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Need some DIY/landscaping advice


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#1 SportsGuy

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 07:14 PM

So, I have an area in my backyard that is basically dirt and, when it rains, mud. My 2 dogs just bring the mud in my house and when we eventually have kids, they will do the same.

Obviously, that sucks.

Now, part of my problem is that this area is under my deck...meaning, there is no sun getting to the area, so growing grass is an issue.

So, what are my choices here? Can I lay down sod or will that be an issue as well because of the lack of sun?

A patio can obviously happen but that's more expensive....I'm terrible at home improvement stuff but it doesn't seem overly difficult to do a patio yourself..it's just hard work.

So, what are my best options iyo?

#2 McNulty

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 07:20 PM

Rocks?

@fuzydunlop


#3 Markus

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 07:25 PM

That fake grass stuff?


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#4 SportsGuy

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 07:26 PM

Rocks?


The only issue there is the way the area is, we basically have yard, then mud, then the house....I suppose rocks could work there but there will be areas where we will be walking and that is obviously not great on the feet.

However, I hadn't considering just putting down rock and that could be an idea....would I literally just have to lay that down and spread it out? Or do I need to put another layer down under them?

#5 NewMarketSean

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 07:30 PM

You could level out the dirt then lay down a garden tarp/ cloth, not sure what it's called but I used it when I did a garden. It's like fabric, breathable so water will run through it, and then spread a bunch of those white stones/rocks out on it. Make sure they cover everything so puddles don't form in the uneven parts. That's your quickest fix, obviously not ideal, but it could also be taken up easily when you are ready for a patio.
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#6 SportsGuy

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 07:41 PM

My other issue is that I have a nice house...good size, in a very nice community.

So, when doing this, I can't do something cheesy or poor looking because that won't work well with the neighborhood.

#7 DJ MC

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 08:01 PM

My other issue is that I have a nice house...good size, in a very nice community.

So, when doing this, I can't do something cheesy or poor looking because that won't work well with the neighborhood.

 

I was going to suggest barbed wire and a car on blocks, but oh well...

 

How high is your deck? Is this an area you access all the time (like where a lower-level door is, for example)? If it's a low deck, I would suggest just blocking it off (wooden fencing, or something similar). But it sounds like an area you go through a lot, so it's probably best to make it a patio. At least you won't have to worry about it much for a while.


@DJ_McCann

#8 NewMarketSean

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 08:11 PM

My other issue is that I have a nice house...good size, in a very nice community.
So, when doing this, I can't do something cheesy or poor looking because that won't work well with the neighborhood.


Can't be worse than mud though, right? And it's temporary.

What are others in the hood doing in the same situation?
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#9 SportsGuy

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 08:22 PM

I was going to suggest barbed wire and a car on blocks, but oh well...
 
How high is your deck? Is this an area you access all the time (like where a lower-level door is, for example)? If it's a low deck, I would suggest just blocking it off (wooden fencing, or something similar). But it sounds like an area you go through a lot, so it's probably best to make it a patio. At least you won't have to worry about it much for a while.


Yea...the deck is high up...it's right outside of my basement and the door to the basement.

#10 SportsGuy

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 08:23 PM

Can't be worse than mud though, right? And it's temporary.
What are others in the hood doing in the same situation?

The one downside to my house is on a little bit of a slope, which not everyone had to deal with, so that hurts some of this issue some.

A lot of nice paver patios in the hood though.

#11 DJ MC

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 08:26 PM

The rocks could work, too. You don't have to get big ones. Look for the little white landscaping rocks, like this:

 

2007-03-31-010-crop-web-large.jpg

 

They would look nice and not be much of an issue to walk on.


@DJ_McCann

#12 SportsGuy

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 08:43 PM

That would work but my backyard isn't that way...I have grass under the deck, just not in this area....the grass that has grow under the deck still gets some sun...but the further under the deck you go(and closer to the house, that's where the dirt/mud is.

My deck is similar to the one in that pic...under that deck, it's mulch...under mine, it's grass and dirt/mud.

#13 Russ

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 08:45 PM

Build a retainer wall with steps onto a paver patio. It's not that difficult.

#14 SportsGuy

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 09:11 PM

Build a retainer wall with steps onto a paver patio. It's not that difficult.


If I did a patio, how far do you dig down?

One site I saw, showing you how to do a patio yourself, showed a bulldozer digging your hole...that seems excessive to me, although obviously easy.
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#15 Russ

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 09:12 PM

Build a retainer wall with steps onto a paver patio. It's not that difficult.
If I did a patio, how far do you dig down? One site I saw, showing you how to do a patio yourself, showed a bulldozer digging your hole...that seems excessive to me, although obviously easy.
You need to get in the dirt and get it level. You don't need to go deep at all. Still hard work though.

#16 SportsGuy

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 09:14 PM

You need to get in the dirt and get it level. You don't need to go deep at all. Still hard work though.


I know you do like a rock and sand base...is it one of those things that you do one layer of each or do you need to do more?

#17 Russ

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 09:16 PM

They don't really layer. The sand fills in the area between the rocks, then you need to put enough sand down on top of that to make a smooth base.

#18 SportsGuy

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 09:23 PM

Now...the other thing is I have a square concrete patio/area right outside of the door before I get to that muddy area...will it look dumb, iyo, if I go from concrete to paver? Should I get that concrete area up?

#19 mweb08

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 09:23 PM

Why don't you just post a pic of this area? ;)
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#20 SportsGuy

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Posted 05 June 2014 - 09:24 PM

Why don't you just post a pic of this area? ;)


Probably do that tomorrow. :)




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