From sandpit to a beautiful garden

by Katrina - The Organised Housewife

Over the past few weeks I have been spending some time out in the garden, it has been very neglected and while it was a little cooler I wanted to give it some TLC. Each Thursday over the coming weeks I will share with you the different projects I have completed in my backyard.

POSTS FROM THIS SERIES:

From sandpit to a beautiful garden
Our trampoline garden
Our new Vegetables Garden
Growing seedlings & How to store and organise seeds
Organising kids pool toys
Creating a potting bench and organising my gardening tools

When we moved into our home we made the kids a sandpit.  I remember playing with my brothers in our sandpit throughout my childhood and it was something that I wanted my kids to enjoy too…. every child needs a sandpit.  We made this pit ourselves, we dug out the area, surrounded it with painted treated sleepers that matched our garden edging, laid weedmat and filled with soil suggested by our local landscape supplier. My kids have had loads of fun playing in the sandpit, but over the past year they have stopped playing in it and they also stopped using their swing set.

My mum was a huge Bromeliad collector, she had hundreds, if not thousands of Bromeliads in her collection, all very different to each other.  Mum passed away last year leaving her beloved ‘Broms’ as she used to call them behind.  I really wanted to take a few and create a garden in memory of her in my backyard.  I picked the Bromeliads that appealed to my eye (mostly the ones that had shades of pink, cause I love pink) and I kept them in the kids sandpit.  To be honest they have been in this sandpit for about a year, in the beginning I cared for them each day, but slowly they were getting a little neglected and dry.

So I pulled out my green thumb and changed this drab area into a gorgeous tropical garden.  I was able to sell the swing set on Gumtree!!  I enlisted the help of my brother to help me with the heavy duty jobs.  He pulled up the edges of the sandpit, dug out the grass and put in the garden edging.  I could of chosen something fancy, but I wanted to keep the costs low.  I used a black (to match the trim of the house) 150mm plastic edging from Bunnings, it was flexible so followed the shape of the edging I wanted really well.

I wanted a curved bed so I could arrange the plants in a particular order and in particular give emphasis to a gorgeous Red Frangipani tree that mum gave me many years ago.  I have taken cuttings from the original plant and will plant the Frangipani when it has matured slightly into this new garden bed.

We used the grass we had to fill in part of the sandpit to make a rounded edge.  Bromeliads love sand so we were able to use it in the garden bed.

I arranged the bromeliads in the new garden bed and left in them standing for a fortnight to make sure they could tolerate the small bit of sun that they will get in the afternoon.  If I found some burned slightly I could move them before I planted them.  Most of them were fine.

As we were planting the Broms I set up a little potting station and removed all the dead foliage and pups, planting the pups into pots to mature.  This ‘potting station’ made me realise I need something a little more permanent, can’t wait to show you what I created in the following weeks of this series.

The team at About the Garden heard about my upcoming ‘outdoor’ projects and kindly shared some gardening tips with me along with which products are best to be used.  Before planting I mixed some Searles Garden Soil Mix* into the sand.  As I was planting the Bromeliads I put some Searles Cymbidium & Bromeliad Specialty Mix* around the plant as this mix has a special release fertiliser specially formulated for Bromeliads. I learnt very early on that they prefer a special mix, sadly a few I planted last year with potting mix didn’t survive.  After planting all the broms I topped the garden bed up with Searles Pine Bark Mulch*.  Usually people buy the mulch by the truck load and use a wheel barrow to distrubute around the garden.  We used 7 bags in this garden and found it so much easier pouring the bag of mulch into the garden (we don’t own a wheel barrow, no room for one).

I am loving how beautiful this garden looks! A beautiful memory for my mum x

Follow the About the Garden Facebook page for simple garden tips and advise for you and the kids.  I saw on their page recently how to remove bindii prickles from the lawn, now wouldn’t that be nice!

* I received Searles products for editorial consideration, run in accordance with my disclosure policy.

 

 

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26 comments

Lucy @ Bake Play Smile October 10, 2013 - 7:27 AM

Wow that looks great! What a backyard blitz!

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Katrina October 10, 2013 - 2:26 PM

It’s looking so good now!

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Jo Matheson October 10, 2013 - 7:28 AM

looks lovely – what a beautiful memory garden

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Katrina October 10, 2013 - 2:26 PM

It truly is Jo, so lovely to look at and think of Mum

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Kim Hutson October 10, 2013 - 7:32 AM

Awesome work your mum would be so pleased

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Katrina October 10, 2013 - 2:27 PM

She would Kim, I’m sure she would love what I have done…. I have made another garden too, which is really cool, can’t wait to share it with you next week!

