Maybe you remember me showing you the two choices of paving and asking you which you preferred. Well I chose the one on the right, most especially because I loved the soft dimpled feel of it and indeed it is lovely to walk on with bare feet.But it is beautiful too as you shall see. (Paving is Marshalls’ Fairstone Flamed Narias – more info HERE.)
Here is how the garden looked just before the workmen arrived. I had cleared out all loose items that I wanted to keep. The start date had been pencilled in as the beginning of July but in the end they came on the 22nd: a Friday.
The first thing to be done was to remove the paving slabs from the upper area and sort out the new trellis. They did have a problem with the skip being late in arriving which slowed them down a bit.
I was quite glad in the end that they started on a Friday because that gave me the weekend to coat the trellis and posts to match the fence. (Three coats – 24hrs (well almost) apart.)
On the Monday they removed the paving from the lower level and started laying hard core where the paving was going to be. They also finished off the top of the wall supporting the higher level. They did have another problem today because although the paving wasn’t needed yet it should have arrived and it didn’t!
Nothing much changed on Tuesday except that the drainage channel was added. The drainage was originally planned to be along the wall between the upper and lower levels but there were wall foundations that got in the way. However the one strip of drainage along the side of the house was very neat.
Wednesday. Scott had come originally with two helpers: his assistant and a trainee but on Wednesday he only had the trainee, as Sean, his assistant, unfortunately had food poisoning.
The most exciting thing happened that day: the paving arrived. Of course this is only a small part of it.As you can see the weather was beginning to change and there was some rain.
The next day Scott was on his own, his assitant was not yet recovered and Scott thought he would get on faster without the trainee as he was beginning to lay the paving. This took longer than it might have done as Scott was having to mix the mortar as well as doing the laying.
Sean was back on Friday and so the paving laying was finished – almost. Photographs taken from above that day not to step on the paving.
Scott pointed out that the fence was at an angle which created a problem. So we decided to fill in the last few inches with slate. (My choice – Scot would have preferred gravel!) I looked at the architect plans of the site and yes that side of the garden is longer than the other. The people the other side have their garden a bit higher than mine too.
Scott had said at one point that he would come in Saturday morning but in the end he decided not to which I was quite pleased about as I find having workmen around and not having my normal routine and never able to really relax or start anything which needs proper concentration all a bit of a strain.
However on Monday Scott regretted his decision not to come in on Saturday because it was really wet. The worst day of all for rain and the main thing to complete that day was rendering the wall. Do you see how water changes the colour of the paving?
Just a few things to finish off, like the mortar, so on Tuesday Scott came back with his young son (who was on holiday of course). Still a bit wet as you can see, though part of that was for the mortar.
I hardly dared walk on the paving for the next couple of days as I didn’t want to risk upsetting the mortar but on Friday evening I started rubbing the lose mortar off the slabs and continued on Saturday and Sunday moved on to tidying up the flower beds.
I don’t know if you can see very well in this photograph but the top half shows the flower bed on the left before I lowered it and the bottom half how it looks now. The flower bed had long been an inch or so above the level of the paving as the original soil had been so poor that I had piled compost from my composters on it year after year until things started to flourish.
The original paving had been very uneven but had generally sloped back to front and left to right. Now the paving had been made level, left to right, not to have a puddle on the right and so the flower bed grew by several inches and had to be lowered. You’d be surprised what I dug out under the soil, no wonder things struggled.
While I was about it, I rearranged the planting. A space on the right for the two clematis I plan to grow, the pulmonaria moved to the left and a space left next to them for some hellebore. I am hoping that my snowdrops that were relocated to the left had corner will survive.
And here are some photographs of the final garden taken without rain or bright sunshine which I hope give a feel of the general look. As before, one photograph taken looking left and one looking right. And do you remember this with the clothes line up. The bed for the apple tree behind being newly created.Well now the clothes line has been relocated. So I will see the apple tree and not the washing when I sit on my settee.
And just to finish off a closer look at the paving.
The range of colour of the paving is from grey to red with lots of gold in the middle. Here are some of my favourite patterned slabs. And a last view from above. But you must imagine the colours even a little bit more intense. Lowering my view of the screen does it for me!