Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Stone Patio Reveal

As promised I have part two of our Zen Garden patio project to share with you today. I am really sorry it took me so long, time has just flown right by and the next thing I know another week is gone.  There are projects of all kinds going on around here and I just don’t seem to be able to keep up with all the projects and blog about them too.  Anyway…. In part one I shared how we took a barren dog run and created a peaceful Zen Garden, in part two I am sharing how we turned our garden into our new Zen dining patio.  Here’s what we did.

First thing we did was to pull back all the red bark/mulch to each side of the area where we wanted to lay out our patio. We did a dry fit to check measurements and decide where the patio frame would go.  Rot resistant timbers were cut to size and hammered in place using metal spikes through the lumber, nice and secure. 

The ground was leveled and the base sand was added, we used special sand which was very clean to avoid future weeds and moss growing under the stones.  Every stone was carefully placed using a level and extra sand to ensure proper runoff and no low spots.

Once all the stones were in place some Polymeric Jointing Sand was swept into every crack and crevice then wet down and left to dry, the process had to be repeated several more times so the stones would remain locked together and not slide around when stepped on.  My husband did a fantastic job on our new stone patio; I am a very proud wife.

Our finish work required us to haul out a ton of red mulch and distribute it all around our backyard and front yard giving the whole area a little color lift after a messy winter. We had to do a lot of raking to get rid of all the dead leaves and plants before adding the mulch to our bedding plants, which created a whole other project, but I can say the entire yard and both side yards look fresh, pretty and ready to enjoy.  I believe our yard work projects are complete for this year, unless….. we decide to sand and re-stain our wooden pergola which sits on our cement patio…maybe not, I think my husband would go on strike if I suggested it right now with all the other projects we have going on.  He is getting ready to build a large family size outdoor dining table and benches to put on the new stone patio.  I will be away while he is working on it so I won’t have before photos to show you but I will try to sneak in the finished project when I get back. 

Thanks for letting me share our patio building adventures with you; I hope you enjoyed this peek into some of our outdoor spaces. Time to get back to more of my projects.
See you soon.


Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Stone Patio Addition Part - 1

I finally have something new to share with you, I have been gone a while due to unforeseen circumstances but I am back again to share a new project with you.  My husband and I have been working on our curb appeal in the front yard and outdoor living spaces in the backyard, today’s project is one we did in the backyard.  We have kind of a funny yard with a large terraced hill as part of our backyard and two nice size yards on each side of it.  We also have some grass in front of the hill and a long narrow cement patio with a wooden pergola over that patio.  One side yard is cemented in where the previous owner had a spa (no longer there before we moved in) and the other side yard was a good size but used as a dog run for two large dogs who loved to chew up everything in site, including all the plants and most of the trees, it was pretty much a barren waste land out there and very hot.  This side yard is viewed everyday through the dining room/living room window and the kitchen window, talk about an ugly view, yuck! 

(Rocks and stones from all over this part of the yard, there were a lot, makes a cool rock garden!)

The very first spring after we moved in we began to get that space in shape, we dug up tons of old bones, dead tree stumps, weeds and a boat load of landscaping rocks and stepping stones.  The neighbors told me that part of the yard was once really beautiful with professional landscaping consisting of privacy trees, shrubs and flowers, what a shame.  Because it was early spring the ground was super soft so we got a Rota tiller and dug it all up to even out the hug holes the dogs left in the ground.  Once it was level we moved around all the rock and stepping stones, added a bunch of extra potted plants from around the rest of the yard and spread in some red mulch/bark to cover up all the dirt.  We really wanted a stone patio but it just was not in the budget at the time and we were not really sure what we wanted to do with that part of our outdoor space.  We had been thinking of making it a play yard for the grandchildren but we were not sure what to do with it, we just knew we did not want the ugly view anymore.  When we finished the new yard space I sent my oldest sister a photo of it and she dubbed it the “Zen Garden”, it was so pretty and tranquil she was right on track. We had a huge iron and canvas pergola we could not find a large enough home for on the other side of the yard so we put it up in our new “Zen Garden”, it just barely fit but really did the trick of cutting down the blazing sun and heat on that side of the house without cutting out any of the light.  Woohoo!!! We finally had something nice to look at even if it was only temporary! 

Thanks for letting me share part 1 of our patio story, part two is up next with the addition of the new stone patio, I can’t wait to show you, keep reading to see it in a day or two, maybe even tomorrow if I can keep on writing without much interruption.
See you soon.

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