Sunday, October 19, 2008

New back yard

Winter is approaching, and with it - maybe - some rain. For us and our Newfies, that means mud season in our abysmal back yard. But now there are Eight Paws of the Newfpocalypse, so we decided to install a lawn (and underground sprinklers).

Here's pretty much what the yard looked like before:
That darker patch in the middle used to be a planter bed, which was super successful last year but not so much so this year. Yuki's puppyhood took a toll. Anyway, I used a Ridgid digging fork for the demo (about $30, bought to replace a crappy Craftsman fork I finally got my money back on. The Craftsman was the second free replacement after the original conked out). Here's how much fun hand turning soil is:
It is good exercise, though, and the rental rototillers were heavy and our CRV lacks a trailer hitch. I think the whole demolition/grading (with a rake, mostly) took about six hours for 450 square feet. Hey, small yard. But small yard full of junkola. I found a bunch of former paving in part of the yard:
and smaller odds and ends, too. This place would have been a good archaeology lab, though it is too rich in artifacts to be realistic.
Anyway, here's a view of the prepped yard, and the big stack of sod (About $95, including sales tax and a $5 deposit on the pallet):
At this point, I hadn't laid in the sprinkler, but I squared that away in about an hour using flexible PVC, a couple of sprinkler heads (our side yard is too small to irrigate without watering the porch and/or driveway). The pipe, sprinkler heads, joints, timer and such cost about $130, so besides time, this project was pretty inexpensive. The labor was laborious, though:
You lay sod just like flooring, really:
And here's mostly finished:
I misunderestimated on the square footage, so I ran out just as I finished the yard. As in, I ran out of sod at the same time as I ran out of places I needed to put it. Now all we need to do is see if it takes, and holds up to the canines, and the winter, and...


Anonymous said...

so when's the new sod, new sprinkler's back yard party? - maria

Alasdair said...

In the immortal words of Sheryl Crow, come on over :)