Around the Dam
If you drove up our street past the drive you couldn’t actually see the house. It was below the level of the land. You can imagine what could happen in the event of heavy rain. So Peter had put in a small dam, and drainage channels to conduct excess water away from the house. This quite large area above the house was never developed and never used. One reason was that really open areas are never used, by anybody. We didn’t have any fences except between us and our immediate neighbour to the West, who had horses. We didn’t need a fence, since we had no domestic pets, so we planted a hedge (photinia robusta), fast-growing to about three metres. It has a gorgeous flush of red foliage in Spring.
Then one day as we were on our way to Ballarat for a leisurely breakfast, we noticed a new servo was being built on the Western Highway. The site was solid rock and the builders had blasted out tonnes of rocks and placed them in a pile. An opportunity! Over several weekends Pete and I went to the site and filled the trailer with rocks to cover the dam wall. That way, it no longer needed mowing.
The end result was beautiful, as well as practical
In his previous tenure at Greendale Pete had planted three gum trees up in that top paddock that were now well-established. Now we’d provided privacy with the hedge, we built a little arbor incorporating the trees, and overlooking the dam. By then the dam was empty because of the drought – but weather changes.
Next time I’ll tell you about the shade house.