Sunday, January 3, 2010

Making the best out of a tiny backyard

We have a tiny backyard. Really tiny. It's probably more of a courtyard really. I used to whinge about it. But now we have made it quite functional. Veggies, a trampoline, a sandpit and even chooks! We have maximized the space by building retaining walls all the way around the fences and planting the veggies and fruit in there-the drainage is awesome. We've also planted in wine barrels around the place. The ground is our next project, at the moment it is crushed rock that is covered in some recycled tennis court grass in places. We are getting REAL grass this year at the beginning of spring. I know it's a permaculture no no but it will be watered from our washing machine and it really is a small patch. We followed the advice of a friend who knows his permaculture-plant what you want, see what lives and what dies and you'll have a better idea of what to plant next year or what to fix. I like this advice :)

This photo was taken from inside the back window. There is the fence. That's the clothesline which gets the washing dry surprisingly fast. In the bottom right you can see the rabbit hutch and the chook house. The gate in the right hand corner goes to dead space around the house. It's about a meter wide and runs in an L shape around the outside of our place-it will be the chook's run when they get a little bigger.

Here are some close ups of the garden beds that run along that wall.The first one is taken from against the gate. Flowers, basil, celery, raspberries and broccoli to name a few. The trampoline provides a bit of shade so it's a good spot for delicate plants.

This photo is taken from inside the sliding door on the other part of the yard. The kids run hot and cold with playing with the cubby house but it's a favorite to share with friends

And this picture is taken from against the roller door into the garage to give you an idea of the longest part of the yard.

A close up of the sandpit that Luke is standing in in the previous photo.

A view from the sandpit

Some closer shots of the wine barrels. and garden behind. This spot gets the best sun and is going a little crazy. Cucumbers, cantaloupe, strawberries, blueberries, a mini peach tree and a sunflower to name a bit of what's going on here. Herbs are planted in the gaps around the place.

The lemon tree barrel. Or the pee barrel lol.

This barrel has Harper's placenta planted in it. We chucked some random seedlings and seeds in there while we wait for bare rooted season to get a mini apple. But it has all gone crazy! I'm not sure if the mint will kill the zucchini or vice versa.

Tannah doing her favorite thing. Bouncing!

Willow helping pick the rainbow silverbeet for dinnerPhotobucket

So that's our backyard-I hope it has inspired you to make the best out of your small space if you have one or be grateful for a huge space if that's what you have!
Looking forward to feeling some real grass between my toes next year...and maybe putting in a bench seat somewhere.....


Juniper said...

Wow, Shae, very very impressive! I feel guilty, I have heaps of space, but am such a black thumb I don't grow veggies which I should!

Fantastic, looks fab!

katepickle said...

Looks so good! Every time I come over I marvel at how lush and green and prosperous it looks!

anastasia_wolf said...

It's really inspiring what you have grown in such a small space!

Kylie said...

This is so inspiring - thans for sharing. We have just moved to Brisbane and have he smallest backyard we have ever had. Although I think that yours is slightly tighter:(
My problem is th yard has too much shade - not from our trees from the neighbours.

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