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Tuesday, 26 May 2015

Taking this grow-your-own thing seriously!

Whilst still finishing the fence, I brought 10 sleepers to make a large planter for me to grow all my veggies. This weekend Scott and Andy made it for me, dug a hole ready for the water tank foundations and made a base for the greenhouse.

They are cementing the greenhouse base and water tank foundations next weekend when I am on nights - so I hope they're quiet about it! It doesn't look that big there but it's  pretty decent!

My little 6x4 greenhouse is already fit to burst with me wanting more and more to go in it. So much so that there has been a slight change of plan....

 I have blown a load of money one one twice the size!! It's going to take a few weeks to get here but it will be so worth it! It's a Rhino Premium 6x8. It will sit comfortably on the base and still leave me a decent path down the side to get to my planter. Andy has the 8x12 in green but I decided to save myself the extra £300 and just have it plain aluminium. Scott thinks that it would look better in our garden anyway - though he is probably just saying that because he didn't want me to spend the money as it was - let alone even more just for a colour... 

I was originally going to have the model with double doors in the long side but decided that I would probably have more space if I had a single door on the short end. It will then have staging that will run the length on one side and space for grow bags on the other! I am SOOOO excited!!! I want it here now. It should also collect a decent amount of rain water so will also have a slimline water butt next to it and the over flow pipe straight into the bed. Hopefully I'll never need to run the tap to water the garden again!...

My broad beans came up well second time round so they have been planted in grow bags along with a tomato and cucumber plant. Another good thing with my new greenhouse is that it has hanging basket rails which I plan to tie string on so that the beans will be able to climb up easily. Next year i might even grow my tomatoes in hanging baskets to utilise the space even more!

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Slug Wars

I am having just as much luck with my garden as I have in previous years.... The bloody slugs are eating everything! I have had to replace about 5 of the tomatoes I planted in the grow bags GRRRR!!!!!! This gardening lark takes a lot of time just for it all to get eaten.. and not by me!!!

I thought I would try some 'pet friendly' slug repellent pellet things. They made the grow bed look stupid and did sod all to stop them.

Charlie couldn't work it out either!

After a ranty post on facebook asking for suggestions on what to do, my next plan of attack is a beer trap.

Actually that's a lie, it's not beer in there at all. It's a yeast mixture designed to entice them then kill them! MUHAHAHAHA!!!!! It better work, otherwise I am going to go mad! I have done two; one in the bed itself and the other in the greenhouse. I have also been out a few times with a pair of scissors and chopped the gits up too; I found that pretty satisfying, but I keep forgetting to do it regularly.

We have also finished off the two left over odd panels for the fence and the trellis!!! It's looking great - really really pleased with it!

It's all been painted to match the street too... well I say the street, I actually mean one house over the road. But you know, the trend might catch on so it all matches eventually!

I have also started planning the plants to climb the trellis. I brought myself a big planter and have put a passion flower in it! I used to have the most gorgeous passion flower when we lived in the flat (pre-blogging times that). It was a white and blue one and looked lovely in our little court yard.

This one is a pure white one which I thought would look nicer in this garden. It will eventually sit next to the gate and cover the trellis behind where the greenhouse will be. I can't wait to see it flower!

Will need to decide what else will cover the trellis now. I cant decide!

Phase two to commence soon!

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Goodbye Wall, Hello Fence!

I spent the May bank holiday weekend being a DIY builder, with the help of my husband and an actual builder! We have been talking about replacing the falling down wall since we moved in and for that reason I have done very little with the garden so far.  I'm glad for that as you should see the state of the grass now!! haha!

The wall came down easy as pie... apparently. Scott did it Friday whilst I was at work. We had the skip and building supplies delivered which he stayed home for. I expected him to start on the wall but I didn't expect to see the whole thing down! I wish I had taken a picture of it up where we park our cars, in places you could see right through the brick joins where it has been so battered. Though I hear that that was caused by the last people who lived here reversing their car into it!

In the picture above you can see the closest corner where the road outside is significantly taller than the bottom of our garden. This was always going to be the hardest part of the job as the post to go in there was 9ft (Andy recommended a 10ft but they were out of stock for 3 weeks). Just in front of where the old wall post is there was a massive concrete block which the old oil container used to sit on (before we moved in). Getting rid of that cost us most of the first morning as it was soo bloody thick. The boys worked on that whilst I cleared the top by the garage. It doesn't take long to fill a skip.

After that it didn't look good for getting much more done that day, the corner panel took two gravel boards to get it to the street level and digging the holes for the posts was really hard work. For a long while we talked about just replacing the wall with another wall. Which would have been easier as we wouldn't have had to break through the walls foundations. What was worse was that as soon as we were through the foundations we hit clay!! That was just as much work to get out.

In the end we managed 3 panels/4 posts on Saturday, which was a good job as we didn't get much done at all on Sunday because of the weather. As you can see, my raspberries just about survived there... Sunday consisted of one more panel/post going up and us spending more money on more concrete and fence paint.

Oh, we did have fun removing the tree stump at the bottom of the garden. Lets just say Andy saved me a bit of time digging it out by hand....

Monday was great, we had nice weather, renewed motivation (because we had to finish) and slightly less aching bones - in mine and Scott's case that is!

As we got to the top of the garden became easier but at a sacrifice.........

That white part on the hard standing shows were the wall used to be!! The boys really didn't fancy breaking through the 8-10 inches of concrete so I reluctantly agreed that they could bring the fence this side of it. It did make loads of difference as there were no foundations to break through which made hole digging loads easier! You can see by Scott's disappearing head how deep those holes were! The one in the front of the picture was my hole! Very proud of that, I got it as deep as my arms would let me then Scott and Andy finished it off!

The two corner panels are smaller so needed cutting down, one of which we have done, the other to be finished. Hopefully today but the weather it pretty horrible out there at the moment... We also need to build up the end by the house and Andy's garage. We have left over gravel boards and should have enough fence panel to do it. Then it'll just be sorting a gate, making/getting the trellis to top it and painting it all! Oh, and putting the part ruined grass back together and getting the greenhouse in properly!

As you can see, we also acquired a 1000L water tank too, but that's another project and another blog post in waiting!