FAST Blog: Family Homestead

Permaculture, Preparedness, Homesteading & Survival

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Waging War on Ivy

When we moved in to our house a year ago, this was our starting point, a very small back garden devoid of anything useful, the only thing successfully growing in it was the weeds and the ivy!

So we set to work clearing the ivy. After a bit of research online I concluded that there was no quick and easy way of ridding yourself of ivy short of digging out every last route, so settled for sawing through the trunks at ground level then attacking the vines with a large knife, I'm sure the neighbours thought I'd lost the plot. I'm sure the ivy will be an on going nemesis as it comes over the fence from our neighbours so there is only so much we can do to keep it at bay before it decides to come over the trenches and face us again.

After beating back the ivy we cleared an area to put a shed down and knocked together some raised beds out of scaffold boards. We coated the scaffold boards in some cheap and cheerful Homebase own brand wood treatment in the hope they might last a bit longer, although it has made them a marvellous shade of Oompa Loompa!

At the time we had no storage for tools etc and all we had was one battered old shovel. It was painstakingly slow moving the few ton of soil from the front garden to fill the raised beds, especially since we did it by hand in buckets, but it has given us an area of good quality soil/compost to begin growing in. We also got a composter which I think is a must, it'll save you buying compost or fertiliser and massively cuts the amount of kitchen waste going in the bin, not to mention grass cuttings and garden waste. It was well in to spring by this time so we had already missed the boat on many of the things we would have liked to have planted, but still managed to get a few things in the ground before it was too late, more on that in our next post

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