Injecting some fun into our project

This will be a quiet build week for us as Jane is on holiday, so we will be in the cafe.  In the meantime, just a few pictures I wanted to share with you:

This one is of Mike’s careful bracing of the ceiling in floor 2, necessitated because the joists on the floor above are being cut and re-attached to the new stairwell rising through the building.  Of course, we weren’t planning on walking on the floor whilst the joists were un-attached, but there is no harm in the belt and braces approach.

High tech bracing…

How you might have laughed, though, if you had seen us with the plywood.  We recently took delivery of plywood sheets 8 foot by 4 foot, which we needed to get onto the third floor.  The new stairs do not yet exist; the old stairs only travel to floors 1 and 2, with the third floor accessed via a very steep and narrow set of stairs.  We therefore had to bring the boards up to floor 1 balcony and in through the door; post the boards up through a gap in the ceiling on floor 1 (to the right of the area you see above); then turned through a right angle and manoeuvred up through the gap at head height (visible in the photo) and then we ran up to floor 3 and pulled the boards through.

Last Thursday we declared a different day (as it was not raining) and decided to spend a day weed-killing the rhododendron ponticum.  As you can see, we were armed for the task with a power drill and a small syringe

Tools of my trade

which we filled with magic gloop and injected into the rhodo stems, after removing the top growth (so that we could see what we were doing).

Approx 15 minutes in, and the waste heap is looking like this

The timing is important.  We have been advised to stem inject in October, perhaps November, as at this time of year the sap would be ‘retreating’ to the roots and so the weed killer is drawn back to the roots which we hope will prove very effective in weakening the plant.  During the day, we managed to clear one bank of approx 12 large plants which we trust will die off over the winter.

Me? Tired? Surely not – this is such fun!


We have one further stand of perhaps 20 plants that I want to treat this winter as it will clear the top path on the river side, leaving the top path on the road side to next year at which point (I hope) we will have cleared the higher ground and be ready to start the slow descent to the lower garden.  Or perhaps we will have another dry day soon and I will find my syringe finger twitching!

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