Jump to content

Need some ideas
Garden ideas

  • Please log in to reply
11 replies to this topic

#1 Coffeegirl

Posted 19 November 2012 - 07:33 AM

Hi all!    We have a huge backyard and it is so very boring.   I want to spruce it up but
1). I hate gardening original.gif
2). I don't want to spend too much as we are hoping to put in a pool next year.

So here are some photos.  The previous owners have bricked off a strip up each  of the sides and around the trees.    The grass is  sick.gif   And I hate walking on it.   I think its because I grew up with very spongy green, green grass, like a carpet.

Any ideas?  It gets a lot of sun during the day.    Our front is done with drought resistant natives

Edited by Coffeegirl, 19 November 2012 - 07:33 AM.

#2 LambChop

Posted 19 November 2012 - 07:41 AM

First you need to work out where you want the pool (dug in or above ground ?) and approx how much space it will take up, then you need a spot for the trampoline, then we'll be able to see what is left.

#3 Berndt TÅ‘st

Posted 19 November 2012 - 07:42 AM

I think the grass is in bad nick because it is surrounded by trees, so heavily shaded. You could switch to paving, or try Pixie grass which grows well in shade (and doesn't need much mowing).
ETA sorry, just reread that it gets a lot of sun. Well, neverthless I think  the grass needs to be resown and if it's not fertilised, that it something you need to do a couple of times a year.
Otherwise I think some colourful grevilleas ands waratahs would look good, if you want to continue with natives?

Edited by CancerianMoon, 19 November 2012 - 07:48 AM.

#4 Flaxen

Posted 19 November 2012 - 07:42 AM

I wouldnt do much now if you are planning on putting in a pool.
Re-seed the lawn if you hate it that much. Buffalo grass is nice and drought hardy, but you need to sow it in autumn i think. You will need to fertilise it though, (in autumn as well) that lawn looks pretty starved.  
Do up a plan on paper how you would like it once the pool is in, and go from there.

#5 noi'mnot

Posted 19 November 2012 - 07:49 AM

Yeah, it's hard to say without knowing where exactly and how big the pool will be.

If you want cheap and bright and easy, you could always buy a few lovely decorative pots and fill them with bright annual flowering plants. Put them wherever you want to see them and be cheered up. If you do something like this, you can use the pots later on (once the annuals have died) wherever you want in your bigger garden scheme, and move them around at will.

#6 kpingitquiet

Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:01 AM

I have a hard time comprehending backyards without some grass so I'd probably invest in a section done with new, high-quality, shade-tolerant turf. Good for kicking a ball or running around. For the rest, I'd mark off (and consult with a pool installer on this) where the pool will likely go. Then I would think of what views I'd like from the pool. Do I want to see mostly just the natural trees around the yard? Or low textured shrubbery, or expanses of flowers and sitting areas? Will there be a pool shelter/house at all? Any new sheds? Decks? Things like that. Then I'd fill in the gaps with areas like these:

or with inspiration from this page: http://georgeweigel.net/favorite-past-gard...no-water-garden

#7 seepi

Posted 19 November 2012 - 08:23 AM

I'd cover the fences with bushes. You just need to know how sunny they are - if you have any nice sunny north facing fences I'd put roses or lemon trees along them. Or butterfly bush.

Shady fences you can put camelias.

#8 *LucyE*

Posted 19 November 2012 - 12:34 PM

If you are putting in a pool next year, I'd do very little now incase it becomes collateral damage. I'd spend the time until then working on building up your existing soil with lots of nutrients and organic matter - killing the exisisting lawn, rotary hoeing in lots of manure and planting green manure. Hoeing that in and repeating.

Those big gum trees will be sucking up lots of nutrients from the soil. Some gum tree roots produce a substance that inhibits the roots of other plants from growing. I'd talk to your local nursery with a photo and sample of those gum tree leaves and get their opinion on what will grow there.

I personally like to hide fences because I think they're ugly and I prefer the feel of a garden cocoon. I'd work out where you plan on placing the pool, then mark out where you want to have an entertaining area, where the tramp and other kids play equipment will go, where and what type of pool fence you'll have as well as any shade structures.

Do you have water tanks or any restrictions on water usage?  I like lawns but am also practical. I don't see the point of using plants in positions where they will struggle or require a lot of attention. I would have a sunken lawn in a spot that naturally collects water. That minimizes the amount of artificial watering required (if the soil below is healthy).

But, with all those gums, I think it may be easiest to go with lots of paving type surfaces and build up garden beds above the ground level (so they're almost giant pots).

