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First landscaping project. Give me some confidence, please.

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by hoofy, Sep 12, 2018 at 10:22 AM.

  1. hoofy

    hoofy Apprentice Gardener

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    My girlfriend has mobility issues so I really need to sort out the back of the house so she can get to the garden in her mobility scooter. All I'm trying to do is build a ramp, really, as the ground drops about 30 inches over the 15 feet I'm trying to sort out.

    [​IMG]

    The plan is to remove the area between the drive, top left, the cabin, right, and the area of lawn.

    I'm thinking of building a small wall up against the hedge that would go from the top, just to the left of the green water butt, and then drop down in stages to where the front of the cabin is. Then a six foot wide slope of concrete as the ramp with a small wall this side of the ramp just to keep it looking even. The nearest wall would have a gap at the top to access a set of semi circular steps that would run between the wall of the house and the new wall of the ramp and would drop down to the lawn. There would also be a gap at the bottom of the nearest wall, in front of the cabin, to allow access to the garden.

    I found a picture online of how the steps might look, which I think looks really smart.

    [​IMG]

    The reason I'm thinking of having the ramp six feet (ish) wide is with a view to getting a machine into the garden if I ever need to and also a car could get to the back of the house should anyone ever want to tinker in a workshop/cabin in the future.

    I've had a quote of almost £3000 for a landscaper to do the job, but before I go ahead, I thought it might be worth just asking for thoughts on the project.
     
  2. Tetters

    Tetters Total Gardener

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    A DIY job will cost you a hell of a lot less @hoofy . When my husband was alive, he had mobility problems as well, so have dealt with this sort of thing too.
    Using one of those hefty road worthy scooters needed pathways to be straightforward without any sharp curves - also as gradual as possible. I actually found that 'having a go' on the scooter myself gave a better idea of how pathways needed to be.
    Once you have the area cleared, it may be an idea to concentrate on the shape of the slope first - and as you have already said, make it wide enough to be serviceable, and then add the posh bits afterwards.
    Easier maybe to envisage the finished job if you leave an open mind to start with - you will find that you will have a better idea of the finished result that way????

    Please could you show us your progress - it is going to be an interesting project, and your girlfriend will benefit a great deal when you have done it :dbgrtmb:
     
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    • hoofy

      hoofy Apprentice Gardener

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      Thanks.

      I'm really too busy to do the job myself, although I would like to have a go. I like a project, but this one is not for me.

      I was worried about the slope being too steep, but I shunted her scooter around the corner to where there is currently a narrow concrete slope and it managed that without a problem, so it should be fine over a longer run. As long as she doesn't try to turn too quickly when she gets to the bottom.

      The landscaper I've chosen is booked up until February, so don't hold your breath for the updates.:)
       
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      • mazambo

        mazambo Gardener

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        I see where your hedge question comes in now hoofy, obviously the longer the ramp the easier the gradient, as Tetters says diy will save you a packet, maybe make a start see where it takes you and when you feel you're done get someone to finish it for you, easier said than done I know, often had those times over the years where personally it just seemed when I had time I didn't have the funds and when I did have the funds I didn't have the time but such is life! I Iove the steps, when I see something like that my mind starts whizzing, ooh that would look nice down the bottom corner or over that side, better stop or else I'll be outside digging, look forward to seeing things moving toward however long it takes.
         
      • hoofy

        hoofy Apprentice Gardener

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        I did make a start this evening by moving a couple of plants out of the condemned area into a bed further down the garden. I still have no thoughts on tackling the rest though, I have plenty of other stuff I need to get on with before the weather gets cold.
         
      • Mike Allen

        Mike Allen Gardener

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        I experienced mobility problems some years ago. Valerie had bought me a mobility scooter, she also used it. Being council tenants, we asked the council for help. { A point worth remembering, the local council will often get involved even if you own the property. Worth making enquiries} Our request to the council was for a shed to store the scooter in. As my home is end of terrace and the front door is at the side, it is also opposite next doors front door. Communal path was too narrow, for the ramp. We ended up with a pucker brick built storage including electric, joined to the main building. Your project is somewhat different agreed, but mention of help from the local council might be worth looking into.

        I have done a Google search at. Guidlines for ramp construction for disability scooter.

        There is quite a lot of information that may be of help. I wish you all the best, and if I may. Perhaps a loving thought for your girlfriend. Try and help her to see, she is NOT A PROBLEM, it is so easy for disabled folk to feel, they are in the way. All the very best.
         
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        • ricky101

          ricky101 Super Gardener

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          Hi,

          Your width of 6ft for a car is rather optimistic, a typical garage door is 7ft and that only lets a small to medium car through with wing mirrors folded.

          They now suggest 8ft is a better width, but that still only allows the car though, opening the doors needs a lot more space.
           
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          • hoofy

            hoofy Apprentice Gardener

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            Thank you for the advice @Mike Allen about getting help from the council but the situation isn't quite straight forward.

            I own the house, a lovely bungalow with a nice big private garden. My 80 year old mother lives on her own at the house and hopefully will do for the rest of her life. The plan is that eventually myself and my gf will live there, so the plan is mainly for the future, but the ramp will be useful straight away when we visit. Also my mum may well need it if she starts to have mobility issues. The planned steps to the side of the ramp will be better for my mother than what is there now, especially when there's a handrail too.

            Looking at what's there now, something needs doing with it, so that's what I've come up with.

            @ricky101 I haven't really thought the car access through yet, I need to get a tape measure out. The plan will remain the same though. If a car won't get down, then it won't get down. Might be handy if it would though. It's not the main consideration, just a possible added benefit.:)

            I have thought that when I do get my tape measure out, if a car won't go down, I might make the ramp narrower, maybe 5 foot or less. The main consideration then would be how much room I might need to get a small digger etc down there.
             
            Last edited: Sep 14, 2018 at 11:20 AM

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