April 2, 2012

Grunt work and bribery... (New Lawn Part 2)

Farmer Joe modelling the Australian Farmer's uniform... Blue work shorts, blue singlet.
Farmer Joe says that every major renovation job has a point of "rock bottom" - when you are so mentally and physically exhausted that you'd almost rather move house than finish the work. Well, raking up dead Kikuyu runners did it for me last week (above). Kikuyu was popular for lawns in the 1970's and 80's, but is now a noxious weed in agricultural areas, so all the runners had to be gathered up and burnt.

With the hated Kikuyu eventually disposed of, Farmer Joe dug trenches for the new automatic pop-up sprinkler system, and Farmer Sim arrived to help with the plumbing and electrical work...

Farmer Joe and Farmer Sim discussing the finer points of lawn irrigation infrastructure
There is a very simple trick to recruiting (and retaining) volunteer labour... just the right amounts of food and beer. Too little and your workforce will head home by lunch time, too much and your working bee will degrade into a casual weekend boy's hangout. We must have got the balance just right, because by yesterday afternoon, the sprinklers were operational, and the boys were gleefully spreading new lawn plugs...

This morning my whole body aches and my arms are like jelly, but the job is done. And I couldn't help but smile when a startled Farmer Joe cried out "What the hell is that noise?" when the sprinklers popped up automatically at 6.00am...


  1. I am so glad you got lots done <3

    You are so lucky to have such great friends <3

    The jelly-like feeling in your arms will go away in a matter of days... But your lawn will be there for you to enjoy for a very long time.

    Can't wait til we get to the lawn stage, although ours is teeny tiny compared how much you guys have :)

    Have a great Monday!!!


  2. I bow down to you both! I moan about having to do the weeding in my garden that is literally 1/20th the size of yours (I bribe myself with doritos and beer!) And at least you know the sprinkler system works now! :)

  3. Haha it's almost theatrical Farmer J & Sim throwing out the lawn plugs in matching king G work shirts! haha love it!

  4. Its coming along nicely! I do love that feeling of accomplishment after a long hard weekend. Keep us updated, I can't wait to see the progress!

  5. What a huge lawn... how nice! Can't wait to see more...


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