Monday, May 7, 2012

Flower Bed Expansion Project Progress

After having a posting on Craig's List for nearly 2 weeks offering "free St. Augustine sod - you dig it up, it's yours" without good results* I set out with my shovel on Sunday to tackle it myself.

Saturday I had a brain spark that I should make a sign reading, "FREE SOD" to put in my parkway as I dug it up, but frankly I was too lazy to actually do it.  I got up Sunday, had my coffee talk on the porch with friends, and started digging.  I lined up the squares of the (beautiful, healthy) sod on the sidewalk, with really no plan of what I would do with it but somehow assured that it would all work out.

When I had dug up two squares and laid them out on the sidewalk, the voice in my head became too loud to ignore. With a heavy sigh I put down the shovel, peeled off my gloves, took off my hat, shucked off my work boots and padded into my house in stocking feet to make a sign.

Came back out, reassembled my work attire and unceremoniously stuck the sign into the ground in my parkeway. Picked up the shovel and resumed the fun.

Literally less than 15 minutes later my neighbor from up on the corner was strolling my way, asking what in the heck I was doing.  I explained that I am steadily chipping away at my front lawn, abolishing it bit by bit.  She looked at the yard, looked at the sign, and said, "I want it."  Sweet!  I offered my wheelbarrow for transport and kept digging.  She stopped me, and pointed.  "Pull up that sign.  I want ALL of it."  Seriously?  It turns out between our rain, her many dogs, and hosting a neighborhood Easter event, her sod was shot, and she didn't have the cash to replace it.  I'm so glad I made the sign!  Win/win, I say.

Also, I will cite my 2012 Manifesto, statement #6:  Listen to the voice in your head; it may not be your own.

Digging up sod in tidy squares is not necessarily difficult, or hard work, but it is sort of slow.  I worked for a couple of hours - not exactly sure how long - and got enough squares cut out to fill two wheelbarrows heaping full.   But really, it wasn't as much coverage (uncoverage?) as I would have anticipated.  Behold, the new corner, with the new placement of border stones:

And I also dug up along the inside of the "squiggle" portion:

I knew pulling the grass out from the behind the border, allowing the contrast of the soil vs grass would give a big change visually, and I was looking forward to seeing it - i.e. validating all the hard work of rearranging the border stones 2 weeks ago! 

For this left side of the yard, here is the portion that remains to be dug up:

I MIGHT be a third of the way done with just the left side.  What you can't see in the photo is that the grass extends a few feet to the left, underneath the shrubbery...  Who needs a gym membership? 

The good news is, (or is it good news?  Perhaps not...) I am not under any deadline to finish it, other than the peer pressure of an unfinished project in my front yard.  Oh, and this Saturday is the Butterfly House semi-annual butterfly plant sale... hmmmmm.   : )

* Five different individuals wanted it, asked for and received photos.  Some even got as far as asking for my address.  One actually showed up, but didn't bring a shovel, promised to come back with help... None of them ever followed through...

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