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London Cottage Garden No more power washing brick paving – did it work ?? -London Cottage Garden

    London Cottage Garden No more power washing brick paving - did it work ??  -London Cottage Garden

    July 28th, 2021 – Tips and inspiration



    I wrote rather smugly about power washing brick paving in my last blog here. I was no longer going to use the power washer on the paving in the back garden. When it’s washed it looks lovely, like this

    power washed brick paving

    Isn’t it lovely

    When it’s left to the sun and rain to do the job, it looks like this

    power washing brick paving

    Paving as Nature intended

    Time for action

    It hadn’t been power washed for 18 months. I’d grown to accept the “natural” look. Aka “the lazy look.”

    I didn’t want to disturb the little creatures that love the mud and moss. (Brownie points). I didn’t want to lose the cute self-seeded daisies and poppies that came up in the gaps. (I’m so eco friendly). I didn’t want to annoy the neighbors with the awful noise it makes. (I’m such a nice person) It’s SUCH a waste of water. (Must be responsible) blah blah

    I was learning to live with the slightly black slightly slimy bricks but after the rain came recently the paving turned into a death defying ice rink. The grass which had self-seeded in the gaps between the bricks had grown and was now very slippery as well as Nature doing her thing.

    slippery brick paving

    Black and very slimy

    Monty Don on Gardeners World also had slimy slippery brick paths which he dealt with by brushing really hard with sharp sand. He said it was very hard work but I was inspired.

    Act before you think

    So yesterday, without any sharp sand but with a spring in my step, I began scrubbing, sweeping, brushing, washing, and had transformed a patch the size of a tea towel by lunchtime. There was a lot of sweating, three pairs of shoes soaked, swearing, and splashing.

    At 2pm I finally cracked.

    I got the Karcher out. That fiendish instrument of the Devil.

    back garden paving

    Can you spot it at the end of the garden?

    I wished I’d used it from the start.

    I blasted those little creepy crawlies to oblivion. I smashed those daisies out of their foothold. I was ruthless. If the neighbors were shouting “hypocrite!” I didn’t hear it because of the noise I was making.

    But even with the targeted blaster, the grasses in the cracks wouldn’t budge so after I’d soaked them I had to bend down like a medieval peasant and pull out every grass seedling by hand.

    I didn’t manage them all. Some wouldn’t budge, even being winkled with a knife.

    Grass hanging on in there in the cracks

    And with gaps like this between the bricks I’ll never be free of slippery weeds.

    old stock bricks

    Gaps where the mortar used to be

    Originally there was mortar between the bricks but it must have got blasted out by ……. I think I’ll just stop there.

    Moral of this tale

    – when you feel like being a clever clogs “Miss-can’t-tell-her-anything” snooty smug pants – just keep it zipped.

    Thank you for reading and if you’d like my monthly blogs to pop into your inbox please leave your email in the box at the top.

    Happy Gardening and best wishes, Julie


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