After I arrived home from my exam on Monday I was greeted by a bobcat sitting in my back garden – I feel I need to clarify that it, sadly, was not a Transformer. Initially I thought “ah sweet, free bobcat”, until I came to the more sensible conclusion that the landscaper had started work and simply left it there for future use. Boo.

Remember when I told you about the guy who lived here before us who (according to sources) used to mow the lawn in his speedos? Well, the garden was obviously his passion but with little care taken to preserve the house and/or future occupants. For example, trees with massive roots that would eventually rip up the drive-way were planted as a privacy screen. Poisonous plants, drainage in strange places, cutting the fence to a weird and poorly done angle, you’know, all the usual stuff you can expect to discover from someone who tells you to get on the linen cupboard shelf to prove it can really hold a person upon handover of the property.

Now, our block is on top of a small hill so the east side of the garden slopes slightly. What old mate has done is try to level it out by simply pushing the soil up against the fence. I should perhaps specify that the fence is NOT a retaining wall. We didn’t realise this until we removed all of the trees and bushes so this is what we asked our landscaper to work on first – leaving the front garden a desolate wasteland (okay, I’m being a tad dramatic) until after the back is sorted.

I know most of you are probably skim reading all of these posts so here are the pictures you’ve anxiously been waiting for:


during the week

what it looks like this morning

In true I-hate-2014-because-you’ve-been-a-complete-arse style, the start of the project did not go easy. The landscaper quickly discovered that the builder must have used the side of the house as some kind of concrete landfill and so most of the post holes had to be dug by hand and with the use of a jackhammer. I, of course, kept offering ludicrous amounts of cups of tea to everyone because I’m English and it’s what we do. Needless to say they got through the hard graft and I’m hoping the retaining timber (up against the fence) will be all in place by the end of the day.

I will post another update once the garden bed I have merrily described to the landscaper is complete. We then have to stain the wood, lay some turf and do some planting so I’ll probably do another update after that in a few weeks.

Anyway, we’re really happy with the result so far. We went with a father-son team who had worked on my girlfriends yard and I found them really easy to chat to and have around Little Man. We also have the added benefit of knowing our fence isn’t going to cave in any time soon and I get to buy some more succulents and other drought tolerant plants – yay! Who knows, maybe a garden gnome might fall into my trolley too…

Until next time,


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