#9 Coffeegirl

Posted 19 November 2012 - 01:07 PM

Thanks everyone.   We'd like the pool to go in the back Right hand corner, but we're not sure if the council will let us pull down the gums.  The pool we'd like is a basic rectangle inground (concrete),  I'd love to move our current retaining wall back from the house further and turn the end of the pool facing the house into a wet edge waterfall over a glass wall (so you could see into the pool).  But the one quote we had was  blink.gif so that may not work original.gif

The trampoline will probably be gone by then as the kids are starting to outgrow,.    I like the idea of hiding the fences and that is what we will try to do.  the back left hand side gets NO sun, but the fence on the left hand side, closer to the house gets full sun during the day/evening.      

If it helps, the photos were taken at 8am this morning and I was facing almost due East at the time.

We're looking for something cheap and cheerful as the yard will get ripped to shreds once the pool works start, but as I said, that won't be until next winter at this stage.  

#10 mitty82

Posted 19 November 2012 - 04:14 PM

Id hold off as long as possible for doing anything. Dont want to waste money on doing much when you could put it towards your pool. Ahhh wouldnt that be so nice, it is so dam hot today.

Anyway I would get rid of those gum trees in your yard. and perhaps a garden along the edge of the boundary. I wish my garden had a nice patio or entertaining area.....my backyard is dull and boring. my most exciting thing is a mango tree!!!!!!


Posted 19 November 2012 - 04:51 PM

I would build a beautiful big chook house along the back!

#12 *LucyE*

Posted 19 November 2012 - 10:22 PM

We'd like the pool to go in the back Right hand corner, but we're not sure if the council will let us pull down the gums.
Generally you're allowed to remove sick trees  wwhistle.gif

I'd love to move our current retaining wall back from the house further
I missed that it was was a retaining wall.  Does that mean the slope is towards your house?  What's the drainage like?  If it were me, I'd definitely want some sort of channel away from the house.

turn the end of the pool facing the house into a wet edge waterfall over a glass wall (so you could see into the pool). But the one quote we had was blink.gif so that may not work original.gif
My first thought, before I finished reading, was "that's going to be EXPENSIVE!".  

We're looking for something cheap and cheerful as the yard will get ripped to shreds once the pool works start, but as I said, that won't be until next winter at this stage.
Judging by the looks of the lawn, your yard is really nutrient deficient.  It will be an uphill battle to have something cheap and cheerful thrive quickly.  A better use of resources would be to just make the most of what you currently have.   Then really overhaul the yard when you've put in the pool.

To 'soften' the lawn, you could fertilize and water it more regularly.  The lush new growth is what feels soft underfoot.  We have kikuyu  grass in our front yard.  Sections of it are prickly and rough under foot.  Other sections that have had our poultry on it (sort of like a chook tractor) are soft and lush like carpet even though it has all had the same amount of water.  It's the high nitrogen manure.  Improving the grass will be faster and cheaper than most other options.

1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users


Newborn baby found in a nativity scene

Police are trying to trace a woman who abandoned a baby boy in the manger of a church nativity scene.

Life would be harder without my kids

The Humans of New York Facebook page is well known for sharing touching, real stories from one of the world's biggest cities – and it's just hit the heart of parents everywhere.

Mum dresses as Wonder Woman for last day of chemo

A Brisbane mum dressed up as a superhero to celebrate the end of her chemotherapy and created a moment her family will remember forever.

How a raisin can predict a toddler's IQ

All you need to assess a child's future intelligence is a plastic cup and a raisin, according to new research.

Former Hi-5 member's cannabis hope

Former Hi-5 star Tim Harding hopes a cannabis-derived drug will help control his daughter's epilepsy, which sees the four-year-old suffering between 50 and 100 seizures a day.

The top 5 reasons your toddler throws a tantrum

Whilst to the outside world little people may appear to have it easy, it's actually not always the case – just ask any toddler who's had their toast cut up the wrong way.

Glenn McGrath thought he'd lost his wife and baby

Australian cricket ledged Glen McGrath has spoken about the moment he thought he might lose his wife, Sara and their baby daughter, Madison.


Inside my Centrelink nightmare

Mother Bec Smith has been trying for months to access Centrelink payments. A "serious error" is preventing her.

Warnings over push for hourly childcare billing

Australia's peak childcare body has called for caution around the Turnbull government's push for childcare centres to charge parents by the hour, not by the day.

