When Justin and I bought our house in September of last year we saw so much potential in our little fixer upper. We’ve been making slow but good progress on the house starting with a mini kitchen remodel, reclaimed wood accent wall, doing some IKEA hacks to glam up some bookcases for my closet, and more recently building an outdoor shower. One area of our house we had completely neglected until recently was our backyard. Yes, I had purchased furniture for our outdoor dining area, rug included, and we added a hot tub but we’d left the landscaping alone. Since California is in a major drought we haven’t watered anything except for some plants with grey water. Our lawn suffered majorly except for the weeds which seem to come from no where with little water and look terrible. I was getting tired of walking on dry, dead grass and dirt to and from our hot tub and so was Justin. We’ve contemplated removing our dead lawn and replacing it with high quality faux grass but it’s expensive and other projects have been higher up on our list. But one DIY project we decided to tackle now was the addition of a new brick patio from our shed (turned Mancave…more on that coming soon) to our hot tub. I wanted to connect our existing brick patio and walkway so I looked on craigslist for old brick. Thankfully it wasn’t all that hard to find and much less expensive than having to buy it from Home Depot or similar home improvement or landscaping stores. The brick was delivered a few days into our project. Here is a step by step of what we did to create our new brick patio space.
1. Plot out where you want your brick patio to go. Make marks so it’s easy to follow.
2. Dig out 5-6 inches deep for the entire space and make sure it’s level.
3. Remove any large chunks of dirt, roots, or rocks that might get in the way.
4. Lay down landscaping fabric once the dirt is flat and compacted and secure with metal blanket staples.
5. Put a layer of sand down and smooth out so that it’s flat. We worked in sections so it was easier to work around.
6. Start to lay your brick in the desired pattern. We chose to stick with the pattern of our existing brick patio.
7. Continue steps 5 and 6 until you have finished bricking your entire area. You probably will need to cut some of your bricks to fit. We (meaning Justin) used an angle grinder.
8. Pour more sand over your new brick patio and sweep it in so that it goes down the cracks. This will help the bricks from moving around.
9. Wet the entire area after sand has been brushed and settled into the cracks.
10. Compact the entire area using either a hand compactor or electric compactor to ensure the bricks are set.
To add a little more life and color to the space I decided to plant small succulents around the perimeter of our new brick patio. I took the space needed into account when starting our brick design. I left the thickness of one brick around where we added the brick.
Total project cost us about $350. We got the wooden planter and fire pit from my inlaws so that helped keep our project budget down. At some point we will swap out the fir pit for this one that I have been wanting for a while since I’d much prefer to have a gas fire pit with glass.
We still have a little more I’d like to do in this area of our backyard but what do you think about the progress we’ve made on it so far?
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