Bye bye, sandpit

It was meant to be next year’s project, but we got rid of it in about an hour and a half this morning. It wasn’t the plan for this morning, but for some reason the plan changed (I’m a little hazy on the details myself). The sandpit has finally gone.

Getting the wooden structure apart was no mean feat. It was held together with a large number of very long screws, clearly put in with a whizzy power screwdriver, which made getting them out without the aid of such a gadget fairly interesting. We took off the top layer of planks to find cross pieces, plastic sheeting and a sizeable family of spiders underneath, and I would just like to take this opportunity to apologise to the spiders for the unceremonious eviction. The upper part of the sides came next, then we managed to lever the base out and put it on the patio to dismantle. The base had started to rot, and there was a good deal of water and sand underneath, all held in by the plastic sheet. Can’t help feeling that some sort of breathable membrane might have been better.

The ground underneath was very compacted, so J dug it over with a fork and brought in some of the banked-up soil from the flowerbed we made next to the sandpit. The level was still a little low, and we did consider using what we dig out from the front before we gravel, but there is so much bindweed at the front that I don’t want to risk it. This part of the garden is one of the few areas where we don’t have bindweed and I’d like to keep it that way. So we emptied our last remaining bag of multipurpose compost into it, and went to the DIY shop for more. A second bag went in, along with a generous helping of slow release granules, just to try and get some nutrients in there. Then we moved a lot of our pots onto the area to make it look a bit more like a flower bed. We’ll need to have a think about what gets planted in there – it’s a fairly shady spot.

So it looks like this:

SONY DSC

 

And the view along the bed looks like this:

SONY DSC

 

And I think it makes the garden look a bit bigger. Things currently doing well:

Heucheras, centaurea, azalea, dicentra, hollyhock and ox-eye daisy

Heucheras, centaurea, azalea, polemonium, dicentra, hollyhock and ox-eye daisy

Hostas, pieris and hydrangea

Hostas, pieris, marigolds and hydrangea

Centaurea - I was just to slow to get a photo with a bumblebee

Centaurea – I was just to slow to get a photo with a bumblebee

Troughs under the living room window - a few flowers are just starting to appear

Troughs under the living room window – a few flowers are just starting to appear

Ceanothus - flowers have started opening in the last couple of days. Not very clear in this photo but I failed to get a close-up as it was so windy

Ceanothus – flowers have started opening in the last couple of days. Not very clear in this photo but I failed to get a close-up as it was so windy

The rose in the front garden. This took several attempts because of the wind, and isn't a great picture but was the best I managed to get

The rose in the front garden. This took several attempts because of the wind, and isn’t a great picture but was the best I managed to get

So all in all it’s looking pretty good. The tomatoes are growing and their fruit is starting to set. I planted out some lychnis in the “nursery” bed by the fence, along with a few other things that really needed to get out of their pots. A mystery pest has had a good go at my asters, but I’m hopeful that I’ve rescued what I can. And I refuse to let the less-than-balmy weather get me down!

Happy gardening!

 

 

 

 

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