Monday, July 11, 2016

The Garden Shed Gets a Makeover Complete with Snake Barrier

Hi everyone!  Happy Monday.  Another week.  I hope you have a great week, and I hope I get lots done this week...

When I last visited with you here on the blog, I had worked my way around to the back of the house and was going to turn the corner to work on the flower bed on that next side of the house...well, as it happens sometimes (frequently), I got sidetracked.  I looked back and saw the pitiful looking little garden shed that has been neglected for as long as it's existed. It was calling out to me, so I diverted my attention to that little shed.

We had gotten the painters to paint it to match the house, and I had painted the old white door a new bright turquoise, to match the front door of the house.  Nothing had been done beyond that.  Now, it's a cute addition to the back yard.

I wanted to make a little porch/patio thing to sort of act as an entrance, because, we know that every proper garden shed needs an entrance, right?  I had flagstone leftover from the back patio project, so I decided to use that, and edge it with brick. That job took about a week and lots of energy.  When I finished it, I decided it needed a brick wall to fill in the gap between the bottom of the building and the ground.  I guess I should tell you why....

When I was a young child, I was standing on the doorsteps of my aunt's house, which was a wood frame structure set on piers, so it was up off the ground.  As I was leaving, I stopped there to say something to her (she was inside) and when I turned around to step down, a really big rattlesnake had crawled out from under the house and was right beside me!  That did permanent damage to my psyche. To this day, decades later, I still have a fear of snakes crawling out from underneath buildings that are up off the ground.  So, now you know why I felt the need to put the faux wall made from real brick under my garden shed. Now, when I'm about to step down out of the shed, I don't worry as much, because I know there's a barrier between my feet and the space underneath the shed.  

And after all that effort, my very sweet son pointed out that I had left a small hole in my wall, and that a snake would probably still come through there.  There was a water pipe interfering with my brick wall, so I had to leave the hole-my brick-laying skills don't yet include cutting brick, so I had to do the best I could with what I had...maybe I should stick a rock in the crack.... I still feel better when I step down, knowing that if a snake is going to come out under my feet, it will have to come through the little hole.

And I will say that the brick wall was a pain to build!  I had to dig out from under the shed with a tiny shovel and not much room to work, all the while watching for snakes that I was sure were lurking under there.  Then, I had a tiny level to put on top of each brick to make sure that they were level.  That last row was tight, trying to push them in under the building with no room to spare.  It did take me most of a day, but I'm happy with the way it turned out. Not only does it put a layer of protection between me and the snakes, but it's pretty, too! How about that?

I wanted to use something unusual to hold the garden hose...we had removed the plastic, not so pretty one, when the building was painted.  I decided on this piece of rusty fence that I had leftover from another project a few years ago.  It's fine for now, just propped up, but hubby is going to attach it to the wall with a bracket that holds it off the wall about four inches.  That should give plenty of room for the hose to wrap around easily.

For years, we had just "put" things beside the shed that didn't fit inside.  It had turned into a big pile of stuff that was buried in leaves.  When I started digging in to clean it up, I just kept finding more and more clay pots.  Lawd have mercy...why did I buy so many pots?  Now, I'll clean them and store them inside the shed, or maybe I should just get rid of them.  I'll never have that many living plants at one time.  I'm sort of known for my brown thumb...

I still plan to add another piece of rusty fence on hinges to the open part on the left side. Those side board things are used on the truck when we go to pick up large loads of mulch or compost, and they really need to be hidden, just not pretty...

I hung some of my galvanized tubs and pans onto the walls because they needed a storage place, and because I thought they were pretty there.  It just screams "Garden Shed" now, don't you think?  Oh, and every garden shed needs something green, so I planted that pretty tropical looking plant (heliconia) beside the door.  

Now, I need to head back over to where I left off by the house...Stay tuned.


  1. Well, that's just adorable and I know just how much work it took to get it that way. I love your idea for hanging the garden hose. We have a spigot right next to the front entrance of our house and I've been trying to come up with a clever way to disguise it. I mean it's right on the front of the house. What were the builders thinking?

    1. Thank you my friend, and I know you understand, because you and your hubby work just as hard as I do in the yard! That would be awkward having a spigot in front of the house...and sometimes I think those builders DON'T THINK at all. Silly people...We'll have to find you something pretty to put there.

  2. Beautiful! Your "snake barrier" looks pretty as a foundation to your shed. Love the galvanized tubs too. Can't wait to see it all in person.