Garden progress | The Crafty Gentleman blogOkay, I’m just gonna own up and say it: I never knew gardening could be so fun! With the spring sunshine making a glorious appearance this week, I’ve been spending most of my waking hours out in my garden – and I’m loving it. I thought it’d be fun to give you guys a bit of a sneak peek at how it’s shaping up… but first up, let me rewind a little.

We (that’s me and my partner Gareth) bought and moved into our first house last December. The house is a new build, meaning it’s a completely blank canvas for us to decorate how we want. Not only that, but this is the first time since our childhoods that either of us have lived in a place with a garden, so we were especially excited to get green fingered and creative with our little slice of outdoor space. Here’s how the garden looked when we first moved in:

Garden progress | The Crafty Gentleman blogNothing much, right? It’s a decent size, with turf and a single line of slabs by the door. That’s it. I told you that the house was a blank canvas! Since then, we’ve been working like mad to get the garden into shape before the summer arrives. We started off by ordering a bespoke shed from a local merchant (it cost a bit more than if we’d gone to a big garden centre chain – but the quality is SO worth it, not to mention the fact that it’s good to support local businesses). We then spent an afternoon digging up a patch of turf and laying the foundations for our shed.

We were pretty bummed to discover that the ground had not been levelled well by the builders. It was draining terribly, meaning it had become a boggy mess, and there was a shocking amount of rocks, stones and even plastic piping beneath the thin layer of top sand. But despite this, we persevered!

Garden progress | The Crafty Gentleman blog Garden progress | The Crafty Gentleman blog Garden progress | The Crafty Gentleman blog

The shed was delivered last week. We love it. I can’t even describe how good it is to get our power tools, lawnmower and garden kit out of our spare bathroom and into their true home in the shed! The house feels so much less cluttered now. In time, we’re thinking of painting the shed and the fence… although I gotta admit, I do kinda like the raw wood look. I think I’ll need to ponder on that one for a bit, before making a decision on what to do.

In addition to the shed, we’ve also made some custom raised beds. I’ll share more about these in an upcoming DIY tutorial, but here’s the quick spoiler: they were super easy, cheap and quick to make – but they look awesome! I can’t wait for our vegetables to grow and fill the raised beds.

Garden progress | The Crafty Gentleman blog

Last up on the list of major changes: we spent a whole afternoon last week digging up approximately a third of the turf and all of the slabs laid by the builders. Why? Because we’re planning on replacing it with a patio; al fresco dining, here we come! We’ve ordered the patio slabs (geez, they are not cheap…), and should hopefully get around to laying them over the next week. We’re going to extend the patio into a small path leading to the shed, so we don’t need to traipse over the grass to get to it. Once that’s done, we’re going to get some garden furniture and start adding potted plants and garden lights to finish it off.

Garden progress | The Crafty Gentleman blog Garden progress | The Crafty Gentleman blog Garden progress | The Crafty Gentleman blog

Keep an eye on my Instagram page for more updates on my garden and house; although I’ll of course be blogging some more updates soon too! – Mike.