Sunday, November 27, 2011

Our new backyard patio

Hope everyone enjoyed their Thanksgiving with family and friends to give thanks for life's simple pleasures especially for the ones we take for granted everyday.  A few of my many thanks: I am grateful & thankful for my family, my little house & garden, my right-hand men Joe (my bf) & Cyrus (my dog), our clients for the work they bring us, for good health & for all of you following my blog, Gardening in South Florida!

Now on to our latest project in our garden.  We started what was supposed to be a weekend project which turned into a two month long project.  A good friend of ours offered us a huge stack of pavers he wasn't using & suggested what a great idea to put a little patio in one section of our backyard.  "YES, I love it! Let's do it!" I exclaimed, especially cause he offered to help.
Here's what the area looked like before the grass killing...yeah no more grass!!!
"I'm going to plant sunshine mimosa or ornamental peanut or creeping thyme or mint, oh my! 

Something fun & low maintenance, anything but grass!"  
Well, that's what I thought at the time, lol...tbc...
So I sprayed grass killer in the newly designated area & we were to wait a week for it to be nice & crispy, "easier to take out that way" he says.  Well....a week turned into three weeks as we got pummeled with a tropical storm for a full week, then we had to work one weekend (at our real job) & the weather was awful another weekend.  Finally the day to work on the patio had arrived.  So we raked & shoveled and moved some serious dirt to make way for three & a half yards of leveling sand.
Grass is gone & a dirt pit now exists
aka the zippy hole
The winds were whipping this week so there
was dust everywhere for a couple weeks, ugh
Before we could even think about the next step of getting the sand, as all projects go, we ran into a few unexpected issues...namely the sprinkler system.  Since the design of the patio had changed a few times so too the sprinkler system layout had to change.  Turns out we had to reroute the sprinkler system around the patio.   I rarely use our sprinklers but who wants a busted water pipe under a paver patio, lol, "not I said the cat!"
You can see the new sprinkler trench we are
digging around the "zippy hole", boy howdy,
we were knee high in dirt for days, ugh!
The backyard was a complete wreck while we
were working on the patio.  Though I couldn't help
myself but to go around cleaning up every so often, lol.
So with three trips to the store for right sprinkler parts, we finally finished that step of the process & had the system up & running.  Though Mother Nature never fails, as we were running the sprinklers to make sure they were working properly, it starts to rain.  The only reason why I mention this is because I kid you not it happens every time!  Get me out of the dirt and into the sand! Bushel Stop here we come!
With our first yard of sand down, the leveling begins.
Now how many 57yr old men do you know that can
actually bend down & touch the ground!?! I do! :)
Joe working on the second truck load of
sand.  Boy I tell you, these guys worked all
day nonstop!
The leveling & stamping part is almost done!
At this point I am so excited I can't help myself
but to start taking pictures.
So with the day coming to and end, the cerveza's are
in hand & the paver's have hit the sand.  The look on Jim's face is priceless, lol, he is glad the day is over!
With two more days of the fit & finish of the patio, all the cutting of the perimeter pavers and paver laying is coming to a close.  Talk about "back breaking" labor, when you don't do this kind of physical labor everyday, then jump into a project like this, boy your body tells you how it is!
These are three pictures to see the entire area...wish I knew how to do panorama pics in photoshop :) 
This is looking back the towards the house
What an absolute mess the backyard has become, whaaa!
Our work station for the wet saw & all the tools
Our completed "weekend" project, lol
And so with our "two month-weekend" project at it's final stage of completion we tip our hats to the overzealous backyard enthusiasts like myself who have good intentions of finishing a project in a weekend but rarely ever do. ;)  Now all we have to do is put some sod down...WHAT!?!...did I just say sod?!? OMG I sure did....ugh!  There is one area next to the house in the picture below you will see new sod there.  All of my best pleading, manipulating & educating of how natives like sunshine mimosa, peanut, etc are way better than grass had failed me.  Joe understood my passion but thought it prudent to put grass there so our dog wouldn't track in dirt.  My plan is to sneak some native plants in there to grow in meantime...."oh my goodness, how did that get there!?!" LOL  "Pretty sneaky sis!"
Finally, our completed patio...ok not actually truly
finished as we still have some little things to do 
but we can now enjoy our hard work just in
time for this absolutely gorgeous cool fall
weather.  We transplanted our little Meyer
Lemon tree (in left of pic)
and our Nam Doc Mai Mango (right of pic) from the big blue glazed pots we had in the front yard.
Yes, the grass is a little spotty but it will grow in or
even better yet, replace with ornamental peanut! With their beautiful green soft oval leaves & bright butttercup yellow flowers, who wouldn't love it!
Close up of the seating area where I will be adding
the big blue glazed planter pots with gorgeous
colorful plants in them...tbc... :)
A view of the walkway
So there we have it, our new backyard patio!  I will most definitely be posting more pictures along the way since we are renovating the front & backyard.  I transplanted a handful of plants already but that's kind of a boring story so I will wait till the grand finale, lol.  Until the next time, I bid you all adieu!  To continue the quote theme in this blog, hee hee, I modified the fantastic Paula Dean's mantra to...."until next time, from our garden to yours, I wish you happy planting!"  xoxo

1 comment:

  1. That’s two months of hard work and it totally paid off! It’s simple, but I read your recent blogs and saw those beautiful plants and flowers you have, no doubt that your patio is the highlight of your home. Anyway, I hope you still enjoy staying and adding more plants or decorations in your patio. Having a proper cleaning or maintenance is always the key to maintain its beauty.

    Kylee Groves