Bree and I were talking about some of the fondest memories from growing up and a couple things kept coming up – working in the garden with our grandparents, and helping our parents make food from scratch. The more we thought about it, the more we saw how these two things were connected, and that these were things that we would still like to do.
Bree challenged me to come up with a plan to make a garden in her backyard, and make it work within our backyard renovation budget. It turns out we don’t have a backyard renovation budget …. so salvaged, reclaimed and DIY here we go! This is how we created our backyard on a budget.
KIJIJI is my new best friend!!!
We started with a rough idea of what we wanted and what size we wanted to go with. We decided that a raised bed would give us enough space, and would be able to provide the best growth potential if we got good soil. Other options included finding a rototiller and hoping that the soil hadn’t been spoiled by too many summers of pool overflow.
We found all of our building materials for free in local ads on Kijiji. We decided to visit Home Depot for all the screws and fasteners to hold everything together. I wanted to make sure that we weren’t going to wake up one morning after a heavy rainfall and find that our walls had buckled under the extra weight of the rain.
I had to first sort all the wood and concrete by size, and then by usability. Some wood looked fine at first glance; but cracks, warping and other damage would definitely affect our build.
Next I had to very tediously remove all the nails, making the wood less like a stack of zombie ready weapons and more like an actual lumber pile.
The next step, mark out my lines and get my base/support ready. A couple of concrete supports buried provided the borders and added stability. We fixed the garden bed to the deck to help keep shape and give us the height/width/depth we were looking for.
I had all sorts of helpers every step of the way. But some of them were better for moral support than actual help (I’m talking about you Lucy [Great Dane]! Clifford [Puggle] was actually really interested, but never got in the way.)
After the edges were done, supported and reinforced it was time to get to the dirty work, literally! It was time to source the soil. We got a mix from one of our local nurseries; topsoil and triple mix combination and got it delivered. Unfortunately the soil came on the same day as some rain. Fortunately, there’s an 8 year old version of me that still loves the idea of playing in the mud.
Oh yeah, check out Bree’s post on using a washboard to get mud out of everything. … It probably might not have anything to do with moving 4 yards of dirt.
After a long and wet and muddy evening we got the garden bed filled. Victory!!!!!
Oh yeah! We met this gal while looking at the garden decorations section at the nursery. But Bree says there’s no such thing as Garden Raptor budget…