What we did in the holidays!!

posted in: Gardening, home | 5

Hi everyone. Sorry to vanish like that for a little while. Although we don’t celebrate Christmas, we have still been super busy around here, mostly in the manual labour department! Warning – there are lots of sunny photos of our yard ahead. You should be wearing a hat and some sunscreen – don’t forget to drink plenty of water too!

DH has had his first lot of holidays since, well, since we moved in I think. It’s been a long time coming. You think that he’d be doing a lot of feet up, television watching and couch napping. Not my man! He’s been in full forward mode. We have achieved a LOT in a short space of time. We have turned THIS….. (2 months ago)

This is the start of the lawn "L" shape. There will be a bed of shrubs and shade tolerant plants on the left against the fence, and some strappy grasses etc on the right amongst the mulch.
This is the start of the lawn “L” shape. There will be a bed of shrubs and shade tolerant plants on the left against the fence, and some strappy grasses etc on the right amongst the mulch.
The lawn will continue around the corner, giving some nice green to the view from the deck, as will the grasses etc continue around the outside of the deck.
The lawn will continue around the corner, giving some nice green to the view from the deck, as will the grasses etc continue around the outside of the deck.
We mixed bags of garden soil with decomposed straw from the chicken's yard, then added more straw on top for mulch. This, as well as some gypsum, should help feed the soil which is like concrete now that the weather has warmed up.
We mixed bags of garden soil with decomposed straw from the chicken’s yard, then added more straw on top for mulch. This, as well as some gypsum, should help feed the soil which is like concrete now that the weather has warmed up.

Also known as our dustbowl, mudbath and eyesore out the back door. (Photos from back in October)

Into (drumroll please!!)

Our trusty child labourers, ready to spread the gypsum over the clay soil.
Our trusty child labourers, ready to spread the gypsum over the clay soil.
Halfway through shovelling 5 tons of topsoil.
Halfway through shovelling 5 tons of topsoil.
The beautifully smooth finished product!
The beautifully smooth finished product!

All of this was completed last Friday night, the day before DH started his holiday time. Saturday morning, at 9am on the dot,

The proud owner of a brand new lawn! Sir Walter Buffalo was our choice of lawn, having grown it before quite happily.
The proud owner of a brand new lawn! Sir Walter Buffalo was our choice of lawn, having grown it before quite happily.
First roll going down.
First roll going down.
All finished! The brown lines are extra top soil brushed into the cracks. They disappeared with a good watering in.
All finished! The brown lines are extra top soil brushed into the cracks. They disappeared with a good watering in.
We actually had enough lawn left over from the cuts etc, to lay out the nature strip! This meant a very VERY quick session digging and levelling it, adding topsoil and laying the lawn before it dried out. Hard work in the heat!
We actually had enough lawn left over from the cuts etc, to lay out the nature strip! This meant a very VERY quick session digging and levelling it, adding topsoil and laying the lawn before it dried out. Hard work in the heat!

Of course, what these photos don’t really show is a few things – the team effort from the whole family, kids included to work through some pretty hot weather. The day we put the lawn down it got to 33degrees C, the next day, an absolute scorcher at 40.5!! Poor lawn. DH did a great job watering it to keep it alive. Since then the temperatures have been a lot more moderate in the high 20’s. Perfect lawn growing weather!

Of course, we had ample topsoil left over, so the whole garden got a good layer.
Of course, we had ample topsoil left over, so the whole garden got a good layer.

Although we measured carefully, in the cubic metres to tonnes conversion we ended up with a LOT more topsoil than we  needed for the lawn. At over $60 a ton, we weren’t going to waste any of it!

Top soil filling up the small garden bed that borders the lawn.
Top soil filling up the small garden bed that borders the lawn.
Top soil spread and levelled down the side fence.
Top soil spread and levelled down the side fence.

Of course, this beautiful fine soil will blow away in the wind, and we can’t keep watering the dirt. I know what we need!!

Trusty child labour to the rescue!! Ok boys, only 6 ton to go!!
Trusty child labour to the rescue!! Ok boys, only 6 ton to go!!
Yep, that's what 6 1/2 tonnes of bark mulch looks like.
Yep, that’s what 6 1/2 tonnes of bark mulch looks like.

So, 1 week to the day after the lawn was delivered and laid, and here is the finished product….

All mulched along the fence, ready for some plants!
All mulched along the fence, ready for some plants!
Mulched along the lawn and near the shed. Next step will be a clothesline!!
Mulched along the lawn and near the shed. Next step will be a clothesline!!
Please insert clothesline HERE!
Please insert clothesline HERE!
Garden bed around the deck, check.
Garden bed around the deck, check.
As an added bonus, again we had way too much ordered, so we were able to fill in the rather tired looking bed by the driveway as well.
As an added bonus, again we had way too much ordered, so we were able to fill in the rather tired looking Iris bed by the driveway as well.

There was still more mulch leftover, as you can see on the driveway here – which got spread over the plain dirt on the front yard.

Are you tired after all that? I sure am. Pass the beer please, it’s time for a nap!!

But seriously, we are over the moon to have the backyard about 90% finished!! No more mud, dust or weeds, and it’s all ready for some fun! Of course, there’s still the front yard to finish off, but that’s another holiday I think.

Big shout out to my wonderful men – big AND small. Without their muscle, we wouldn’t have gotten very far. Enjoy the rest of your holiday. You’ve earnt it!Happy Crafting - Cassie.

5 Responses

  1. grannysmiff

    I hope this is not too personal but I’m wondering why you don’t celebrate Christmas.

    • Cassandra

      No, it’s not too personal. I just don’t make a big deal out of it because I don’t want to make everyone else feel uncomfortable 🙂 We don’t celebrate Christmas for religious reasons. Our belief is that Jesus wasn’t born in December, as has been pointed out by many people (it snows in Israel in December). The addition of the tree and Santa was much later in history, and there is no record of the early Christian disciples ever celebrating Jesus’, or any other birthday in fact. Jesus himself commanded them to memorialise his death, as this meant so much more to our future and the blessings promised through him.

      If you have any more questions, just drop me an email to cassiemadge AT gmail DOT com.

      Thanks as always for visiting!

  2. These are the best kinds of family projects, and everyone feels fantastic afterwards. Hope you get to enjoy some well deserved down time together now!

    • Cassandra

      Oh yes, the down time was worth the sweat! I’m just so glad that the boys were able to take over my job of chief shoveller this time. They are big and strong now!

  3. […] apart from some major landscaping, what else has been happening in the […]

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