Friday, April 29, 2022

A Little Something Other Than Ukraine

If you've been following, you know about the 1200 year drought California is experiencing. Back on June 11, 2021 I posted about the water usage to maintain the grass in the front yard. The month of June turned out to be even worse. The water bill was for 21,692 gallons of water. 

So, we stopped watering and installed a drip system to the two trees, Rosemary Bush, Butterfly Bush, the the prickly things down by the mail box. 

If you've never experienced a lawn without water and an air temperature hovering around 100 degrees, you get this:

Of course I had a plan. Since we had the air conditioner replaced last Summer, accessing the back yard through that side of the house is all but impossible. The new A/C (bigger than the one we had) left, maybe 24" to get by it. I can squeeze through, but a wheelbarrow or a trash can will not go through. So, install a walkway to the gate on the other side of the yard. 

I dug this out for the walkway only to realize the cost of removing the grass with a sod cutter was astronomical. Time for plan B. Filled in the strip I dug out and started laying pavers. 

Remember the new name of this blog and the fact I have trouble walking let alone carrying pavers that weigh about 30 pounds each. Add bags of sand to set the pavers on, at 50 pounds a bag, and yours truly was being beat to shit on a daily basis. But I persisted and after almost a month, the walkway was completed. 

And that ladies and gentlemen is only the beginning. Now the grass needs to be dead. We decided to use the solarization method. Essentially, cover the area you want dead with clear plastic (after watering the night before) and seal the edges with rocks, pavers, scalloped edging, or anything heavy. The moisture under the plastic heats up and kills anything under it including grass, weeds, and plant seeds. Then all you have to do is scrape off the dead grass/weeds. Ha ha ha, sorry. 

Currently the wife and I are covering the yard about 10 feet every other day. At our ages, that's all the energy we have, but we're getting there. This is as of yesterday. 

Once we're finished we have to allow 2 months for the proper cooking and then remove the plastic and cover with landscape fabric and bark nuggets. 

I already did the little spot on the side of the garage to see how it would look. Thought I'd show this one after we replaced the fence. The old picture, the fence looked rather ratty. 

Lastly, I removed the rocks (for holding down the plastic on other parts of the yard) and replaced it with bark nuggets under the pink flower bush. It's a favorite of the honey bees and the hummingbirds.

Looks pretty snazzy me thinks. Jeez, John you're rubbing off on me. Kept the cement turtle too. 

That's it for now. 

Stay Tuned. 


  1. Congratulations on a job well done! This drought is teaching us many things about conservation. Hopefully, this next winter gives us more snowpack here. Hope things are well with you. =)

    1. Thanks Emily. We're all good, even the anti-vax children have fully recovered.

  2. Mark
    One positive thing about this drought is much less mowing---I imagine the lakes are taking a hit as well