The end of May saw our landscapers return after a slight hiatus whilst they created a show home garden at Oran Park. The irrigation people also turned up and installed a Hunter X-Core computerised system so it was all systems go.
Meanwhile we bought a Dulux paint sprayer ready to use on the timber side fences when they are done. First up we practiced on the existing back fence where raw timber was exposed after it had settled. Next was the rendered letterbox and retaining wall which still needs a final coat of Dulux Weathershield in Hogs Bristle once all the landscaping is finished.
It is hard to believe that the huge pit is now a shallow depression thanks to the retaining wall and more layers of sand, gravel plus a top dressing of loam. I’ve put a lot of effort into making sure we abided by the guidelines but yet managed to have something both functional and interesting. Time will tell how successful I was.
- Required dimensions from our Instrument 88B:
- Area = 13.29m2
- Volume = 1.89 m3
- Batters: Height= 150mm, Width= 450mm
- Separate new Outlet Pit as rain garden is now higher than the Inter-Allotment drainage pit
- Surge pit 150mm lower than the new Outlet Pit
- Total Depth minimum 800mm comprising of three layers:
- Bottom layer of gravel minimum 150mm
- Transition (middle) layer of fine sand minimum 100mm
- Top layer of loamy sand mix minimum 400mm
- Planting with at least 50% Carex, Sedge or Melaleuca
- Mulch of river stone, basalt or sandstone
The layers of the rain garden make it resemble a layered cake:
[image from: zig-zags-over-the-rainbow-cake from www.joann.com]
With the extra layers to raise the height our rain garden now appears more like:
[image from Betty Crocker:Betty Crocker Rainbow cake]
The garden has been scraped down 100mm, stones, bricks and builders rubbish removed and decent soil spread ready for the lawn of Sir Walter Buffalo turf. The Irrigation system is in with drip feed to the flower beds and pop up sprinkler heads for the lawns. The control box is installed in the garage and weather sensor will be installed once the fence is.
Enough talking here’s some progress photos:
The rain garden taking shape:
I enjoyed choosing the native plants at Plantmark and enjoyed it even more when the landscapers planted them for me🙂
Rain Garden Planting:
[Plus Anigozanthos Bush Revolution, Ficinia nodosa and Xanthorrhoea glauca]
The 1.5m rear easement has been planted up with a mix of banksia, grevillea and callistemon (bottlebrush) which will eventually form a privacy hedge in case our neighbour’s bamboo hedge disappears. Hopefully these plants will also encourage the birds to visit from nearby Cattai Creek too.
Rear Easement Planting:
Shaded side path planting of Philodendron:
[standard and Philodendron ‘Gold Bullion’]
[Xanthorrhoea johnsonii & Kangaroo Paw]
I’m pleased with how the rain garden and ‘river’ of lucky stones turned out:
[Plenty of opportunities for shots of it in the rain at the moment…]
The last plant was in and I was off back to the UK an hour later, talk about cutting it fine. Fast forward a month and the fencers visited in my absence.
X marks the spot … or not.
Despite both a flag and the landscaper highlighting the irrigation pipe the fencers managed to put a post smack bang through the pipes. That turf is now well and truly watered in…
Fence looks good though and so far has stood up to some high winds.
Now I’m back and the landscapers have returned to edge the rain garden and roll the lawn. The gates are being made as I write and will be installed next week and then that is phase 2 of the landscaping complete.
Front, back and sides:
Not the first cut of the lawn but the finished photos 🙂
[Austral Heron block retaining wall in ‘Limestone’]
[Now I have my Hills Hoist in the rain seems never ending…]
Phase 3 will be transforming this 6 metres wide lawn at the side into a lap pool and spa. No time frame on that yet, its not going to be in by the Summer of 2016 but hopefully by the following Summer.
Meanwhile back at the ranch …
Seven months on and PCI, Handover and Maintenance issues are still dragging on but whilst I was away the fire place was fixed and then Hubby painted it. He was tempted to follow our neighbour’s recommendation and paint it burgundy but used the Dulux ‘Gaiety Tan’ we’d previously agreed on.