Obviously the Canadian winter leaves very little room for getting out there and landscaping, but it does provide an ideal time to do some research and make plans. I recently completed some continuing education gardening courses, and have already made a plan for transforming the hardscaping with containers. These will be put in placeover the May long weekend.
The biggest job will be shortening the garage, which has had an extension added by a previous owner, that eats up a lot of space in our tiny garden. Let’s put a spring ETA on that. 2 years ago
Had a guy design and landscape the river side garden. 3 years ago
We made some progress this summer—more clean up, mostly, but we also learned about and grew cannas, water lilies and other water plants, vegetables and herbs.
In 2009, we hope to finally come up with a plan. We think we need professional help for this.
With or without professional help, we seem to be ready to commit to a few projects, some of which will likely be completed in 2009: a hoop house and three raised beds for vegetables. We may do a greenhouse project this year, too. 4 years ago
Answer: finish the flagstone border along the flower beds that the previous owners put in. They also left a fifty pound bag of mortar that I’ve put to good use.
This wasn’t too hard a project – buy flagstones, sort by shape, separate the useful long pieces, find the stones that look good enough to fit the top of the wall, choose large stones for the base, and break up remaining pieces as needed to get long, flat edges to face the wall.
Took a better part of a day to do around 7 feet of wall. 4 years ago
There’s still a stretch that’s unpaved, but the part that’s done looks pretty wonderful. 4 years ago
The infamous garden path still isn’t done, so I took some time this week to dig out another 25 feet or so of path, frame the path edge, and put in the flagstones.
This was the important bit of path to accomplish, so having it (nearly) done was a big goal for my time off. The last stretch was really a starter; it was nice to get rid of the bare dirt, but this stretch goes through our “secret garden”, a five foot wide strip along the side of the house. It’s gone through different incarnations; some years, we’ve done a nice job of planting and tending the plants, and in other years we’ve ignored it. We’ve had prolific tomatoes, had a flowering artichoke, and grown snapdragons and begonias. Other years, we’ve just ignored it and we’ve ended up with a couple stunted plants and a lot of dry soil. Hopefully the path will enourage us to clean up this side yard, and will keep us coming outside to tend it.
Only took removing a ton of soil, bringing in 750 pounds of flagstones, and hauling ten or so bags of sand in.
Tomorrow: work at making the path feel more solid by adding stones to press everything together, and start cleaning up that area of the yard. 4 years ago
I am so pleased with this goal right now. We have made a lot of progress and the garden is so close to being finished!
The rubble has been shifted and most of the gravel has been moved. We turned the soil/sand which was under the concrete and added layers of peat and top soil. Planted the lawn last weekend, still waiting for the seeds to start sprouting. Have added plants to the borders and they look beautiful. It’s much neater than before, as I had let everything get overgrown and messy. The plants are really thriving after being cut back and having some room to breathe. Potted up some gorgeous flowers – a dramatic-looking bleeding heart, and pink lilies which are just starting to flower, the buds are slowly opening up. We’ve also added a Japanese maple and some pretty variegated leafy plants which look a little sparse right now but will fill out after a while.
Jobs left to do:
-Small section of gravel that needs to be cleared off the path.
-Wash down the decking & path.
-Wait for lawn to grow!
-Reinforce the wobbly fence panel.
-Get more food for bird feeders. 4 years ago
Time spent shovelling gravel out of the garden on Saturday: 20 minutes. Need to build up a little arm muscle!
Time bf spent shovelling gravel out of the garden on Sunday in the rain: 5 minutes.
Time I spent washing the floors because of muddy welly prints: 20 minutes!!
Not such a great weekend in terms of amount of work done, but we did have a really nice BBQ on Saturday night so at least we are enjoying using the garden even if it doesn’t look very nice. 5 years ago
Okay, three days of work, and 25 feet of flagstone path (nearly) done. In my usual intelligent way, I made sure to do all the digging during the two days we had a heatwave. Today, with the cooler weather, all I did was pick up flagstones and sand, and lay them all. I ran a bag short of sand, so I still need to finish the last three or four feet.
Laying the flag stones is fun: grab some likely stones and place them, then start going through with smaller stones and scraps to fill in between. Because we’re just setting the stones in sand, I’ve found that the stones need to be packed tight to stay in place. My favorite trick: take one of the regular (12” across or so) stones, put one end up on another rock, and hit it with the hammer or a chisel til it breaks. Repeat til I’ve got a bunch of 2-3” across scraps. Then take two of the larger stones, and wiggle them apart so they’re pressed against other stones. Now, I place a likely-looking scrap between the two, and whap it with a sledgehammer til it fits in place or breaks into a better shape. This approach works surprisingly well, and it’s actually more fun to do the fitting than it is to attractively place the larger stones. It’s also lots of fun to feel the path feel steadier as I go on.
Next step: move on to the next forty feet of path. I’ll need to let a couple blisters on my hands heal. I’ll also need to buy a new mattock, for I managed to bend the head of our current one by hitting all the little rocks in the soil. I suspect all the previous owners of our house dumped all the bad soil, decorative rock, and construction leftovers along the side of the house where the path is going. 5 years ago
Our back garden is very unappealing. There’s a section of decking under the kitchen window against the house, and the rest is just concrete with gravel over the top. The plants are ugly, overgrown and unhealthy. We’ve been working hard the past couple of weekends and it’s starting to look a bit more promising. Bf smashed up the concrete in the main area of the garden, leaving a little path from the house to the garage. We’ve been shifting the gravel into the front garden and that’s about halfway done. We have a huge pile of broken up concrete to get rid of, need to get some rubble sacks and transport it to the tip. I’ve hacked up all of the plants and hedges that we don’t want to keep and they’re ready to be taken away for green recycling. Will try and shift the rest of the mess next weekend then I can layer in some soil and plant the lawn. 5 years ago