Now this is a big project I've been putting off for a couple of years but the old sleeper steps have rotted and were becoming dangerous so its time to tackle the job. This is what the old steps looked like
... and then a trailer load of AA grade old railway sleepers
Constructing Step 1
Constructing Step 3
Now Step 4
And Step 5
And finally, the full-width Top Step
The brick paver path leading to the front steps was very uneven and a bit of a tripping hazard as the spotted gum had grown and it would be better if the bottom step was the same riser height as all the others so a Coldstream topping path was laid on top of the bricks. The extra railway sleeper next the driveway should keep it all under control. Looks pretty good!
The completed new steps
But what about those other front steps on the right? A job for another time - perhaps a long curved ramp instead?
Karyn picked these two beautiful azalea's up from the local supermarket and there's a perfect home for them under the tall fern by the other azaleas.
Most of the plants that we put in to the Mothers garden in May last year are doing really well but, unfortunately, one of the grevillias the didn't survive the dry autumn so we've put in a replacement today. It's a different variety but that won't matter.
Over near the lime tree and hebe, we've also planted some more hellebores - two from pots and a few self-sown volunteers from the path and driveway. It's clear from the other garden bed that hellebores do very well here.
We've planted a number of native hibiscus's in the front garden over the years and they've grown quickly and produced beautiful purple flowers. But they haven't lasted long and the last one turned up its toes during the very dry autumn/winter this year. It was next to the one we had (unsuccessfully) transplanted a couple of years ago.
The sun is out, bulbs are flowering, the blossum is starting to appear and the River Wattles are still amazing - what a beautiful day to be in Bickleigh Vale!
With the heavy weekend rain, Abbotsley's creek is bubbling brightly again.
The land that is Abbotsley today, along with what is Sarn today, was subdivided in 1979 off two larger blocks - lot 26 which was Edna Walling's 'Sonning' and lot 3 as you can see in the subdivision drawings below.
Next to Abbotsley's gate is a short section of post and rail fence that has been lying on its side and nearly buried in ivy for many years - long before we came here in 2011. So today, during the village working bee, we decided it was time to see if we could lift and support the old fence without it completely falling apart. Success - a little bit of history reclaimed!
Chris and Karyn, Abbotsley homeowners since December 2010