The skip I hired has gone. It went three days ago. By then it was well-filled. All the minor shrubbery and undergrowth in my back garden has been cut away - on both sides - leaving just a few big items (well trimmed or lopped). Some stumps remain to to be winched out, and all the bare ground will need to be rotavated in order to loosen a lot of roots, then raked until clear and well-broken-down. Then I will seed the earth and extend my lawn to the fence on the left (south) side, and probably lawn the right (north) side too, even though it's just a strip. The rockery and the rear hedge both need a trim. The chalet (which is useful) needs repainting. The greenhouse (which I don't use) will be taken down and its base used for something else. The patio close to the house, and the hard pathways, all need blasting with high-pressure water.
My back garden now looks like this (and Andrew my mower man gave the grass a cut only yesterday, its final cut of the year, so it's now short and striped as well):
Not long ago, before the work Kevin and myself put in, it looked something like this (actually an April shot), only a little more dense after a summer's unchecked growth:
Here are some more shots to show what has been achieved in a few days of hard slog:
So. It's all neat now. But plenty left to do in the way of de-rooting the bare ground and turning over the soil. I've got a week in South Wales coming up, and then I will make it my daily habit to do an hour's work most days. Until the hard frosts come, anyway. Having done this much, it would be a shame to let it all unravel.
The skip was genuinely full:
I hire a green bin that the Council empty for me every fortnight throughout the year. That will be enough for everyday maintenance from now on, although that mass of roots, a lot of it ivy, that still has to come out - and those stumps - will surely need to go in the back of Fiona and be taken to the tip, as a special trip. Once I'm home again, I must get straight on with ground rotavation and clearance.
The skip shot shows that I temporarily parked my caravan on my front lawn. It's made me think it would be a good idea to extend the tarmacked area so that this would become its regular position while I'm at home. I'd then have all the original driveway back, and plenty of space not only for Fiona but another car too - a visitor's say. It's a longer-term thought to keep in mind.