Tuesday, August 5, 2008
After working out the plans for the garden and ordering the seed, the search was on for how to make the garden fit the design we had made, and on the cheap. Thanks to Internet posts and classified ad. sites like craigslist, finding used, salvaged, cheap or free items is easier than it has ever been. For a small scale development project like this, a site like craigslist can provide almost anything you need to fit your budget provided you have the time to go around and get it. So far we've been able to balance our time and the resources provided to us to search around the web for deals. I found a yard sale post for some pre-owned flagstone about an hour south in San Jose. I was lucky enough to able to borrow Pete's van to go down and grab it with Omar, a coworker of mine at Boogaloos. The downside to searching high and low for bargains is that one may end up wasting a great deal of time searching for the perfect fit at the loss of productive work hours at the site. When first arriving at the "yard sale" I was skeptical that we'd driven all the way down there for nothing. The seller was unable to provide a great description over the phone. I really didn't know what to expect. I suppose I half expected a pile of stone ready for hauling, but when we arrived it was something slightly different. The stones were still embedded in the ground around her yard forming a rough pathway to her porch. But, they were "for sale", so away we dug. Scraping away clumps of mud slugs and ants from the undersides of the flagstone added an interesting twist to the purchase. With the help of the seller's neighbor (she wasn't even there- we only talked by phone) we piled the stones in the van and named our price. $70 for the load (about a half pallet in all) seemed like a good enough deal. They were thick stones that looked as though they would clean up well. There looked as though there were enough small ones to fill out the plans I had drawn. Stone yards and landscaping centers charge ¢.15 to ¢.50 per pound for flagstone. Our plundering saved us a good deal of cash. Not to mention that they were nicely worn unique pieces of stone. Once laid out and cleaned, the stones looked great and were perfect for the design we'd thought up. For $70 or $80 dollars and a 4 hours, we now had a finished pathway and mini-patio that made for easy access beds and a garden worth looking at. Beds made, its is time for some planting.