When we moved over a year ago we discovered a pond hidden in our garden amoung the pebbles and plants. We had been so taken with the house we hadn’t noticed it!
At that stage we had moved house with a 9 month old, who was desperately wanting to walk and had been crawling for 2 months. We knew it had to go for our own peace of mind. We loved the idea of a pond, but not the danger it might provide. We also wanted the pebble area transformed into grass to provide Toddler H with as much grass as possible. In reality we’d have loved a garden double the size, but for the area, it wasn’t to be. We had also been looking for well over a year, and this house was the size we were looking for, had a garden that wasn’t overlooked and didn’t have any houses behind. We absolutely love our home and don’t anticipate moving – I seriously can’t face it without getting movers to pack and so EVERYTHING. If we do eventually it’ll have to have a double garage and garden that’s double the size as they were our compromises.
Back to the garden. Last year hubby set about removing the pond, the first step in our plans for the garden. Baby/toddler safety was our priority. Here are a few photos…
Our plans for stage 1 pond removal:
- The pond is there behind those reeds, you can just see the black of the water. So that has to go!
- The slabs were also very raised compared to the pebble area and the grass and some a bit wobbly, not great for a toddler!
- We also wanted to remove that drop which was only 4 inches, but my ideal for a toddler running towards to back door. So we planned to slope the grass gently down to the patio which runs the width of the house
- We figured the more grass the better so wanted to make all of this raised area grass
So quite a lot of work, a long term project, really.
Starting the work:
On emptying the pond, we discovered a fish that had been living there in the reeds for months without us having a clue! He was rehomed to my mother-in-law’s garden pond.
Since removing the pond we frequently find frogs hopping around the garden. I guess our neighbours also have ponds and they used to hop between each of the gardens?
Once the pond liner was removed, it was a case of filling in the hole. We wanted to level off the drop in grass to patio level so it was more of a smooth gentle slope and to avoid Toddler H tripping on the edge that ran the whole width of the garden. That meant filling the pond was mostly a case of redistributing the soil that was there and making it slope gently.
Hubby levelled the ground and then added some top soil, again levelling it so that the grass would be at the right height to match in with the remaining lawn. This wasn’t the smallest task as it’s quite a big area.
Hubby then had a trip to the local turf place, it’s not a garden centre, just a man who has fields he grows grass on and then rolls up and sells. It’s much better quality than the stuff that’s been sat in B&Q as he cuts it to order, then it arrives straight to our door a couple of hours later!
Since laying the turf it’s been watered and grass seeded a couple of times, but now almost a year on in blends in beautifully, and actually is nicer than the rest of the lawn.
There is such a gentle slope down now too, which is much safer too.
Stage two of the garden makeover included building a new walk around the patio where the biggest drop is, and then the final stage, relevelling the patio so Toddler H doesn’t trip over as much and her trike doesn’t tip! We’re currently doing this project as we speak, it must be finished before baby arrives! So, more on that in a month!