When altering an existing patio, do not toss any slabs. They can be used in gardens for levelling urns and you can be creative and design another area with these leftover pieces. A few years ago my 2’ x 2’ patio stones were removed and interlocking brick installed. I kept the large stones in the garage for about two years. When the brick work was finished there were several pieces remaining. With a little thought and a lot of slugging, a cute little patio surface is in place. It houses the barbecue, a little wrought iron table and has been very serviceable. It was decided to use some of the bricks with the larger stones and create a different look. This was not a difficult procedure, just time consuming and involved some lifting. Sand was purchased and the grass was dug, the area was levelled and then a vibrating machine was rented to pack everything in place. The only cost incurred was the sand and the rental of the machine totalling approximately $30.00.

Small Patio Built With Leftover Slabs and Brick

There is a large flower box in my yard. It was originally built to give privacy as there was no fence. I always had visions of a swimming pool, so after ten years finally took the plunge and had one installed. I have never regretted it.

Building Cedar Cover For Flower Box
The flower box is now incorporated into the backyard and acts as an entrance way. When it was built (using pressure treated wood) it looked great. As the years progressed the colour changed and to tell you the truth it was beginning to look hideous.

A quick fix took care of the problem. Purchase cedar 1 x 6 fence boards and cut to size. Stagger the boards (to match fence) and nail to the existing flower box.

When finished put the (1 x 6) fence boards along the top to create an edge and stain. That’s all there is to it.

The lumber yard was good enough to cut the boards for me. Just a few minor alterations required when the actual building of the flowerbox occurred. The end result is a sturdy, attractive flower box.

Also with the bits and pieces left over from making this flower box enough was salvaged to build the little one behind the garage. The total cost to cover the two flower boxes in cedar came to $120.00.

The large flower box measures approximately 4’ x 12’ and the smaller one is about 4 ’x 4.' With a little imagination and minimal cost I believe you can accomplish almost anything.

Completion of Flower Box Flower Box Stained and Thriving With Plants

Do the stairs on your front porch need work? However you cannot afford to have concrete poured or purchase precast. The solution cost approximately $60.00 and requires about four hours of your time. Several years ago I could not stand the sight of crumbling concrete on the edge of the stairs. Also there were three layers of paint all of them chipped. The answer quite simply was carpet. It looked neat and presentable also stood up well until the pouring of new stairs.

Carpeting The Stairs

Keep gardens organized and plants easily identified by starting a gardening book. Save all the tags and do a rough sketch of each garden listing the names of the flowers planted. This is a wonderful guide when referring to bulbs. Also if a friend or family member likes a specific variety of plant you can assist them with the exact name, correct spelling and instructions for planting. This may sound somewhat silly, but let me assure you I have referred to this guide on countless occasions.

Gardening Guide Gardening Guide

Describing the aspects of gardens and decorating, there is also the upkeep. We will refer to this as the dusting, vacuuming, scrubbing and cleaning chores. See I told you it was just like interior decorating! Let’s face facts you have housework all the time right? Well, maintaining gardens is far more relaxing than cleaning the oven. To that end lets talk about shortcuts and tips to assist with exterior decorating.

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