So you remember that great stone, French Vanilla Slate, I showed y’all the other day that I thought would be fantastic on the patio?
Well we ordered the stone and were busy patting ourselves on the back this morning when the landscaper informed The Partner that we needed another type of stone. Mind you, we were just giddy to start the project and didn’t take into account that we needed a 1.5 inch thickness rather than the 0.5 inch thickness we ordered.
Lesson Learned: Don’t let me order stone lest you want to end up with an expensive mistake.
Fortunately, the landscaper was able to return the incorrect stone and use the credit to purchase the new stone. Unfortunately, our snafu made the landscaper and his team about 2 hours late. So you live and learn……
Upon arrival, they didn’t waste any time digging up the gravel:
The trenches dug around the existing stones will house the new sprinkler system for the Scotch/Irish moss. Once they finished the trenches, they created a level line and begin to level out the ground as well as lay the new paver stones.
Things were moving smoothly for a little while — the patio gate direction was changed, retaining wall built and the paver stones were going down quickly. I was seriously thinking that we just may pull a Hail Mary and “get ‘er done” sooner than anticipated.
Then tragedy struck. Well not really because tragedy would be more like someone dying or realizing that the Louis Vuitton purchase you have been lauding over your friends was really fake. (Sidenote: I have an awesome story that involves a fake purse, a snooty lady and a short Jamaican nanny – it’s pretty epic). But the tragedy was three-fold: (1) we ran out of stone — we are six short; (2) we underestimated the amount of moss we needed; and (3) I was freaking out that some of the slate pavers were orange. YUP, O-R-A-N-G-E. The same as that word that rhymes with nothing – that color. Due to the high iron content in this stone, if they are left in highly saline environments say — oh a stone yard with a sh*tload of limestone — they have a tendency to form rust. So a few stones were looking very much like Carrot Top’s hair and I heart attack….
Lesson Learned: If you want an exact match, go to the stone yard yourself and hand select each stone rather than sending your landscaper (who bears an odd resemblance to Salvador Dali in a trucker hat).
The rust issue actually worked itself out once the remainder of the stones were laid. I actually liked the natural variation that the rust color provides and should I change my mind, I can remove the rust with some over-the-counter products. With that problem solved, there was still the issue not having enough materials to complete the job.
Lesson Learned: The Partner sucks at counting and I am horrendous at estimating.
This miscalculation meant that the landscaper and his team needed to stop early to make a second run to the stone yard as well as the nursery. They will be back tomorrow, bright and early at 8am to power through the remainder of the tasks which include:
1) Finish laying pavers
2) Build planter box for vines
3) Patch gaps in fence
4) Lay irrigation pipes and connect to new system
5) Plant moss
Hell, I am tired just typing it and those poor saps have to do it! But then that is why I pay them, so I can only feel so bad. But I am excited at the craftmanship and progress so far….
Lesson Learned: There are moments when paying someone else to do the work is well worth it.
As I am not doing the project and merely supervising, I am looking forward to seeing what new, crazy and annoying lessons I will learn from the second phase of this project.
Fingers crossed that they can wrap up tomorrow!