Monday, April 22, 2013

See, it looks a little different

We worked on and off in the yard this week, and then Hobs came over for a marathon gardening session on Sunday.  We:

  • buried the drip hose (thanks Mary!)
  • planted my birthday apple tree (thanks Dad!)
  • added a ton more topsoil as things settled
  • moved the big hydrangea
  • moved the lavender
  • moved something else that I don't know - perhaps a lily
  • leveled out the yard
  • set a path using the bluestone we found under the concrete
  • planted jasmine, thyme and clover seeds.

After all that, we're in a really good place for the ground cover to take off (hopefully!) and make the back stop looking like a dirt pit!

Monday, April 15, 2013

Springing it in with a vengeance

The backyard had a concrete path that led to nowhere - it was basically a sidewalk down the middle of the yard.  Since the path to nowhere bothered us, we decided to rip it out.  We rented a jackhammer, bought some topsoil to replace the concrete, and bribed friends with the promise of steaks, beer, and the use of a sledgehammer if they came to help.

Jackhammering was too much for me (I'm too short for leverage, and don't have the weight to overcome my height), but luckily our taller friends ruled it while Jaimee wielded the sledge to break up the pieces: 

Once the pieces were broken up, everyone pitched in to load them into bags and carry them out front.

I managed to avoid this heavy labor by spending my time building a "litter box" for Loki, as well as a compost box for the results of the dog-litter-box.  The team then filled the trench with topsoil (we need to get more), and covered it with weed fabric so we don't accidentally create a feral cat litterbox, and we re-routed the drip hoses for full yard coverage.  At the end of only a couple hours, we were done!

I know, it kind of looks exactly the same, since the weed cover is running where the concrete was.  But the ground cover seeds are growing well, and I've ordered some supplementary plants, so hopefully planting will take place soon and change the look!  We also discovered a lot of slate (and a mini-boulder) buried under the concrete - we saved it, and will figure out something to use it for.  Suggestions welcomed!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Maintenance March ends with a swear

...Maintenance is boring.  And sometimes frustrating.

To end up the month (there are still lots of tasks to do, but they'll just have to be worked in), Jaimee got a new garbage can, and labeled our garbage and recycling with our address.  I took my phone apart to replace the cracked screen, and managed to break the replacement screen while putting it back together.  Sigh.  Waiting for the replacement for the replacement (good thing Jaimee had a spare phone so I'm not totally out of touch).

I'd like something a little more exciting - so we're on to Spring it on April.  I started some groundcover seeds to replace the grass and the sedum that didn't handle Loki well.  In a couple weeks we're going to tear out the concrete path that's still back there and get the groundcover well started - hopefully!