Dig it up and bring home the Patina


This isn't one of those blog posts. You know the ones with the pretty photos. Well that's not true. There are a lot of pretty photos but they aren't mine. They will be eventually, but this is a "before" post of sorts. Yippee right?

Back to reno and smash around here. 

My house is out in the country kind of and we don't really have neighbours except on one side. Our vegetable garden that we set up when we moved into our home is close-ish to their yard and also to a really wet area of our property that just sinks in the spring. 


On Easter weekend , Trevor and I dismantled all the raised pressure treat beds that were here. You can see the outlines of where they stood. For the life of me I can't seem to find a photo from back in this blog of them all growing and pretty in the summer. The search feature on this here blog is not what I once had and alas I cannot find them. You'll have to imagine them.

A few of the more aggressive plants ie. raspberry bush and hops that tend to spread were dug out first and will NOT be returning. This area will be rototilled and seeded and turned back into lawn.

The wood was not of any use for repurposing so an epic fire ensued once it stopped raining.  Our happy little shed we took on last year is in the background. We finally got a chance to get the wiring done so that there is a light out there, and it will have a light on the front as well. Good things come to those who are patient. I'm just telling myself that as things never happen as quickly as I'd like but I guess that makes it that much more satisfying when it is done right?

Now for some inspiration of where I'm headed with this thing.

Many of these photos are from my Pinterest board [do you follow along?] s and the images are linked to their sources.

 The new area that is going to be dug up is going to get big raised beds that are higher than the old ones to keep the weeds and grass from cutting more at bay. I would love to do cedar but I think we are going to go with the Sienna pressure treat. [brown stain but much cheaper than cedar]. We are going to pea gravel the areas surrounding them so we have a bit better drainage than the mulch that stays wet. Plus it will be fun to crunch around and walk on.

The low maintenance plantings that look like they are just coming out of the gravel is what I am going for. Larger island style plantings and less maintenance. I love gardening but am being realistic about the time I can afford to it these days and still have it make me happy and not nuts. I have vowed off large grasses for the immediate future. They get big so quickly, I hate having to cut them down and eventually keep splitting and they always start falling over and look messy. So no more grasses for me right now.

The above photo is from Patina Farm and gives the idea of the plantings next to the pea gravel. It also echos the colour of our shed etc. 



All the boxwood and terracotta. I guess this image really is about the feel. The european old world feeling. 

 Another great shot of the boxwoods and natural looking landscape where everything feels like it has been there forever and just started growing in a natural pattern. 

This backyard is one of my first and foremost inspirations for outside. Obviously Brooke's backyard being in California and mine being in Niagara Canada the zones are a smidge different and the dealing with winter and never ending springs thing. They have also edged the borders of the pea gravel with mulch which is what we are going to attempt. I thought about flagstone and even brick to make a path and divide the grass from the pea gravel and make it easier to cut the grass without flinging rocks everywhere but I think the mulch border is going to look more natural and provide a nice divide.

This photo gives a good look at the raised beds sitting amongst the pea gravel. Most of my raised beds will be herbs and vegetables. Another bonus of this move will be the closer proximity of the gardens to our actual patio. I can do more puttering while Emma plays at the table and she can still talk to me.

You can faintly see the orange line of the marking paint we used to draw out the new space. Plus all my helpers waiting for me to finish taking pictures.

That galvanized trough was on our front porch last year and felt massive on the porch but looks completely dinky sitting by itself in the middle of the space. I am planning to grow some kind of tree in it. Either Japanese maple or an espalier fruit tree if I can find one out of it for a little height. We cannot plant a tree directly into the ground anywhere in this area of our backyard because of our septic system.

So that's the beginning of this little adventure. Can't wait to share more as we go along.

Have a great day everyone,

Welcome to the Oliver and Rust blog.

This blog is written by Meg and includes tales of the renovations of her home and the shop she owns in Fonthill, Ontario. This blog goes back nine years, much before the shop was born if you are in the mood for reading, photos and some funny stories. The home you see and the decor inside belongs to Meg, and her husband Trevor. If you are new here, welcome. We are glad you stopped by.

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