Lawn Elimination and Soil Emancipation

How to turn your average suburban yard into a food bonanza.

Step one: Evaluate said yard. As a designer you may want to work with existing structures, such as paths and laundy poles to minimize digging. This designer chose not to. Perhaps this is because he had a willing helper along to do the dirty work (or maybe it was because it worked better with the overall design).
From the top of the hill.

From the bottom of the hill.

Step two: Dig.

Step three: Build.
Step four: Repeat.

Step five: Repeat Again.

Step six: Hire cheap labor to finish the job.Johnny was paid in chocolate cake (which he helped make).

Step Seven: Plant
Step Eight: Fertilize.
Thanks Stanno.

Step Nine: Try to avoid the mud

Step ten: Ta-dah!
From the top of the hill.

From the bottom of the hill.

For this garden we chose to make curved raised beds. The raised beds terraced the yard which was sloped in two directions. The curved beds were just cool. The new main path will be laid in a curve going down the hill along the side of the beds. This allows more room for a small orchard, which will be planted along with wildflowers in the bare topsoil next to the house. Beds along the fence line were leveled and prepared for subtropical fruit trees and vines.

Post-engagement Wedding #1

First of all, I can’t believe no one commented on the last post. I loved that tiny shower bathroom. Couldn’t get over it. Really.

So went up to Aukland last weekend for two reasons. We were hired to do a garden installation (more on that later) and our friends Rory and Catherine were getting married. Being engaged has heightened my wedding senses during normal every day life, so I was sure that going to my first post-engagement wedding was going to be an idea overload.

And it was. Unfortunately I forgot my camera, so I don’t have any pictures from the actual wedding. In summary, she looked gorgeous. He made a great speech. The church was fabulous. But our favorite overall element of the whole shebang was the reception venue which was in Fabel’s Rug Gallery, an old warehouse converted into a rug gallery and events space. I didn’t even know there were rug galleries. And even if I did, I didn’t know you could hold events in them. It was all very cool. In fact much cooler and more sophisticated than anything the boy and I could pull off. They even had a jazz band.

The other thing that struck me was the size of their wedding. When we were sitting in church (between devout prayers) and at the cocktail hour (between devout champagne-ing) we were trying to figure out how many people were there. We were guessing about 150. Hmm… so this is how many people will be at our wedding we thought. Wrong.

A closer inspection at the table charts revealed that there were less than 70 people there. Our wedding will be more than twice as big… maybe even three times, and that’s assuming we cut our guest list by half. That’s a lot of people to feed. Start growing those veggies folks.

Age-old problem solved?


How to stop habitual shower-peers. Build a bathroom so tiny that the entire thing is a shower. Thank you to the City Groove Hostel for unravelling this enigma with your clever space-saving bathroom. Yes, it may be a bit inconvenient if there are two people needing to shower/ potty at the same time. And yes, the toilet paper did get wet. But hey, I’ve never been able to sit on the pot and shower simultaneously. Have you? Not only space saving, but time saving too.