Saturday, October 12, 2013

Rebuilding the Rockery

About 2 years ago after I’d finished building the sleepout the rockery at the entrance to the garden was looking a real mess. It had already been falling apart slowly over the years since I first built it, but when I ran underground cabling to the sleepout, which went under the rockery, it fell apart even more. So I decided to get stuck in and fix it.
(See my post about how I originally created this area of the garden here).

I started with the rockery on the right hand side. I wanted to make sure it wasn’t going to fall apart again so easily so I used a good amount of concrete plaster to make it nice and strong, something I didn't do so well last time.

Once I got the right hand rockery finished off I filled it with garden mix ready to plant out.

Before I fixed the one on the left I decided to fix up the paving between the rockery and the steps going down to the sleep out. I’d been wanting to do this for some time and had in mind a way of tying it in with the overall design.

I filled the main area of the path with concrete and exposed the aggregate on the surface to create a non-slip finish. Into the concrete I set 3 slabs of blue stone rock. I was really pleased with how this little piece of path turned out. In the mean time I was getting a bit impatient and decided to plant out the right hand rockery. As you can see, I decided to go for a tropical theme.

This all took place around the same time I transplanted a medium sized Bangalow palm in the small garden next to the lower steps (see my post about that here)

So, it was now time to focus on the left hand rockery. By now the job had taken several months as I was just fitting it in around other tasks. I only worked on it when I had extra time and was in a patient mood.

Once I got all the stones in place and the pointing between them was done it was time to fill it with garden mix and to think about what I was going to plant.

In keeping with the tropical theme, I had another bungalow palm which I had temporarily put in a large pot. I also had a few Clivias growing in various places around my garden which I decided to transplant. Using these would save me spending any more money. Clivias are very easy to divide up and produce a wonderful display of colour in the spring. They grow really well, even in the shade.

So finally, after several months I got it to a point where it’s all repaired and planted out and it’s now quite pleasant walking through this area...

The tropical theme seems to be working pretty well through this part of the garden now...

Shame about the weeds growing between the pavers, which is an ongoing issue as I prefer not to spray them.

Eventually I’d like to replace the pavers with solid concrete the same way as I exposed the aggregate on the little path at the bottom. But that probably won’t happen any time soon. In the mean time I'll probably just keep using the weed eater to control them.


  1. Very Tropical looking results; I like it. I like like your original curved-brick steps, plus your new curved edges. What I use to keep ( most) weeds from growing between pavers is thick black poly sheet ( used before pouring concrete as vapor barrior). Very good job indeed, br.

    1. This path was my first attempt at laying pavers which I did more than 15 years ago. I've come to appreciate how TIME is the true test of how well a job was done. Perhaps I should pull them all up and start again.

  2. Ciao! Scopro ora il tuo bellissimo blog! Ci sono un sacco di piante che qui si conoscono pochissimo!
    Bellissima quell'idea di aiuola!

    Un saluto!

    1. Italian-English Translation:
      "Hello! I discovered your wonderful blog! There are a lot of plants that we know very little! Beautiful that idea of flower bed! A greeting!"

      Thanks Pontos for visiting my blog. I'm glad you found something interesting – come again soon!

  3. Looks great Dave. You did an excellent job of it.

    1. P.S. It'd be really nice if you disabled that rotten Word Verification. I always have so much trouble reading them. Just sayin'...

    2. Thanks Tony, sorry for the late reply. Only took me 6 months. It seems the Word Verification is necessary to cut down on spam, which I seem to be getting a lot of these days, especially on my other McgregorBrand blog. Not sure how else to control that.