Was checking out @Jason's blog post of top 10 garden makeovers & was motivated to add our story. BTW, I think some of Jason's picks (e.g. @maknilsin) were renos (major rework) rather than makeovers (cosmetic/low rework) but that's just my opinion; regardless, they were inspiring & a great read. Hope this inspires others like @mydreams--of course the scale can be varied to suit the space. We (my wife & I) have talked about making some planter boxes (I made some for my 80+ Mum last year to make her garden easier to manage) so I know if she sees the ones with the deck cladding, I'll be getting some directions promptly altho she is becoming adept at using various power tools (drop saw, table saw), hammer, cordless drill etc & successfully built a book case using laminated boards & threaded rod but that's another post...
Like a lot of ppl, we have a basic/bland yard. 600m2 block with road frontage on 3 sides (front & LHS facing house are entry/part of cul-de-sac; RHS road is access to estate). As you will see in the photos, we had done some tinkering--painted inside of treated pine fence, small deck & garden beds--while I was procrastinating. We started the reno in April when my wife pushed me to just jump in. Here's where we started...with our plan & the existing yard: right side is approx 14m, back fence is approx 25m
Then came the earthworks to get the levels for the boardwalk & decks--approx $800 for 1 day of a guy with mini-excavator & bobcat. And, yes, that's red clay you can see. Dry most of the time we were working (April-Aug in BrisVegas) but added 2cm to the boots when walked on when wet
Concrete pad for garden shed was outsourced--approx $1100. Conscripted (adult) children to spread mulch, erect garden shed, help build boardwalk...don't have a complete figure but $350 for 5m3 cypress mulch, $700+ for boardwalk timber (150x25mm plank tops, 800mm wide), $1100+ for semi-advanced plants
Back deck construction... 4.5mx2.1m (WxD) approx $700 for materials
Firepit with pizza & drinks to enjoy our work:
Then about a month later came the side deck--I was finding the construction techniques a bit overwhelming (400mm fall between house & fence) so more procrastination but we got there & here's the story in pics
Approx $1500 for timber, hardware, & nail gun hire.
A little more planting still to do around the water tank... but we've more than doubled the al fresco space so it's gone from being a holding space for BBQ & table to relaxationville! Side deck yet to be tested but we'll be having the in-laws over for dinner in a couple of weeks. Cheers
Brilliant result @pete_brig, many thanks for sharing. I'm sure your work will inspire other Workshop community members.
Let me also extend a very warm welcome to the community. Please post whenever you need a hand or have something to share. We have loads of helpful and experienced members who are always happy to assist.
Looking forward to your next post.
@pete_brig What an amazing transformation! Surely a much better entertainment area, much more welcoming. The problem with pictures like yours and this site, is that it makes me want to get outside and do some work. I rent though, surely the owner won't mind some timber work here and there! Perhaps a little cabana?
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@pete_brig - looks amazing! Fantastic work by the way, I still have fever dreams about clearing my backyard and doing the deck and your space is fair bit bigger than mine so god only knows how you managed that.
If u haven't started yr backyard reno, just jump on in--after careful consideration 😀
Seriously, it's not as difficult as it seems. Just need to work out th levels & footings--I "cheated"/simplified it by putting H4 timber straight onto th ground. I figured that would outlast our time here. I left space underneath for ventilation & drainage but made a few other mistakes but not the end of th world. Happy to chat if u want more details. Cheers, Peter
Here's an update with some photos. Looking along back fence:
Looking along side past th tank to back fence
Looking thru th side deck