Grafting in the Garden

I have been bursting ALL week to tell you what we got up to last weekend. Those who follow me on Facebook will have seen a sneak peek. When I wrote about our Garden Gathering a couple of weeks ago, the pictures took my hubby by surprise and I think they made us both realise we needed to spend some time out there to tidy things up. Although I had done my best to ‘prettify’ and make things look their best, there was no longer any hiding from the fact that the patio was in a bad way, as were our table and chairs.

I think the patio had developed some kind of illness because it had these white spots ALL OVER it!

Definitely coming down with something

Definitely coming down with something

 

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Not looking good

I don’t know what caused them and I was skeptical that they could be removed but we decided to give it a go and see if we could clean it. Enter the Karcher power washer!

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The Karcher is quite a beast. We borrowed this one from my parents but if I didn’t have access to it, I may consider making the investment as it is so amazing. It hooks up to the mains electric and a hose connection is required to feed the water into the machine. The power of the spray is very impressive and I was amazed how easily it ripped through the dirt.

Here you can clearly see the clean area and that still needing attention. Everyone had a turn, even the dog was very excited to get involved!

Here you can clearly see the clean area and that still needing attention. Everyone had a turn, even the dog was very excited to get involved!

It took 3-4 hours to clean our entire patio and the result was incredible. It looks like brand new paving!

It looks brand new!

It looks brand new!

We were so pleased with the results. It’s amazing what a difference a few hours can make. Shall we have a quick patio cleaning before and after?

Patio 1Amazing huh?! While all the patio jet-washing was going on, I was busy elsewhere trying to breathe life into our tired old outdoor dining set. The set belonged to my parents and we took it on when they decided to buy new. We had given the table a coat of paint a couple of years ago but the chairs were still surviving on their original stain treatment which they received goodness knows how many years ago – at least 3 or 4.

As you can see, action was needed

As you can see, action was needed

Now, let me be honest with you. In my (extensive) experience of reading and watching home improvement magazines, blogs and TV shows, I have heard expressions used such as ‘gave the chairs a quick coat of paint’ or ‘a quick sand down and a fresh coat of paint’ or even ‘one quick whip around with a paint brush.’ These people are telling you lies! There was nothing quick about this task. Admittedly, I am not massively experienced in the art of painting but I have done a fair amount in my time and I’m telling you, these chairs drained my spirit like nothing else! The process was DULL! They took HOURS and HOURS to paint and every time I looked at them from a new angle there were MORE surfaces I realised I had missed. After the first two, I felt like I was losing the will to go on. The table was a doddle in comparison. Here is a before and after of one of the chairs.

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We did discover something which helped speed the process. (Top tip alert!) After sanding the first chair, I noticed how the Karcher was stripping the patio of dirt and wondered if it would do the same to the paint on the chairs. I took the jet cleaner to one of the chairs and lo and behold….

The karcher stripped virtually all the old paint off the chairs making the sanding process SOOOOO much easier

The karcher stripped virtually all the old paint off the chairs making the sanding process SOOOOO much easier

Thank goodness, by the time I had almost finished painting the first couple of chairs, the hubster had finished his patio cleaning duties and was on hand to help me out. He is in the building trade and started out many moons ago by working on site learning his craft and (thank the lord!) did a fair amount of painting and decorating while he was at it. Consequently, his painting technique (unlike my own) is swift and accurate and by the time I finished my third chair, he had painted the other three – HALLELUJAH!! We then took one half of the table each and before we knew it, we had what looked like a whole new dining set.

Oh so worth all the painting trauma!

Oh so worth all the painting trauma!

How much better does it look?! The paint we used is Dulux Weathershield Green Glades. We used this when we painted the playhouse around 3 years ago and thought it would be nice if everything matched.

Dulux Weathershield Exterior Satin in Green Glades

Dulux Weathershield Exterior Satin in Green Glade

While we were busy and the weather was good, I got rid of our old dying shrubs and replanted our pots with bedding plants which I am sure will be bursting with colour before long. I also put some in the window boxes on the playhouse and added some bunting because, well, who doesn’t love bunting?! I will be sure to share some pictures once everything comes into flower. Here’s how they look now, already so much better. (The top left picture is the sad ‘before’ shot).

Please excuse Bo's photo-bombing

Please excuse Bo’s photo-bombing

Only problem now is, the playhouse needs another ‘quick coat of paint’ to match in with everything else! Any offers?! All in all, I am over the moon with how much better everything looks outside now. Let’s take a few moments to appreciate all the hard work from every angle shall we?

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The roses are from the garden – things grow there! It’s a miracle!

 

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Ok, ok, I’m done now! How about you? Has anyone else out there been busy breathing new life into old furniture? I would love to hear about it. It’s a great feeling.

Now that I’ve spent an entire sunny weekend working in the garden, I think we can probably expect it to rain for the rest of the summer! (Please let that not be true! And don’t blame me if it is?!) ‘Til next time….xoxo

2 comments

  1. Sally says:

    Thanks for the inspiration. I have a small metal patio set of table, 2 chairs and setee that has been beaten up the last 2 summers by bad hail storms. I bought the paint last summer, but never got serious about painting. We’ve been in a drought prone area for several years with watering restrictions and the yard has been pathetic-looking. Things are looking better this summer, so time to tackle the patio set–probably just in time for the next hail storm.

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