The pressure, the pressure!

Yesterday was a very pressurised day – 1400 PSI to be precise. It was the day of the Grand Patio Cleaning Exercise. Two years’ worth of filth to eliminate, since it didn’t get its annual blast last year. Well, more like about 10 years worth really given all the dirt that’s been trampled across or piled up on it over the last 12 months. Here’s a before shot:

Filthy gorgeous

I procrastinated until about 11.30. (It’s one of those ‘can’t-be-bothered-to-start-but-really-quite-enjoy-it-when-I-get-going’ jobs.) However, when I took my lovely Karcher beast out of it’s highly effective cheap black bin-bag protective cover, I was dismayed to find that something (presumably furry and rodent-like) had munched its way the hose. I tried taping it up but it was a bit of a futile exercise really. More water was coming out the hole than the ‘wand’ – and doing so in just the right place to ensure I got more of a soaking than the patio.

I spent the next hour or so dashing from hardware shop to garden centre in the hope that I could buy a replacement hose. No such luck. The garden centre had various accessories, attachments or whole new washers, but not replacement hoses. How stupid. (Serves me right for not checking before I started, eh?) They all assured me B&Q or Homebase would have what I wanted, but there was no way I was going to attempt visiting a DIY store on a bank holiday Saturday. (I probably wouldn’t have got home until Tuesday evening. ) Then I remembered my uncle had the same make washer as mine. Would he mind lending it to me? Not at all fortunately.  (Thank you – much, MUCH appreciated!)

So I finally got started about 3pm (since by then it was clearly time for lunch and a relaxing cuppa first). It took me 3 and a bit hours to blast the ‘main patio’ by the house, but fortunately a mere 30 further minutes to nip my way round the slabs that were put down last year. I bet my neighbours were sick of the sound of the damn machine. Ah well – it’s a ‘once a year job – and I wasn’t the only one doing it.  Just like the days when the sound of lawn-mowers fills the air, it was evident that today was the day for pressure washing.

Anyway – it was definitely worth it in the end. Here’s the ‘After’ shot (taken this morning in the rain).

Sparkly bright

There was much stopping and starting, since I could only go so far before getting a small lake in one particular corner which had to be pooled into the flower beds (using a dustpan and bucket technique). However, giving the plants a drink at least made me feel slightly better about exactly how much water I was using. (More than normal – since it was dirtier than normal.) All the wet muck had to be regularly scraped up and chucked into the flower beds too. Mudpies – lovely!

Here’s me afterwards – that’s dirt, not a tan. 🙂

Me after the patio cleaning thing

And finally – one of my occasional dangling out of the window pictures. Do you like my two-tone lawn? LOL.  Still, the new bit seems to be settling in nicely. The joins are more or less gone, and I know it will all settle down to one colour eventually. We’re forecast rain for the next couple of days but, if we get some dry weather after that, I’ll hopefully be able to fill up the blank bits with a combination of summer bedding (which is still currently resigned to the greenhouse) and some salad leaves (currently still in the seed packet….!).

Aerial shot


4 Responses to “The pressure, the pressure!”

  1. 1 Jen May 26, 2008 at 6:04 am

    Ooh, I love the shape of your lawn!

    Looks great all shiny and clean – all we need now is some sun so that you can develop a proper suntan…

  2. 2 nathaliewithanh May 27, 2008 at 12:43 am

    As usual, I’m put to shame by your work. Your yard looks as lovely as your terracotta foundation.

  3. 3 vonne May 28, 2008 at 5:41 am

    Wow! That’s pretty enough for a magazine cover!
    What are the large shrubs at the far left of your garden? Or is that vines of some sort? looks like they go down the length of your fence. Just curious.
    Also, I was wondering what your lowest temps are in winter?
    You may have covered all this, but i haven’t had a chance to read your archives yet.

  4. 4 nezza May 28, 2008 at 10:00 pm

    Jen – thank you! LOL. I quite like distinct ‘shapes’ and then the plants ‘softening’ things up. I hope that doesn’t sound too pretentious…. DEFINITELY need some sun.

    NWaH – awww thanks. But then I’m put to shame by your beautiful photos!

    Vonne – The shrub right at the front is a Forsythia. It flowers yellow in the spring, and then is green for the rest of the year. There’s another in the far right hand corner – but it’s new and only just getting going. The rest of the green stuff on the left is nextdoor’s conifer hedge…It needs a bit of a haircut really.

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