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KezUnprepared October 10, 2013 - 8:08 AM

I think I’m going to like this series! Thanks for sharing 🙂

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Katrina October 10, 2013 - 2:28 PM

It’s been lovely spending time outside in the garden, I have quite a bit to share!!

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Naomi Tinning October 10, 2013 - 9:29 AM

This is great. I’ve been trying to find inspiration to get out and make garden beds in my own garden. We moved in to our new place back in March and I have yet to do any landscaping. I’ll have to remember to take photos to post on my own blog. Love the plant choices you have made.

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Katrina October 10, 2013 - 2:29 PM

Please do I would love to see what you have done to your Garden, I don’t consider myself a green thumb, but I do like to give it a go.

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Lauren - Gold Coast Mum.com October 10, 2013 - 12:19 PM

Loooking great! Well done! 🙂

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Katrina October 10, 2013 - 2:29 PM

Thank you Lauren, it’s a beautiful little corner of the backyard.

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AlyceB October 10, 2013 - 1:31 PM

That’s beautiful Katrina! Can’t wait to see what else you’ve done!

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Katrina October 10, 2013 - 2:29 PM

I’ve done quite a bit Alyce, look forward to sharing it with you : )

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Yvonne October 10, 2013 - 2:56 PM

It looks amazing, I too have discovered broms as my friend has so many. They truly make a garden look great. Your mum would be proud and it is a nice reminder of her everytime you see them.

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AbouttheGarden October 10, 2013 - 7:25 PM

Oh WOW Kat, it turned out beautifully and that large bromeliad is just gorgeous!

I’m so thrilled we could work with you to create a stunning backyard garden and a beautiful way to remember your Mum and the bromeliads she loved. I hope your kicking back with a glass of wine & just enjoying the garden you created……. that’s the best part 😉

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Katrina October 10, 2013 - 8:55 PM

I ABSOLUTELY love this new corner of the garden, I still have a little bit more work to do before I can sit back, but I am really enjoying just pottering around. Thank you so much for working with me on this project!!

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miss Prudence October 10, 2013 - 7:49 PM

what a difference and a garden dedicated to your mum –

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Katrina October 10, 2013 - 8:56 PM

it’s a very special garden, and ‘if’ we ever move I’ll put in the contract that I get to take the Broms with me

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sonia October 11, 2013 - 5:18 AM

a Job well done

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Lisa Warren October 11, 2013 - 11:19 AM

Just beautiful Kat! A beautiful garden for your mum…and exactly what that corner of your home was needing I think.

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Katrina October 11, 2013 - 1:22 PM

I agree Lisa, I had always imagined one day a big fern in the corner, but I really love how the bromeliads look and the red frangipani that I will plant when it has matured more will look gorgeous.

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Chloe September 7, 2015 - 1:09 PM

Kat, how was it filling in their sandpit? I am deep in sandpit territory and can’t imagine the time that will inevitably come where ours is no longer used… I think I will be sad.

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Yvonne September 7, 2015 - 10:01 PM

Looks fab ,kids do outgrow them. I love the colour. I also managed to get a brom from my mum’s garden, she passed away 20 years ago. Her house was sold, demolished and redeveloped. Before the building started we managed to get some broms and some bricks of the house my dad had built. I since have discovered bromeliads as my friend has so many different ones. They are easy to grow, and you can get plenty of pups from them. I just use the pinebark mix that we have in the garden. Be careful if you use fresh pinebark as some are treated and will kill the plants.

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Yvonne September 7, 2015 - 10:01 PM

Looks fab ,kids do outgrow them. I love the colour. I also managed to get a brom from my mum’s garden, she passed away 20 years ago. Her house was sold, demolished and redeveloped. Before the building started we managed to get some broms and some bricks of the house my dad had built. I since have discovered bromeliads as my friend has so many different ones. They are easy to grow, and you can get plenty of pups from them. I just use the pinebark mix that we have in the garden. Be careful if you use fresh pinebark as some are treated and will kill the plants.

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Katrina - The Organised Housewife September 8, 2015 - 7:44 AM

I love the broms, like you say so many varieties, my mum used to go on bus trips and came back with so many. I just need to find the time to separate the pups and repot them 🙂

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