DIY projects at The Garden House, Brighton March 04 2015

It all got a bit Pinterest today at The Garden House, Brighton as we started work on a craft / DIY project to create a water feature using hypertufa. What looked quite simple on youtube actually turned out to be pretty difficult and Ro, Richard, Vicky and I spent most of today’s Wednesday Gardening Group trying different ways of making cement stick to an old kitchen sink!

Hypertufa is a type of cement commonly used to make garden ornaments and Bridge wanted us to use it to cover an old sink which she has found. The plan is to plant it up and it will become part of a water feature in the garden.

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Hypertufa            Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Hypertufa

Firstly, the sink was scored to get a bit of grip and then covered in a liberal layer of PVA glue which smelt of art days at school.

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Hypertufa

To give the planter the rustic look we added grit, sand and manure to our cement and water then got to work sticking it to the sink. Jeez, it was difficult. We tried various techniques; large handfuls, small handfuls, flinging the hypertufa at the sink to get it to stick. Every time we felt we were getting somewhere a huge clump of cement would slide off the side, gravity was not our friend today.

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Hypertufa

If you ever decide to try this yourself, our top tip would be to continually poke the hypertufa all over as you are spreading it, repeatedly prodding the bits you have already done to remind them that they are supposed to be sticking to the sides. If we were to do this again we would probably do one side at a time and work on that side face up to prevent it slipping off, but hey, you live and learn and after about an hour we had the whole sink covered and were quite happy with the result.

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Hypertufa

Once we were done we wedged some bricks underneath the sink, hoping that this will stop the hypertufa from sliding all the way off. The cement takes 7 days to dry so I’ll update you next week on whether it survived the week!

So what else did we get up to at Wednesday Gardening Group this week? Loads of big jobs, that's what. 

We pruned the hawthorn bush…

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Pruning the hawthorn          Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Pruning the hawthorn

We pruned and heeled (planted) some young fruit trees (Victoria Plum, Braeburn  Apple, William’s Pear and Morello Cherry)…

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Planting young fruit trees

We planted up the pretty chair that Vicky had made for Bridge’s birthday with a cushion of thyme…

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. A thyme chair.

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. A cushion of thyme.

We made some root cuttings of Papaver giant King Kong. The roots looked a bit like a dead squid, weird…

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Papaver giant King Kong

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Papaver giant King Kong

We set up the new propagation cables in the greenhouse. They were placed in a wooden box and covered with grit so that seeds and young plants can be placed inside. Here is Scott turning it on to 20 degrees, ready for some young seedlings to be placed inside,

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Propagation tubes.

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Propagation tubes.

and here are Deborah and Bridge working out what to put in their new toy.

 Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Propagation tubes.

And after all that hard work!? Well we all had a lovely walk around the garden.

You have to remember to do that every now and then, especially when it’s so full of Spring!

Garden House Brighton by What You Sow. Crocus.

 

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