to stop the neighbors' complaints? Jason thinks the answer will be a resounding yes.

Monday
Jun 22
7pm | 6c
Season 10, Episode 5

The Old Firehouse

The Griffiths are turning an old firehouse into their new home, and Jason Cameron is bringing in the brigade to help them complete the transformation outside. He's helping the homeowners lay a new paver patio and put in a new flagpole. Plus, he's bringing a custom fire hydrant fountain and a new stain glass window. Will Jason's hard work put out the fiery complaints from neighbors?

Saturday
Apr 16
7:30am | 6:30c
Season 9, Episode 5

A Tropical Depression

The Aguerres' front yard doesn't fit in with the lush tropical neighborhood of Pembroke Pines, Fla. DIY Network's Jason Cameron and his team bring the Aguerres' love for Key West into their landscape to appease their complaining neighbors. Watch as Jason brings out the excavator to demo a huge concrete wall and replace it with metal fabricated paneled walls that provide privacy for the homeowners and eye-candy for the neighbors. Jason also transforms one of those walls into a glass tiled water feature in the front and adds a special surprise for the homeowners' eyes only.

Monday
Apr 25
12pm | 11c
Season 12, Episode 12

Bringing an Ocean Vibe to an Oceanside Desperate Landscape

Samantha and Vince love their home in Oceanside, California. They love being close to the beach and spend as much free time there as their jobs allow but they don't have a lot of time to spare. They have been rehabbing the inside of their home and Vince is a Marine Reservist and Samantha works as an animal trainer at Sea World. The first order of business is to get rid of a fence that's falling apart and to clear some ugly trees and debris. Jason's plan calls for building a new fence with a modern style to help keep their dog corralled. They build some custom surfboard lights and add a new paver patio and redwood fireplace for Sam and Vince to relax with friends.

Tuesday
Jun 21
1pm | 12c

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