|Michele leveling the dirt|
On October 5 when the weather cooled a bit, John and I brought in 6 tons of fill dirt to raise the level of yard just off our patio steps, and replace the outdoor carpet I had used there for years to keep down the dust. Tree roots were growing all across the area and we were tripping over them at alarming rates. We couldn't afford to cut the roots and risk killing the tree, so we just filled over them, then laid St Augustine sod over that. This gave us a chance to raise and level the area, too, after nearly 30 years of it being sloped and uneven. All good. Backbreaking labor, though.
Naylors, our local plant nursery/hardware store, sells fill dirt (a sand/clay mix they call "sandy loam") for $13 a scoop. 1 scoop fits in the back of John's truck and weighs about 1 ton. We got 7 of those. Trip to store, drive home, shovel it out. Another trip to store, I spread the dirt while John goes for another load, then another, then another. That took 1 day. We tamped it down and let that settle a week while we recovered. The next weekend, John picks up 1/2 pallet of St Augustine grass sod, we arrange the rectangles in tight alignment, then he goes for the other 1/2 pallet, same thing. More hard labor, all in one day.
|Our first 1/2 pallet of sod, in John's trusty Toyota|
Costs including tax:
Fill dirt: $13 x 7 = $99
1 pallet Sod: $176
Not bad at all. If we had hired the work professionally done, it would have been more like $750, so we, in effect, made $475 doing the labor ourselves. Not a bad income but I would NOT want to lay sod for a living, no matter how well it paid! If I ever do it again, I plan on having a big party, buying all the food, and have each guest lay just a few dozen pieces. But maybe my friends are too smart to fall for that one. A few would do all the work, the others would cheer and jeer.
|6 weeks later, looks like we have a lawn!|
|Lucky Lucy rolling in "her" grass|
Despite that, I'm feeling somewhat victorious about our sod project today, which is, in effect, like another birthday present. All is well in my world today.
Upwards and onward!