One of the side effects of being a new gardener, and getting old according to my daughter, is that I tend to get drawn to all the gardening programmes on TV. Monty and Alan are my new best friends. Not literally obviously as they don’t pop in for a cup of tea and natter, but I have got them sky plussed to watch when the kids are out to save them moaning. Alan ( Titchmarsh) has a programme on at the moment called Love Your Garden. Its write up says “he will be travelling the nation to see Britain’s most beautiful domestic gardens with ways for us to recreate some of the looks ourselves with minim fuss”. Two programmes in and I am feeling rather despondent with my postage stamp of a garden as the gardens he has visited although lovely are at least 4 or 5 times the size of mine. I did though have a go and add a twist at one of the tips he talked us through, pebbled paving.
In Alan’s demonstration they used pebbles as they were after a country garden look. Not having pebbles to hand or going for a country garden look I dug out some old marbles and glass pebbles that were collecting dust in the ‘one day might be useful’ box under the sink. I figured they might brighten up my rather dull, shaded and dingy looking patio.
What I used.
- Plant pot saucers – I used two different sizes
- Soil – they used sand mixed with a little water to make like silt.
- Glass pebbles and marbles – they used pebbles
- Quick drying cement
How I did it.
I put a layer of soil in the bottom of each saucer and then added my design of glass pebbles and marbles. If any of the pebbles, glass pebbles etc that you are using have an ugly and a prettier side make sure the ugly side is facing you. You working in reverse so the pretty side has to face down in the soil (or silt if you have raided the kids sand pit).
I made up as many as I could as I wasn’t too sure how far the quick drying cement would go. I knew if there was some cement left over I would be against the clock to put more soil and marbles into another saucer before the cement went hard. Once happy with the designs I mixed up the quick drying cement and poured into the saucers to the top of the saucer and smoothed off.
Wait 10 minutes (or whatever is said on your quick drying cement) and then gently lift them out. Turn them over and give them a good brush off and voila your own little round slab.
Not bad for a first attempt though when I make some more I will use sand as the soil although worked didn’t give an even flat top and harder to brush off. I will stick with glass pebbles and marbles as they do catch the light and look different throughout the day.