My bright white porch and courtyard makeover!

in DIY, gardening, my home, outdoor  3 comments
Oct 26 2009
Meet Sir Lancelot, my giant garden snail

Meet Sir Lancelot, my giant garden snail

(Ironic, since I freaked out about our recent snail invasion!)

I shared before how this place was a revolting explosion of just the one paint pot (peachy cream) when we moved in, so I retaliated with superwhites, blues, wines and yellows…

The courtyard gets some love

It was high time to attack the courtyard/porch area. The porch was ALSO painted this peachy cream… and I hated it. Wanted to move away from the poorly designed Mediterranean feel. (After all, what could be worse than a dry-ish feel to an already dry/arid suburb of Melbourne?)

Our side courtyard. Photo taken our first day at this house.

Our side courtyard. Photo taken our first day at this house.

The starting point. The gardens look better than before, but the apricot cream had to go.

The starting point. The gardens look better than before, but the apricot cream had to go.

After waiting a year, the in laws finally made a trip down to Melbourne armed with their paintbrushes and paint tunics. While the MIL attacked more gardening, my FIL and I painted. So a fortnight later, I have a new bright white porch! :) It makes the laserlight cleaner and whiter somehow… even though we didn’t clean or hose it (the translucent hard plastic roofing for the porch).

Roger, my father in law painting the first coat of white.

Roger, my father in law painting the first coat of white.

My little Hannah keeping Granddad company and being a good sport wiping down the other reachable beams.

After a fortnight:

My "new" porch.

My “new” porch.

This is what it looks like now, after a solid week of white paint, neck craning and tired upper arms.

The apricot cream is now white!

The apricot cream is now white!

So nice to sit outside now and eat and work… the white of the porch really sets off the white blossoms at the end of the porch. And the place is so much lighter and brighter. I wish I could just slap some paint down on the not-favourite orange pavers too.

Follow the red brick road

While we were painting, the mother in law thought she could do a better job at my newly laid out courtyard after cleaning out monster spiky plants in April.

The sloppy work I did wasn’t good enough. Her OCD nature came to the fore and she attacked it with some rulers and levelers.

See the sloppy work?

See the sloppy work?

The MIL insisted we scour the city for old bricks. We got a small stash from a demolition, cleaned them (she went at them with toothbrush, mind!), and then the dedicated woman spent all day making sure the line of bricks was perfect. PERFECT. Stamps all facing up and out… And then made me pick up my pebbles, hose them and put them down again…

My newly laid brick edge

My newly laid brick edge

#thereisaplaceforOCDinthisworld!

Now, you see what a sloppy job of those pebbles? I thought I was happy with my work. Until I stood back and viewed the after.

Watering a dead plant

And the last thing… I found out I’d been spending 5 months faithfully standing outside in my PJs watering a DEAD plant!

We moved a weeping tree from within the courtyard to the front yard/garden, right next to my front door in April. (It was apparently dead already and it’s now October.)

The apparently dead plant

The apparently dead plant

My mother in law pronounced it dead on sight (I’m a BUDDING green-thumb). She inveigled us into getting a sweet little crabapple blossom tree, normally $90-120. She insisted it was a steal at $60 and “we couldn’t pass it up”. After planting it, she pronounced that it apparently “loves the spot” :)

Replacing the dead but moist plant with a sweet little crabapple blossom

Replacing the dead but moist plant with a sweet little crabapple blossom

Less apricot

It didn’t take long, only a few hours in the afternoon… I grabbed the leftover white paint and attacked the eaves and post… and am considering doing the dividing wall and gate next (behind my crabapple).

I love the gleaming white!

I love the gleaming white!

Formal bin parking

Upon suggestion of the father in law, I used what the previous owner left from paving the courtyard to create a “bin” area for my rubbish, recycle and green waste. I’m very happy with the outcome!

My formal bin parking

My formal bin parking

Nice huh? I love my in laws visiting ;) Things get done around the place!

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