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Basic Garden Refurbishment


 
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macdanger
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Joined: 05 Jul 2011
Posts: 2
Location: Mayo, Ireland

PostPosted: Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:09 pm    Post subject: Basic Garden Refurbishment Reply with quote

Hi

First time poster on here looking for some advice Smile. Apologies if this thread is posted in the incorrect section or anything.

My sister's garden is currently a wasteland - there's not much soil, some rubble and lots of weeds!!! She's leaving Ireland to move to Canada for a couple of years and is planning to rent her house (in Dublin) while she's away. I'm planning to fix up the garden a little so that it's low maintenance and is at least presentable.

My plan at the moment is:
1. Clear away the rubble and weeds
2. Lay some sort of "plastic" covering which will allow rain to percolate but stop weeds from springing up
3. Plant a few shrubs (miniature evergreens maybe?) through holes in the "plastic".
4. Spread pebbles / stones over the plastic covering

I know it's pretty basic but does this sound ok?

As regards the covering, what would you think of just using heavy plastic perforated with holes for drainage? Or would I be better going with the permeable cover you buy?

The garden is 72m square - how many bags / tonnes of pebbles would I need to cover it?

Also, I'm planning on hanging a side gate - was just down in B&Q and they have a metal gate suitable for a width 840 - 920mm (the gap is ~ 860mm). What's the best way to hang this? Just bolt it to the block wall? Or put a timber jamb onto the wall and hang the gate from that?

Thanks in advance
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kindredspirit
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 03, 2011 5:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Proper weed membrane is better than plastic sheeting as the latter would make the soil underneath sour and anaerobic. You'll still get some weeds growing on top of the gravel though. Sad

6 tons of pea gravel would cover that area and pea gravel is the easiest to spread. (and cheapest to buy)

How you hang the gate is up to you but a wooden jamb would eventually rot in time.

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macdanger
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
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Joined: 05 Jul 2011
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Location: Mayo, Ireland

PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi

I've received advice on another forum to:

Lay down a bunch of layers of newspaper for weed suppression, plant through it. Cover it with wood chips instead of pebbles.

Is this going to be a good idea considering our wet climate? Planning to start tomorrow morning so any help would be appreciated Smile

Thanks in advance
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gardenman
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 05, 2011 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not a bad option! While plastic will leave the soil in a very poor condition, woven weed barrier's don't do much better. Any time I have taken up one of these barriers, the soil underneath is like plasticine. No structure, pore space, organic matter or earthworms. Not good in the long run.
While the newspapers and bark will give good initial control, they will really only allow the plants time to establish, weeds will start poking through in a matter of weeks - however in much reduced numbers. Word of warning, birds love to throw the bark around looking for food!!
Best option. Use the bark for establishment and choose a planting plan that will encourage the shrubs to exclude light to the weeds below thus restricting them. i.e. plant plenty!

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Bill gardener
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2011 4:38 pm    Post subject: Gate Brackets Reply with quote

There should be brackets you can buy which will allow you to fix your gate to the wall and prevent you from having to buy a wooden panel as well.
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tippben
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Joined: 15 Jan 2011
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 3:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I tend to favour a double layer of cardboard (free from boxes in stores!) and then wood chips. I'd contact local tree surgeons, as they are often happy to give away their chippings. Put at least a 10cm thick layer down, as they do degrade. You can then lay stepping stones or suchlike on top. We use slate for this, and also as an edging to keep the chips where we want them, it's easy to knock it in vertically with a rubber mallet.

I'd be a bit careful when planting though, as they will rob the soil of nitrogen, so I'd plant first. Add lots of compost, and some slow release feed, plant out, then lay the mulch down around your plantings. I'd also use a bit of glyphosate on the weeds first, as many will push their way through a mulch, whether membrane and gravel, or chips.
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Greengage
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2011 6:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Put in a lawn, Pay someone to cut it and claim it as an expense thereby reducing your tax bill.
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