Eeer...does anyone have a magic wand? I really do have this concrete problem. If anyone has one, can I please borrow it? I'll give it back, I promise.
In any words, yes, it is that time. Backyard magic time. I've got a dreams, I have a vision, and hopefully by the end of this spring, it will come into fruition. I may have set my expectations too high, the backyard looks like absolute crap right now, and it's more than just a cosmetic problem...but why set the bar low when you can scramble and sweat (and sometimes bleed) to have things done and beautiful on time? This WILL get done!!!
This whole concrete thing had been more of a constant project (just because there was so much of it!!!), but this past weekend, with the help of our lovely friend, Janna, we really made some headway, and in fact, I would say we're almost done with the concrete project. I have some before and after photos here (though I have to warn you, it's one of those things where the after photos look worse than the before ones...it's like a--when you're organizing your house, and sometimes it has to get MORE messy before it gets clean--kind of thing).
All of the concrete is now out of the ground, and in a pile, which is a huge success. And thinking we had the hard part done last weekend, we succumbed to the idea that we were done with the heavy lifting thing, and we might as well just call a hauler to take our concrete woes away. Which would have worked, if we had an extra 1400.00 in our "getting rid of concrete" fund. I didn't realize we'd need a whole other savings account for this project. So alas, we'll have to continue sweating, lifting, throwing, crying as we complete this project. We have a dumpster that will arrive on Monday morning at 7 am, and it will be taken away at 6 pm that night, containing all of our concrete, our disgusting rat-infested wood, and all of our backyard nightmares.
Tuesday morning the backyard will start its process of being reborn into a delightful garden, complete with fabled rat-repelling plants that will hopefully keep these horrible buggers at bay. Already, the "patio" is almost done. I just need to go back through and level them all out one by one and then fill it in, but I think the hard part is done. Getting all of those pieces to fit perfectly one by one was quite the project. Hopefully by the end of the summer, I will have coaxed some moss to grow in between the cracks and it will have a lovely effect (I found a recipe for "moss paint" that is basically blending up some moss and buttermilk that I'm anxious to try!).
We've been having a dilemma with the fence at the very end of our lot. On the one hand, it is handy at keeping people out who might have some bad intentions, but on the other hand, it keeps our yard out of view, and we would really love to inspire our neighbors, or other people who walk by, to start gardening in their back yard, or at least start a few plants. The paved concrete yard is so common in Baltimore, and it's one of the largest reasons that the bay is getting so polluted. Every time it rains, it gets washed off the concrete and into the storm drains, and nothing is soaked up in actual soil, and the result is a polluted bay, an incredibly hot neighborhood (no regulation by plants and moisture). It's really unbelievable. I could go on and on about this...but this is already a very long post, so I'll leave it at that.
That, and my seedlings that I've started. They're at the bottom of the page. I've got to thank my mom for ingraining this knowledge base in me from a very young age. As most of you know, she's been gardening in her suburban lot since she moved in there, and I didn't know how much I picked up until I started planning the lot (especially since I refused to go into the garden for fear of spiders when I was little...). Thank you, Mommy!!
|The almost-completed patio.|
|The sandbag is our back step. We're classy here in Remington.|
|Part of the path that will lead to the fence door.|
|I'll be sure to post a photo after the concrete has vanished!!!|