Sunday 24 April 2011

Hard Labour in the Garden

I finally got round to tidying up the front garden.  At least the parts that were supposed to be an alpine/rockery area.  The photo above shows one of the finished sections.  Over the past ten years I have done a bit of digging and replanting and for a couple of years the area has looked pretty good.  However it has never lasted.  In part because I never bothered to lay down a plastic membrane to keep the weeds out, and in large part because I was just too lazy to keep the garden in trim.  The rockery areas, we have two, one on either side of the path, were now overgrown with weeds and there was no alternative to digging the whole lot up and starting again.  This time I called for reinforcements in the form of Billy, a local handyman who we paid to help clear one  of the rockery areas.  He also put up the mini fencing and laid down the membrane.  Despite this much welcomed help, I still had loads of work to do myself.  I did some of the digging up and pulling out the deep roots on that side.  And backbreaking work it was too.  Here is what this area looked like cleared of weeds and the mini fencing in.
The other side I did all on my own.   This was even more strenuous.  First there was the digging, pulling up roots, and generally clearing the site of all visible weeds.  The debris, an amazing amount from such a small area, had then to be carted off to the recycling centre.  The membrane had then to be cut and laid.  Again, harder than I imagined.  Then of course the plants had to be planted.  An easy and pleasant task - not!  First you have to cut open the membrane, then dig out a hole for the plant, put in the plant, fill in the hole with soil and replace the membrane cover.  This involved constant bending and stretching.  At several stages I felt I would not manage to continue.  My back, knees and legs all hurt painfully.  I am just too old and much too unfit for this kind of exertion.  I will stick to stitching in future.  This of course was not all.  The final  covering of stones had to be bought and carried up to the garden.  We had three journeys for this and in all 14 bags of moonstone were used.  The actual laying down of the stones was not too hard and probably the most satisfying part of the exercise.  Still it was all worthwhile and the area now looks like this.
Kathleen added some ceramic balls and other sculptured bits and pieces.  At the moment of course there is not much in the way of colour as many of the plants have yet to bloom.  And everything is very small as yet.  Next year it should look a bit fuller and we can always add a few more plants each year.

1 comment:

  1. I completely agree with you on how strenuous this is! And I'm a fitness instructor. You are amazing. How much did you pay Billy? Having been through the whole ordeal, and looking back on it, how much would you have paid someone to do all that you did for you? I ask because I did the same thing for a neighbor and we are trying to figure out price. I probably spent 30 plus hours.