Thursday, September 2, 2010

Thinking ahead - what to do in the backyard? Driveway decisions

We're not that interested in gardening, weeding, planting, watering, trimming, cutting, mowing or any other form of outdoors torture, so whatever we do outside the house should ideally be zero maintenance. Wonder if there's anything like "below-zero" maintenance, like a tree that also cleans our windows and washes our cars?

Anyway, we don't have a huge backyard, it'll be about 15m wide and 7m deep with a little slope towards the rear fence. We'll get a big deck from our outdoor room extending past the roofline - still not sure if I'll attempt to build it myself and risk serious loss of limbs from unavoidable powertool-related injury, or pay someone else to risk bodily harm for me. Anyway, apart from the deck, we need to cover up our neighbour's rather hideous garage walls (yep, two of them) that are on our boundary. Most likely use a bamboo screen as in this photo below.

Also really liking the dark bark or whatever it is around those green things (I think they're called plants). Plus the rocks around the scrawny tree - they probably don't need water or trimming, so they're in. As for grass, undecided on "real" or plastic grass - not sure our little Jack Russell will enjoy rolling around in recycled polypropylene!

And for the sides of the house - one side is behind our double garage, the other side has the laundry - thinking of just sticking down some crushed rock or gravel, similar to the above picture.

Also received one quote so far for our driveway & crossover - it's a pretty big driveway at 11m x 5m wide. Exposed aggregate is only $900 more than a coloured concrete (not as much of a premium as we thought it might be) so we'll probably go for a dark grey/charcoal exposed aggregate driveway. Still waiting on one more quote to come in before booking that job in.

Oh yeah - and Tomorrow: When The War Began is on general release today; it's a pretty good screen version of John Marsden's book - go see it!

Margo & Davo from At The Movies seemed to like it too, and you know you're not allowed to disagree with these two legends...



  1. Hi Guys - been loving the blog and it's been so informative that I've only just found something to add in terms of landscaping.

    You mentioned possibly using "crushed rock or gravel" - really need to advise you against that idea. We have gravel (2 - 5 mm crushed white rock) down the side of our house and have a constant battle to keep it outdoors. It is always in our / the kids boots and has led to much marking / scratching of the floorboards. Our neighbours (we have a townhouse) who had a dog replaced all the gravel within a month as it was always bringing the gravel in on it's paws.

    Suggest you at least get stones that are 20-30 mm's in size if you take this option. We are looking at pavers in the new house tto avoid this completely.

    Good luck with possession and finishing off! FANTASTIC JOB

    Cheers, Heath

    PS : we are doing a Metricon Sycamore and just about to have the slab laid (hopefully) - very exciting!

  2. Love the outdoor tiling for our future smallish backyard. Got a quote from one tiler. Just labour alone is $35/m. That's a lot of money....good luck guys.




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