Friday, August 20, 2010

Yard Re-Grading Project

Jessi and I kicked off our next big project last week. We are going to complete re-grade both our front and back yards. We talked about it back in May, and the time has come to go for it. We've done all the research, figured out all the expenses, and lined up all our tools. The timing has never been great because we've been pretty busy this summer, but Jessi has half a month free, and that's the best opportunity we're going to get.

Cutting the lawn super short
Why are we doing this? Currently the slope of both yards run towards the house. This means that when it rains water goes under the house, instead of away from it. This is not good. The goal of this project is to change the slope of both yards so water runs away from the house. It's not really a cosmetic fix, but a need to keep the property it the best condition possible.

Here's the plan:

  1. Cut the grass as low as it will go. We've been neglecting it all summer and it's responded exactly as planned. This should only take 2 hours.
  2. Rototill the yards. This is actually a two step process, and will take the longest. A friend from church is letting us borrow his rototiller.
    1. We'll do a top level first pass only going down a couple inches. That will break up the crusty dirt on top. This will probably take around 8 hours.
    2. We'll do another deep pass going down somewhere between 5-8 inches. This will take longer, possibly 24-30 hours of work.
  3. Level the land. We're going to be able to rent a tractor from a near by rental and use that to do the heavy lifting of moving the dirt. The goal, again, is to change the slope of both yards. Hopefully this only takes a full Saturday. I have very limited experience and will have to ask my dad for tips to making it go faster.
  4. If needed (I can't tell until we get there), we might need to add a couple truck loads of dirt to build up the side near the house. I'm not sure how long this will take. It'll probably take 4 hours worth of spreading per truckload.
  5. Spread new grass seed and water. A couple hours for spreading and intermittent watering. Hopefully it'll be strong enough by the time fall gets here.
With Jessi's help this project shouldn't be too much of a bear. My plan is to work hard for HP in the morning so I can get out between 3-4pm and get a couple good hours of work in. Looking at my calendar, September 11th is my first free weekend so the tractor work might have to wait until then.

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