|Craig removes sod and starts digging out the slope|
|The first layer is set on a ditch filled with gravel.|
I rode my bike to Mother Earth Gardens to buy something to plant in the wall, and settled on a creeping veronica called 'Waterperry blue' (you may think that's a typo, and I would agree with you that 'waterberry' makes more sense, but it's spelled with a 'p' on the tag). Besides the pretty sky-blue flowers in the picture on the tag, and its creeping habit, and the notation that it's a good rock garden plant, and its tolerance for part shade, I was sold on the care instructions: "Thrives in nearly any soil and requires little attention." It came in a pack of six small plants, just right for placing here and there in the wall.
|It's getting there|
Yesterday we had gone to Klier's garden center on Nicollet and 59th to get some class 5 gravel for the wall's base. Klier's has gravel in bulk, and we put a tarp in the back of the car (a Honda Fit, which is a hatchback) and brought a couple of shovels. Just when we got there, it started to pour. The wet gravel was pretty heavy and dense (class 5 is a limestone gravel with the crushed dust included, which makes it pack down to a firm base while still providing drainage, but it also makes it a lot like cement when wet), so we soon decided that we had enough.
|Craig sweeps up|
For stones, we had decided to use the broken chunks of sidewalk that Craig has been removing from the backyard. That wasn't our original plan; we were going to have all the sidewalk chunks hauled away and then at some point in the future buy nice limestone rocks to make a wall. Then we had to admit that we're not as rich as we sometimes think we are, and, besides, there's something appealing about recycling the sidewalk on property. Also, a polite note from the city inspector persuaded us that it was time to do something with that pile of concrete by the alley.
So, we built a wall. Our original plan was to build one on both sides of the steps, but we're kind of rethinking that right now. We'll see how we feel about that next weekend.
|A lady's mantle (Alchemilla mollis) accents the corner|