Last week the backyard excavation began. The objective was to remove the old parking pad, old sidewalk, some steps and a couple retaining walls. All was accomplished and after hauling away much of it, only this pile remains.
Though to our neighbors this looks like a mess, we saw an opportunity to reuse some of the concrete. After all, this isn’t Ready-mix, this is 75yr old concrete made with river gravel from the nearby Meramec. This means that there are unique pebbles all throughout the concrete and this can certainly be used somewhere (see pic below).
So in a truly sustainable application, we’ve started breaking up and installing the chunks of this old concrete as our front yard landscaping. We’re not entirely done, though I think we got a pretty good start this weekend. And if you’ve never done landscaping before, it never looks good until the shrubbery is in and the mulch is down. (see pics below)
Besides being able to reuse the old concrete, we’re also eliminating the need for a lawn-mower (that’s $150 towards my solar panel) and the need for for gas. As well, the type of indigenous shrubs and flowers we’ll be planting will require much less water than the grass.
Not sure how much carbon offsetting we’re accomplishing with this landscaping project, but I’d say enough to offset a flight to a warm and relaxing beach at least.