Garden Paving – Phase3 completion

I find that if you break up projects in ‘phases’ then it hides the fact that it has taken so long to do something that isn’t actually that big and should only had taken a couple of weeks, and not a couple of years. Phase 1 started last year but I should not forget that I was thinking about it and wanting to do it for at least a couple of years before then. The whole side of the house was just uneven bare earth that was a big to get my bike over each day to go to work. It seem like it has been many years that I have needed to get my bike in and out to go to work, first Covid and then post Covid means such activities have not taken places for ages.

The paving down the side of the house was completed last year, I remember in December putting the last bit of paving in place in the wet and freezing cold. I thought it would be a miracle if it stuck and I was right, this year I had to relay it. Still, ‘phase 1’ revolutionised the way we got bikes in and out of the shed (doesn’t happen often) as well as buggies (happens every day). It didn’t quite reach across the width of the gate, but that would have to wait for ‘phase 2’ in the new year.

Phase 2 was a little bit involved which may be why I put it off for so long. It was either too wet, too cold, or too hot. This is where the paving would venture out onto the grass but at a higher level to keep everything flat. When the house was built and the garden was set out, having things no the same level didn’t seem to come into it even if it was essential to make the journey from the gate to the decking possible. This small one meter gap plagued us for years and now it would all be level, once I had done some brick laying on the new sub-base that was once the grass. This extra one metre of level paving made a huge difference and marked ‘phase 2’ as complete.

Phase 3 would mean no more angle grinding around strange shapes and just a run down in a straight line running the width of the garden. This bit of paving would have no real use and ‘phase 3’ was never on the original plan but once I had done the other bits it would had been strange just having a bit jutting out into the grass and then a big step down. The strip of grass between the raised beds and the decking it pretty much useless during the winter, a constant muddy area that you have to venture over to get to the raised beds. If it were paved then not only could you venture out in the winter but you would also use it as a space for a temporary holding pattern for buggies during the day. Minimal work needed to pay these which is why this phase took just two or three weeks, not months or years.

All phases now completed and off to the garden centre to get some plants to fill in the trough planter I made the other year and has since stood there empty until it slowly started to fill with offcuts and left over bits of soil plus any small toys that had fallen off the decking and landed in there. That has now all been swapped out from some shrubs, some bamboo and the left over spaces there will be different colour dogwood. That should arrive at some point this week.

I’ve edged some of the sides with loose soil and grass seed that is years old and hardly germinated when we first bought it and so I not expecting much this time. When it’s failed we will buy some more seed and redo it in the Autumn.

I dug up a lot of turf and top soil for Phase 3 and I used that to fill in the hole by the top raised bed which had been there ever since I made the raised beds and we have been falling into it, twisting our ankles ever since. The cats keep pooing in it too. No photos but it gives us an extra 30cm of level(ish) grass which will surely change our life’s and if that does not then noting twisting our ankles any more will be enough. I stamped down the soil and turf quite a bit, I may reseed in the Autumn with the new seed to fill in any gaps that don’t make it.

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