Through the Garden Gate: Monday, November 9, 2009

Various forces have conspired to keep me from regularly posting a Monday look through the garden gate over the last couple of months. Today I dashed outside to capture the usual view, along with a view from the other garden gate and a lament thereupon.

The usual view is a bit less floriferous than it has been. Those with sharp eyes might notice that the rock edging has been rearranged (yes, AGAIN). Since I'd spent most of last week working in front, I set out to putter around for a bit in the back this morning and ended up spending several hours tending to one thing and another, including shifting rocks around.
Fall always puts me in the mood to make changes! I wonder what it will look like this time next year? Shoot, who am I kidding? It may look entirely different this time next week! I'm still not sure I like that rock border on the left and I really want to put flagstone stepping stones in that dirt path and plant around them. Oh, yeah, I want to take up the square pavers and put in flagstone there, too. Which would mean taking up the river rock as well.

Speaking of flagstone, since the crew was already here last week putting in the flagstone sidewalk, I decided to have them lay flagstone in the path along the south wall of the house. The path leads from the front gate to the bedroom patio, which you might remember had flagstone installed earlier this year. Here's the view from the front gate. They did a very nice job of sloping the path and working around the drainage system installed last week. (I decided AFTER they'd done the drainage that I wanted to go ahead and put flagstone there, too. I do that kind of thing way too often, according to the Head Gardener. She's right.)

And now for the lament. What's wrong with the picture below?

I doubt I need to spell it out, but I will. Yep, folks, the flagstone used for the patios doesn't match the flagstone used for the paths as it was supposed to. How no one caught on to this until the job was completed is an interesting thing to ponder. You'd think the crew would have noticed that the stones were markedly different colors and stopped work to ask their boss about it. Pedro was tied up on another job, though, and they didn't check with him. You'd think I would have noticed, too! All I can say is that on my one visit to see how it was going, I wondered about the color difference but passed it off as being due to granite dust covering the stones. Unusually for me, I didn't make frequent visits to the work site. They'd done such a splendid job on the front sidewalk that I was confident this would turn out well, too. And it did, save for the not so minor matter of the color difference.

Fortunately, my contractor is a reasonable guy and all it took was one look for him to agree that his crew had messed up and it was up to him to make it right. I ran by the stone yard today and picked out a pallet of stone that's in the same color range as the patio. Tomorrow morning the guys will be back and we'll start over. We're hoping that they can find a way to avoid having to re-do the whole path but I've reserved the right to object if I'm not happy with our efforts. I say our because I'll be paying closer attention to the process this time around. While they're working on the path tomorrow, I'll be out back planting fall annuals in one of the hayracks, continuing the never ending chore of weeding out unwanted spiderwort and reminding myself to deadhead them more diligently next season, and making frequent inspections of the stone laying process!


Rose said…
This is all going to look beautiful when it's finished, Cindy. You are so fortunate, though, that your contractor is a "reasonable guy." Glad it's them and not me having to re-do all that work:)
Compared with your garden, the rate of change here at Squirrelhaven is glacial. I admire your ability to change things up, to continually tweak & improve. I'd say it's going to look great when it's done, but who am I kidding? It's never going to be "done" in your garden. I love it.
Wow, too bad about the color mismatch. It looks like they do a good job though. I wish I had access to such good contractors!
Gail said…
Your contractor sounds like a smart man! It looks good now, but when it matches will look wonderful...I think the hardscape will remain in place, but you like to change around the plants too much to leave it static! I like that about you! gail
Anonymous said…
I'm just nuts about the look though with it meandering around. Such a nice place to relax. I hope everyone gets to come out and see it in person next summer. And it seems to have cooled the place down for those hot summers you experience. It's so very nice. The color is going to turn out nice as it ages.