Becky H
Becky H
  • Hometalker
  • Tampa, FL

Shade garden #2: east garden


With oaks and tall wax leafted ligustrum trees, no grass would grow here; mud puddles were the norm. This is how I altered it into useful area.
Shade loving plants; turf or matt block; polymeric sand w/dwarf mondo planted in a diamond pattern along the pathway.
Shade loving plants; turf or matt block; polymeric sand w/dwarf mondo planted in a diamond pattern along the pathway.
Crepe Myrtle tree; jasmine greeting at the gated entrance.
Crepe Myrtle tree; jasmine greeting at the gated entrance.
A little sitting area among grasses, begonias and dracena, under the wax leafed ligustrum tree.
A little sitting area among grasses, begonias and dracena, under the wax leafed ligustrum tree.
Planted a living rug of dwarf mondo between the chairs and lounge.
Planted a living rug of dwarf mondo between the chairs and lounge.
Bird's Nest fern flank entry; living door matt to wipe feet before walking onto the boardwalk.
Bird's Nest fern flank entry; living door matt to wipe feet before walking onto the boardwalk.
A better view of the living rug.
A better view of the living rug.

Have a question about this project?

2 questions
  • Danesh poet
    on Dec 9, 2015

    I love this patio idea. Is there any tutorial on the entire project of the living rug?

    • Becky H
      on Dec 9, 2015

      @Danesh poet Not really. I just laid the turf block, then came back and filled the individual block cells with polymeric sand, leaving those areas I wanted dwarf mondo grass open. I bought 1/2 flat of dwarf mondo and began planting it in the patterns I wanted. The center cells of the living rug were filled with pea gravel for another texture and color.

  • Sparkles
    on Jun 19, 2016

    What kind of blocks did you use? How deep did you have to dig or did you lay them on top or the ground? How big of an area is this? How many blocks did you use? What was the cost? How did you get them level? How long did it take to do this project?

    • Becky H
      on Jun 20, 2016

      Sparkles, the block used is called turf block or mat block. It is 4" deep, and about18" x 24". Each block weighs about 40#. Just the pathway measures 25' long x 3 - 4' wide. The sitting area is 10' x 8'. It's been years now, so I really don't recall the total number of blocks used. I didn't have them delivered, rather, I bought around a dozen at a time so I wouldn't have materials sitting around, getting in the way. Most of the time I did have to do some digging, area checked with a level, to have no trip hazards and fit tightly together. If you wish to tackle an area all at once, I would suggest stakes and string to insure the area is level. I preferred to work on packed earth, so digging was done only on high points. Sand was used initially for backfill. Since I was working alone, I'd have to guess the number of hours I had into this would amount to 2 weeks. The cost is probably more than some would care to spend, but this area was useless and nasty when it rained. The blocks addressed every problem turning the area into a useful asset. Compared to the results, it was worth every penny!

    • Sparkles
      on Jun 21, 2016

      Thank you for your answer. I am wanting to build a patio and walkway and add Creeping Thyme (Walk on Me Plant) in some of the holes. Then some of the others add sea glass, colored glass beads, and colored aquarian gravel randomly.

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