Thursday, March 28, 2013

Espalier Garden Bed Project - Part 1



It's all taking shape!
My espalier garden bed project.

It is finally time to install my new garden bed. It has been a year in the planning. So in between cutting the curds and waxing the cheese wheels, organising the school gardening agenda and kid wrangling, we have made a start to our new garden.

Here's our work so far into the project...

Stage 1 - original

Stage 2 - plants removed and re-potted

Stage 3 - removal of old bricks and bed EXPANSION

Stage 4 - choosing the right bricks and layout

Stage 5 - removal of the invasive Kikuyu grass

Why I've chosen to plant an espalier.

Every summer I buy bags and bags of stone fruit, plums being like catnip to my children. No sooner is a new bag of plums in the fridge, the plastic bag is soon discarded on the bench due to being entirely consumed in a whirl-wind of ferocious snacking.

I'm all for the healthy eating habits, but I was becoming quite concerned about my kids' appetites increasing as they get nearer to teenage-hood. No longer will a loaf of bread last a few days, but be devoured within one afternoon after school to replace all that spent brain energy from learning.

I need more fruit trees! But how was I going to fit them into my garden design?
An espalier fruit tree was the perfect answer.
Let's just hope plums espalier well.

The garden bed project has managed to also solve another problem in my yard.

It has provided 'fill' down the other side of the shed. Where there was once a gaping chasm, there is now walking room and space for a potting table!!! (Oh joy!)

Fill almost complete. Gravel and gate next.

Our new espalier garden bed will have new fill to combat the invasion of the Kikuyu grass. As lovely as it is for a lawn, with its Australian summer durability, it really is a gardener's nightmare to weed out.

COMING UP NEXT MONTH

  • Finish off the 'fill' on side of shed.
  • Spread pea gravel.
  • Hang new gate to the side of the shed.
  • Start the concreting in the base of the new garden bed, and build up wall.



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