Sunday, January 16, 2011

A Slow Journey

Over the last couple of months I have been out and about seeing what I can find to help with the progress of the Gum Tree Garden Studio at Pinelands.  Pinelands is 3 kilometres north of Crows Nest Qld. and about 40 minutes drive from Toowoomba where I live.

The early morning shadows on the far side of the creek
mark the boundaries of the Gum Tree Garden Studio
It is a very slow process, but I think I may have enough for an out house and a 3m x 3 metre shed.  I can't wait to get a few comforts out there.  It will allow me to start working on the fences and regeneration projects, such as planting Koala friendly trees and natives along the creek banks.

Many generous Freecycle members have provided all sorts of materials to recycle at the Gum Tree Garden Studio.  Just before Xmas a  member donated these old broken pavers that will form part of an interesting crazy path, that will eventually meander down to the creek.  For now they are in my garden waiting to be transferred to the block.......and trying to look as though they belong in their temporary home.

After watching a program on Better Homes and Gardens I decided that a shed with a recycled brick floor would be the easiest way to go.  I have the option of fixing the shed with long pegs that are designed for temporary garden sheds or bolting it to cement stumps set at ground level.   Perhaps some quick set cement will do the job.  Either option should be something I could manage on my own in my old age. 

Freecyclers donated all sorts of bricks and pavers.  Including these pavers that hopefully will be used in a similar way when transferred to Pinelands.  I might need a few more to finish the look, but it works well enough as it is.

I am hoping there will be enough bricks for the 3 x 3 shed.  I think 36 bricks are needed for a square metre.  I'll have to measure them later.  It took hours to load and unload the various donations of  bricks and many still need to be taken on the 40 minute drive to the block at Pinelands.

The last load was donated by Yvette....the lady who fills bags with toiletry items for the homeless.......It was a huge pile of bricks and rather than load and reload later I took them out  to the block as soon as I picked them up.  It took one and half hours to load and  three hours to unload.  The trailer was so heavy that the little four cylinder Magna  couldn't pull the trailer up into the blocks driveway.  So I loaded my little trolley and carted them in 8 bricks at a time.

I must admit that I spent some of that time sitting on a log drinking copious cups of coffee and just enjoying the view.  More time was spent wandering around seeking native plants that may have struggled through the African Love grass after the rain we had over the weeks leading up to Xmas.

I managed to find some lovely little gems.  I don't know the names of all of them and will have a look at Trish Gardner's blog "Toowoomba Plants" to see if I can identify them. Some will be weeds, but I have learnt that many native weeds are edible.  So, there could be some interesting finds.

Wandering Jew

Field Lily

But that's not all that's been gathered for the project.  The block is elevated and prone to erosion, so I need to build some swales and a pond to catch water. This time last year I collected a huge piece of black  plastic from the Esk area, and water bed bladders from a local Freecycler ready for the large pond.

20 metres of black plastic folded in four
- does have some holes but I can work around them

Water bed bladder to use as Pond lining

I  also picked up several trailer loads of landscaping rocks for the edge of the pond. All donated by a generous freecycler.

landscaping rocks waiting to be transferred to Pinelands

Some were too heavy to lift so I rolled them into a cane clothes basket before lifting them
Before any of this can be put into motion I will need to carpet my drive way ( old carpet makes an excellent weed mat) so I can get into the block.  Some will be used as weed mat on the paths as well.

..... and use the brush cutter on the African Love grass so I can start cutting the paths, levelling the shed sites and digging the pond.

Last visit to the Pinelands block I decided to take some of the wooden lids (mentioned in a previous post), back home with me to act as a wind/rain break on the chook house. When I lifted some lids off the pile I found this beautiful little resident.

I search the images on the web but still can't be sure what he is.  Let me know if you recognise him.

No comments:

Post a Comment