I was able to tackle two areas in the East yard today. The first was planned; I decided to leave the remains of the wood chip pile where it was, and spread it out along Northwest corner of the spruce grove.
Some of the pile got moved to the cross, as the pile at the other end didn’t have enough chips to extend that far. This will make mowing around this corner easier. Eventually, I will be clearing further into this area, but that will have its own natural mulch of leaves and spruce needles.
This side is where they chipped the branches from the 2 big maples directly onto the ground. There is more cleanup needed here, plus that dead tree will need to come down at some point, so I wasn’t too particular about how much this area was spread out.
I have some thoughts about that dead spruce tree. I could have it cut flush with the ground. I could have the stump leveled at about a foot and a half high and use it as a seat, or put boards across it to turn it into a bench. I could have it cut a bit higher and put a table top on it, then add benches or seats around it. Or I could have it cut to a couple of feet, hollow it out and turn it into a planter.
Feel free to let me know what you think about these ideas in the comments. 🙂
Once that was done, I finally got around to removing the foam insulation we put around the house in the fall. That got me eyeballing this odd little flower bed my mother made where she had transplanted a jasmine.
This is what it looked like after removing the foam insulation; I had tossed the little plastic fence things in there, just to get them out of the way.
It’s falling apart and, when I try to water the jasmine by the steps, the water just runs downhill, past that piece of pressure treated wood and the miscellaneous pieces of brick. I had a couple of other pieces of pressure treated wood, as well as other bricks. I figured I could use both to build up a little retaining wall, bricks as a foundation for the wood, then more bricks on the wood to create a higher wall.
The first thing to do, of course, is take out the bricks that were already there.
From where I was pulling things out, I get the impression that a bed was built up around the jasmine by the stairs when it was transplanted, and then it was extended when the second plant (I am not sure if it’s another jasmine; I don’t think so) was added.
I wanted a rectangular bed, since I was using the pieces of wood for walls, so I started digging it out to create level trenches to put them in.
I kept finding more bricks!
Using one of the pieces of wood as a guide, I began putting bricks into the trench as a foundation, leveling them off by eye. This is not intended to be permanent, so I’m not too worried about getting anything exact, but it will be there a few years, I’m sure, so I still want to get it solid.
After reaching the steps, I discovered a bit of a problem. Even using a block of concrete that was already there, the length of the bed was greater than the combined length of the wood I was using. I did have another piece that turned out to be just wide enough to fit, but…
I mean, I could cut it to size with a chainsaw (now that I have one that works), but it’s quite rotten and…. nah. Not happy with it.
So I moved the end in a few inches, instead.
Once the brick foundation and wood pieces were in place, I used the soil I’d taken out to fill in the gaps.
Once that was done and stamped down, I realized I didn’t need to make it any higher.
I will likely need to bring in more soil for the outside of the bed, to tamp down and make sure the pieces of wood don’t just fall off their brick foundation. That can be done little by little, as needed, over the summer. I will also be mulching it with straw, when I start working on the bale.
So I now have to figure out what to do with the bricks. 🙂