Posted in Gardening, Getting Organized, Getting Started, trampolines, Uncategorized

How to dig an in-ground trampoline

 Step 1: find a trampoline that will fit in the space you want to use 

In our case we needed a rectangular shape so that we would still have some yard left for other things

Step 2: ORDER IT right now otherwise you’ll just have a huge hole in the ground with nothing to put in it!

Step 3: order only the trampoline and disregard offers to have it installed professionally because you totally got this and geez, it’ll be cheaper right? Those install places charge a fortune! 

Step 4: rent a backhoe for the day and start digging!

Step 5: have everyone watch and even have them “help” dig so they all feel involved


Step 6:
keep digging and digging…at some point measure to see how deep you really need to go


Step 7:
build the frame for the sides and put the trampoline in the hole


Step 8:
fill in around the tramp with dirt. Call everyone over to help you and then fill some more. Wait for the dirt to settle and then fill in more… repeat over and over for about a week


Step 9:
see that mountain of dirt?  Just get used to that being there

Step 10: call everyone you know and ask them to come over and get some free dirt. Advertise on yard sale sites and talk to everyone you know about taking some dirt away.

Finally, use the leftover railroad ties and dirt and create a gigantic flowerbed thinking this will use up all the remaining dirt

Step 11: that uses a lot but not all of it. Resign yourself to the fact that you have a mound of dirt there and whatever. Let a year go by.

Step 12: get fed up with the dirt one day and just spread it out all over the yard on top of the gravel and then go get more gravel to put over the top of the dirt and give your arms a real good workout until about 1am

Step 13: after the padding completely falls apart 6 months later, order a new one and wonder why you didn’t do that from day 1. This one is so much better!


Step 14:
put the kid’s basketball hoop next to the tramp, why did you never think of this before?

Enjoy!

Posted in Gardening, Getting Started, Plants

Top 7 Plants for Hot Hot Summers

Here in Bakersfield, we have year round plant growing weather
We have winter but no snow
And it freezes, but not every day
And only during about a 2 month time period
(if at all)
(which means surviving winter is simply having a tarp handy to throw over the garden when the times comes)

This means a couple things:
1. Some plants that WOULD be annuals can be perennials
IMG_2138
(For example: these are alyssums I planted two years ago)
2. You can garden year round if you plant right (more later on that)
3. Here we don’t battle the snow, we battle the HEAT! The concern is not making it through the winter, it’s making it through the summer!

So based on these facts
(and sorry if you don’t live here and this doesn’t apply to you)
These are the plants that I have found are the BREAD WINNERS
These are the NO FAIL,
I can survive the worst gardener
I hold on with almost nothing
Plants for your yard 🙂
(and they look good too)

Alyssms
HERE are some perennial yellow ones
Or just your local Garden store

IMG_2159
Small white or purple flowers they seem so small and delicate but they can handle some major heat
They need good consistent water
But put these right by the sprinklers and they are GOLDEN
They get bigger and bigger
And if they are under some sort of overhang
(like under a tree or palm)
They will last for years
And they make you look like some amazing gardener 🙂

Lantanas
(Order pink/white and white ones HERE)

IMG_2151
These are another huge favorite
They come in purple, red/orange
And my favorite but I only have one
(the rest I have maybe 6-8 lol)
are the pink/yellow/purple ones
SO PRETTY
These are ALL over my yard
They love the heat
They grow bigger and better every year
They will come back every year easily
IMG_2144

Cannas
These are bulb plants
You can buy them at any garden store at the beginning of the year as bulbs
And then later as plants as the season goes on

IMG_2147

These are a little too hardy in some cases 🙂
My friend told me once that they had a small fire in her yard
And their whole yard went up in flames
The only thing to survive? The cannas 🙂
So beware of where you plants these maybe?
They will multiply 🙂
But as long as that’s what you want, it’s good
They will be full and beautiful
These pictured are the green leaf ones
There are also purple leaf ones
And the flowers on top are either red or yellow
Very pretty, very nice broad green leaves
And a good filler for hard places.
They need water but not tons and once established
Good luck EVER killing them off entirely 🙂
Good lazy gardener plant
They can get very tall–12 ft tall one year but average probably about 6-8ft

Peppermint
IMG_2148

This is another plant you will have a hard time ever killing 🙂
It multiplies
It can survive on little water
And it will multiply…and multiply….and multiply
Careful where you plant this!
I use this as a ground cover:
IMG_2141This flowerbed is often shaded and often has a lot of crap dropped on it from the palm trees
Most plants don’t like this area but my peppermint loves it!
Nice solution to a potentially hard spot
And every time you bug it, you will smell it!
Good scent I think, I always enjoy them

Furman’s Red Salvia
(Order some here)
IMG_2140I wish I had a dozen of these plants!
I have one main one that is now 3-4 years old
And it just gets better and better every year
It blooms almost constantly
And it’s a nice big bush now
It’s in one of the hottest places of the yard
Needs water but will take a hard day or two if it has to
Super pretty and super tough: LOVE

