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house update: re-grading the yard

100_6860.JPGIsn’t it lovely when a friend shows up with an unexpected gift? In most peoples’ lives this might take the form of baked goods, or a potted plant, but for us it recently took the form of our friend Justin bringing us about ten tons of clay and re-grading our yard for us. Our yard was a very steep slope, much too steep for the fruit orchard and vegetable garden that I want to plant. Although this planned garden was one of our main reasons for buying this particular property, we weren’t expecting to be able to fix the grading any time soon, having run out of money fixing the electricity, plumbing, windows, heating, kitchen, bathrooms, and all the other stuff that we considered a higher priority.
100_6867.JPGJustin even put aside all the topsoil for me before putting down the clay so I can use it to fill my garden beds.
100_6868.JPGAnd as an added bonus, he cut a trench away from our basement door, which we’ve now filled with gravel, so rain water will no longer leak under the door!
100_6869.JPGAll this was said to be a gift from Xan, the little guy in the middle of this picture, Justin and Nathalie’s son. Matt and I have been doing a lot of baby-sitting for them the last few months, and the yard re-grading was their family’s way of thanking us. I must say, this beats the ice cream and three dollars an hour I used to get for baby-sitting in high school!
Now I’m getting ready to plant a clover lawn. The hype is that it doesn’t need mowing, it’s less allergenic than grass, more drought resistant than grass, and adds nitrogen to the soil. Oh, and it can grow in rocky clay, so we won’t have to purchase top-soil, and seed enough for our entire lawn is going to cost only about $40. It sounds too good to be true, but I’ll post an update when it comes in and let everyone know how the experiment goes.

Comments

Comment from Kevin S. Clarke
Time: February 23, 2008, 5:23 pm

I’ll be interested to hear about the clover lawn. I’ve been pondering that, too, lately.

We also just bought a house with a steep slope out back. I’d like to do something so we have a bit more usable land. I’m not sure how we go about it though (other than just hiring someone).

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