Cate Blanchett thought about adopting for years

Cate Blanchett says her recent adoption of a baby girl had nothing to do with wanting a daughter after having three sons.

Kate Walsh: 'I can't have kids'

Grey's Anatomy star Kate Walsh has revealed she is unable to have children because she has experienced early menopause.

The parasite that could boost fertility

The Tsimane women of Bolivia are often revered as among the most fertile in the world - on average having 10 children in their lifetimes -- but some are even more fertile than others.

Family may sue cousin over genetics

A Melbourne couple is suing the Royal Children's Hospital for failing to diagnose a genetic disorder in their first child - an error they allege caused them to have another child with severe disabilities.

Strange things mums have done in labour

While most women in labour focus on the upcoming birth of their baby, some women do more interesting things.

Michael Clarke reveals baby's name

When Michael Clarke said he was wrapped around the finger of his little princess, he wasn't joking.

The logistics of breastfeeding twins

Our life is more or less divided into neat four hour parcels of time and it's hard to get much of anything done in the time between feeds.

How to stop people ruining Christmas

We can make a conscious effort about how we react to those curly Christmas day scenarios that can send us up the wall, or should we say chimney.

Lots of formula offers for desperate mum

The mum who was down to her last three tins of baby formula said she had received hundreds of calls and offers to send her formula.

Surviving breast cancer while pregnant

It was last thing Rebecca O'Donnell expected at 30 weeks' pregnant. One morning, while putting on her bra, she felt a pea-sized lump in her right breast.

Cot sheet brands for the nursery

With so many awesome cot sheet options these days, we thought we'd put together a list of go-to brands for you to seek out for your baby's bed.


What's hot on EB

How I survived breast cancer while pregnant

It was last thing Rebecca O'Donnell expected at 30 weeks' pregnant. One morning, while putting on her bra, she felt a pea-sized lump in her right breast.

Grieving father's letter to Bataclan terrorists: "...this little boy will threaten you by being happy and free"

A grieving father whose wife was killed in the attacks on the Bataclan Theatre last weekend has written an open letter to her killers.

5 challenges of motherhood - and how to see them differently

Despite the smiles, the sloppy kisses and the pure magic children bring to our lives, it's hard to deny that motherhood can be tough.

4 challenges of being a new dad - and how to face them

Becoming a parent is challenging – and that applies to both mums and dads.

My battle against antenatal and postnatal depression

I was five months pregnant when I realised I needed help.

Children swapped at birth will not be returned to biological parents

A boy and girl accidentally swapped on the day they were born will stay with the families who have raised them, a South African court has ruled.

A quarter of men believe they get 'man periods'

A British study has revealed one in four men believe they have a monthly cycle.

Baby deposit

How much do you need to save for a 'baby deposit'?

It's fairly straightforward to calculate a house deposit, but how much money do you need to save up for a baby?

Dad's beautiful note to his wife, a nurse

To anyone else it might just look like a picture of a mum having a nap with her toddler.

'I was a complete schmuck': Mike Baird opens up about his wife's postnatal depression

When his wife Kerryn was not well following the birth of their daughter, NSW Premier Mike Baird buried himself in his work.

Mum's desperate plea as whooping cough alert issued

A desperate mother has shared a heart-breaking video of her baby struggling to cope with a coughing fit caused by pertussis.

Coffee could help you live longer

New US research found people who report drinking three to five cups of coffee a day are less likely to die prematurely from heart disease, suicide, diabetes or Parkinson's disease.

The joy and dread of playdates

To live vicariously through your child is to rediscover anxieties you thought dead and buried.

Sick baby could die without scarce special formula, mum says

Lizzie Cann is down to her last three tins of a special formula in short supply.

Adorable toddler's strop foiled by squeaky shoes

We're probably all familiar with the pouty bottom lip and tightly crossed arms of a tot mid-strop.

More sex during World Cup created more baby boys

More sex during South Africa's World Cup meant a disproportionately high number of boys were born nine months later, a new study has found.

Win one of two ABC Shop prize packs in time for Christmas

What a boon it would be to have your toddler's Christmas gifts covered this year. We have two awesome ABC Shop prize packs to give away to two lucky winners.

Do fitness challenges really work?

Fitness challenges aren't new. There's Michelle Bridges 12WBT and a bunch of other programs if you really want to lose weight.

What are pregnant women Googling?

Pregnancy is a huge change for any woman, so it's natural we'll have questions - and turn to Google to ask them.



Can't decide?

Check out the Essential Baby Names section for some inspiration

Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.