Back to the grind

I’ve had the best 8 weeks ever but sadly our break from work is rapidly coming to an end as I prepare to return to the grind tomorrow. But that’s okay because I love my job and look forward to catching up with my workmates again.

Chris the scoundrel has only just disclosed the fact that he’s not returning to work until Friday which gives him an extra 4 days! Besides giving him a break from his nagging wife, it’ll be a great opportunity for him to have some down time before returning to his pressured job and working over the long weekend.

What great progress we’ve made over the last 8 weeks, in fact since May when we first switched our minds and hearts on to this project of ours. We realise that the transformation of our ordinary backyard into an extraordinary permaculture garden will be an ongoing commitment and work in progress but it’s been such an exciting time designing and building our beautiful and productive backyard space.

So far we’ve brought in about 1.5 tonnes of premium garden soil, about half a tonne of potting mix and about the same of compost, about 8 bags of cow manure, 3 bags of chook poo, 1 bag of sheep manure, 4 bags of mushroom compost, 1 bag of blood and bone and 1 dolomite, 6 bags of sugar cane mulch, 2 bags of shredded lucern and 1 bale of hay.

We’ve made about 1 cubic metre of organic compost and mulched about 2 large green otto bins worth of eucalypt leaves and twigs.

We brought in second hand cypress pine and some new and old hardwood. We’ve brought in about 20 square metres of steel mesh and 30m of wire for the chook nook. We’ve bought 3 sheets of corrugated iron, 8 square metres of second hand pavers and 10 square metres of sandstone flagging. We’ve used about 10 bags of quick set concrete and 85 bags of cement and brought in 2 tonnes of sand. We’ve built 3 concrete tank pads, installed 3 new water tanks and increased our rainwater harvesting capacity from 6,000 litres to 12,000. We’ve built an additional 15 square metres of usable garden beds so far and moved I don’t know how many tonnes of rocky soil from one storage place to the next. We’ve used nearly 60 metres of primary irrigation line and 15 metres of stormwater pipe and brought in 50 metres of greywater pipe.

We’ve almost completed our chook nook and hope to have it ready by the October long weekend just in time for the arrival of the adopted girls. We also have at least another 20 square metres of raised rock garden beds to go into the backyard area but this will depend on finding enough available on-site rock and the availability of Uncle Robot.

We’ve planted 11 of our 30 fruit trees, planted 20 varieties of vegies and 16 types of herbs and we’re already harvesting some of the produce.

We’ve done no ironing, have only cleaned the house 3 times, have eaten extremely good food and shared some wonderful, funny and very memorable days with Uncle Robot.

What a journey it’s been so far and we both wish we could have the rest of the year off! But until our next break our work from here will mainly be done on our days off and during the warm summer evenings. It will be a lovely time to tinker on unfinished projects and potter in our new garden.

Here’s a quick look at what we’ve been up to….

We've changed this...

to this.

And this...

to this.

This...

to this.

And this...

to this.

From this...

to this.

And this...

To this!

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