And the Concrete is Done!

The side yard . . . I have big plans for this, since those windows and door are to our room, which, if we ever build a second level, will be the school room. That space will be a container garden with a nice little clay fireplace in the corner and a table and chair so I can sit out there and work.

The breezeway in front of our house. The stepped up bit to the right is because the bathroom is a different level than the house and we have our washing machine up there. I would show a photo of that, but it’s a disaster right now. We have tin roofing making a sort of lean-to there to protect the washing machine, but now that we have all this concrete (there was just a little pad there before) we are going to build a proper room, one that is big enough for my sewing table, which can be switched out with a bed if anyone decides to visit us.

The dirt at the end is where we will have our lawn. It’s in front of the living room.

And here is the entrance. The rest of the “callejon” is not our responsibility, though I’ve considered filling and laying concrete there, too. The next doorway you can see to the left is Vardin’s property.

I took these photos when the entrance was still wet, so here’s a shot from the breezeway, looking down to the side yard. You can see the flower bed continued a little ways. That will have a brick edge on top of the concrete to give more room and a nicer look. We’ll be building a box to cover the pipes and also to put the gas cylinder outside, since I would rather not have it in the house. To the right is the kitchen and the breezeway.

7 thoughts on “And the Concrete is Done!

  1. I make home brew stucco out of one part portland, one part hydrated lime and one part mason sand-add any color viva latex paint or concrete dye. Make little one cup batches until you find the water and paint mix that works for you and just use the same ratio for the big mix. It will be pastel no matter what because of the nature of stucco. In your climate, you might add a little fungicide (antifreeze works well) to keep the black mold from growing on your finished walls. There is a vast amount of information about do-it-yourself stucco online, little tricks to make it spread better and hold up longer but the main thing is keep the mixes the same or you will have different colors on your walls, just a little but it will show.
    Cementing that path into your pace will really cut down on your tracked in dirt.
    It all looks good, I’m happy for you.

    • Great idea, Norm! Thanks! We have been discussing doing it ourselves to save money and that sounds like it will work very nicely, especially with the antifreeze idea.

  2. I love how it is all coming together… FINALLY!!

    But, I thought you were going to look at another place, given the ‘dog’ situation (or has that resolved itself now?).

    As to the lawn, when are you looking at doing that, and what lawn spp do you have over there? What are the conditions, lots of sunlight, semi-shade? Is it a loamy soil, sandy or more of a clay??

    I could come over there and do a consult if you like, my fees would simply be coffee!!!! ?

    • Yes, we couldn’t afford another place at this point, so the next best thing was to fix this one up. The dog is still there. We’re putting in a gate to keep it out, though it is tied up most of the time.

      It would be AWESOME if you could come give a consult. I’d even give you three squares a day. ? The dirt is kind of sandy, but it packs very hard, almost like concrete. The lawn area is sunny from about 9 am until sundown. The sod is San Augustine . . . the only stuff we could find that is sod and not seed (don’t really want to try seed with kids and birds). The guy at the nursery said we’d need to put down some proper soil and then the sod, so we’ve left room for that, but any tips are more than welcome.

  3. If the soil is remotely ‘ok’, there wouldn’t be any real need to put in fresh stuff!! its just an additional expense that you could utilise elsewhere…

    San Augustine ?? Any chance of a Botanical name, as common names change ALL over the place!! given the amount of sunlight, its pretty much full sun, so a lot of types would be ok!!

    If you can find any sort of ‘organic matter’, compost, then you could put that over the soil (sandy) to increase its water holding capacity (WHC), this will save irrigation later, but if not, its ok. When the lawn is down, and if regular mowing the clippings back ONTO the lawn, it will increase the homogonous zone, and this will increase it WHC…

    Fertilisers are based on Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium (N:P:K). Now, a good fertiliser such as Thrive Complete with an N.P.K. mix of 5:7:4 is higher in phosphorus and therefore good for root vegetables, flowers, fruits, woody shrubs, roses, canes, citrus, sweet corn and legumes. A nitrogen-rich mixture of N.P.K. 10:4:6, is better for leaf and stem vegetables (cabbage, lettuce, celery, rhubarb, etc.), leafy shrubs and foliage plants. N – Nitrogen will ONLY increae green growth, and too much will have the lawn really long. Urea, is generally, around 60! P – Phosphorus is good for stem and shoot development (runners so it will cover an area well and ‘knit’ in quickly as well), where as Potassium (K) is generally ‘locked up’ in the soil, so it is not to be overly used. Something around a 10:6:6 would be ok…

    I will do some more later tonight or tomorrow, as I have to shoot through now!!!

    • I have no idea what the botanical name of the grass is, but I can find out next time we go to the nursery. The soil does grow weeds, but not much else. Either it’s not great or I just have a black thumb (which is totally possible). We were also told to put “brosa” or a lot of dried leaves down under a layer of soil before putting the sod down, that would be the same thing, right?

      I have to say, the consult sounds like a good idea . . . you have some great advice! Thank you.

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