Purple Fountain Grass
(Order some HERE)
IMG_2143I have two big bushes of these and they are great
They cover up a big problem area in my yard because they get HUGE
And I think they are super pretty
Word to the wise though: these do need to be hacked down every year
And the “blades” are like tiny little papercutters
Wear gloves or you WILL get “papercut” type cuts all over your hands
Other than that, they are wonderful

Daylilies
(Order some HERE:
This site has 21 different kinds/colors so have fun choosing!)
IMG_2167
My front walkway is all Daylilies and they are so pretty
IMG_2166
They are hardy, LOVE the heat
And big pretty flowers most of the summertime
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And even when there are no blooms
You get nice green “grassy” plants to accent the garden:
IMG_2150

Posted in Gardening, Sprinkler Systems

Ways to Water (besides sprinklers)

They say that most sprinklers are completely ineffective
And that actually, your sprinklers are making your grass worse:
you water too often, too much and you’re making your grass into cement
And most of the water isn’t absorbed anyway

Around here we have been in a drought for about 3 years
That’s changed this year gratefully
But in that time I’ve come up with a few new ways to water
And I think to water BETTER than before
Ways to “Conserve Water” better and
really just to water better so that things grow better
Because here’s the number one factor in watering:
No Water=Dead Plants

So besides Traditional Sprinklers, the ones that just spray your grass
Here are some other options for your flowerbeds and gardens

Bubblers
These are pretty common I would say
Many houses come standard with these
And they are good, better than nothing right
But in the end, the problem is that the water goes where it wants to
IMG_2131So if you have bubblers, this is the solution: Trenches
12804667_10207923436458219_7706123950155093967_nUnless you want your water to just pool in the middle
And go no where
And for half your garden to die
You have to trench it and give the water a place to FILL
And a way for it to do all this BY ITSELF

IMG_2114(This is my lever to turn on the bubblers in my garden)
In flowerbeds, although not so square, the same rule applies
Give the water ROADS.  Tell it where to go
And your bubblers will do the rest
Next to my lawn I have small bushes
The sprinklers there are sprayers
And that’s fine except the bushes in certain sections get more water
So I dug a trench all along the base of them
So that when the sprinklers run
Any excess water will just run down the line to the dryer plants

Soak Systems
Now if you have bubblers
And want something more efficient
These are my next favorite:
IMG_2125Bubblers can be replaced with these heads
Or these heads if you have a larger area
And then you attach Soaker Lines
(like Soak HOSES but smaller and they attach to your sprinkler)
IMG_2133Which makes it nice because they will still run on the “schedule”
But will soak the bed instead of spraying it,
Which makes the water go directly into the dirt
IMG_2124And then if you put these UNDER a layer of mulch?
(This one is pulled out so you can see it)
All your water will stay with your plants
Not spraying, not evaporating 🙂
IMG_2126

Plant Circles
Fancy name right? Made it up myself
Don’t know if these have a name for real
Because I created them (patent pending! lol)
These are good to use if you have individual plants to water:
IMG_2130Or if you have potted plants on a patio
Use this method when you don’t want to water everywhere
Just a SPECIFIC spot

It’s still set up with a head like this:
IMG_2133Only now it’s just regular tubing
And then when you get to the place you want the water:
You put a joint (comes in packs of 25! happy jointing! haha)
in like this of soaker line:
IMG_2129IMG_2128So what gets watered is JUST the plant, not all the other stuff
(Which would cause weeds or a soaked patio)

Soak Hose…on a timer!
Soak hoses are the go-to for no sprinklers
They do the same thing as the other systems
But soak hoses require very little setup 🙂
IMG_2136The only problem is that if it’s just a hose
You have to remember to turn them on!
And if you get sick…or go on vacation….
Dead plants

So this is my solution:
IMG_2132Put the hose on a timer
It runs every day just like sprinklers
Or wow, look at this one, fancy and high tech
Put that on the wish list for me…

The year I used this, my back flowerbeds did the best ever
Only problem I had was in order for this to work?
You have to have the faucet on ALL THE TIME
Then the timer lets the water actually FLOW
Whenever you set it to
But the line is still ON
And in the case of the faucet the hose was on
That meant it leaked and sprayed
Not the product, MY faucet
I mean it’s outside, it’s older, of course it leaks!
And so after awhile I started turning it off during the day
Which if i have to do that, the “automatic” factor is out the window
But it definitely helped to just get the job done
And I didn’t have to “remember” all the time
it just happened just like sprinklers.

Now final words of advice:
Soaker lines only last 1 year, two years tops,
so you will have to replace them every other year
Mostly they break off the head, or they break in half
I’ve had gardeners wack them in half or kids pull them out
But for the most part, the plants hide them
Andthey work great so hey
Same with soaker hoses
Bubblers work for years
But you have to redo the Trenches pretty regularly also

Happy Watering!!!