Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Back Steps Resolution

You may recall that when the steps were installed we hit a snafu... the bottom step was below grade.  A design whoopsie... followed by footings that matched... and, well, my steps seemed to lead to either a wine cellar or a nuclear fall out shelter.  (Certainly someone thinks to put wine in nuclear fall out shelters, right?  I mean...)

Anyway, it's been the topic of speculation to the point of ad nausem.  Perhaps even to the point of making me cranky.  I didn't know what I was going to do to fix it, and if I did know, wouldn't I be doing it?  I'm the type that in scenarios such as this I need to let the change settle and then re-evaluate.  I need some time and space, please.

Ultimately I did choose the path of least resistance, which was to bury the bottom step.  I tried it tentatively at first, not really loving the idea of burying one of the beautiful steel steps, but smart enough to realize that if I didn't go that route, the other options were much much more labor intensive and spendy.  No harm in trying...  Blissfully it turned out that I liked it.  Here is the initial re-work:  (Be nice.)

Now, before you say anything (I suspect I'm not fast enough to stop your initial mental impressions) a few disclaimers: 

One -- obviously the weed stop fabric along the path needs some detail work done.  I'll tuck it under and re-staple it, and it will be hidden with mondo grass or thyme or something. 

Two, the two rows of 3 cement pavers are not permanent.  At least I don't think they are.   I needed something to do a bit of terracing to prevent a mudslide and I had those on hand.  I suspect they will be replaced with flagstone, or timbers, or.. I don't know.  Something more aesthetically pleasing than those rectangular pavers.  But for the time being, they work.  I must admit to prancing when I walk to my car in the morning and my shoes don't get muddy.  And I do love love love the steps and canopy.

That larger green plant to the right of the steps was between my car port and my neighbor's fence -- truly neglected and sort of pretty.  Also the only living thing on that little stretch of dirt.  So I decided to give it some love and move it out to where I can see it and heck maybe even water it occasionally.  So far it seems happy.  It's sort of an unusual plant; I should have snapped a close up photo of it to show you.  I don't know if it blooms or anything; time will tell.

I may plant a couple Japanese Yew behind those chairs against the railing to give a soft screen... and the pansies were hand-me-downs from my neighbor; she was replacing them.  They may not thrive, but at the moment they are better there than mud, and again... free.  I'm all over free.

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