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Spring 2005--10 Months after Hurrican Ivan

We have been living on what looks like a moonscape after removing the remains of several other people's homes from our property.

Finally we are digging out the rest of the buried debris, taking down dead trees, getting a nice new grade on the property and 40 pallets of St. Augustine grass sod.

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Our yard for the last 10 months after Hurricane Ivan and the removal of the massive amounts of debris

Hurricane IVAN so destroyed the evergreen native plant hedgerow between our property and the new subdivision going in on the former site of a single residence, that it had to be all ripped out. Some wax myrtle is coming back from the roots (a good thing) and we have planted the most salt tolerant and fastest growing things we could find, along with muscadine cultivars on the chain link fence. Our property has looked like a moonscape for 10 months, but at last we are going to have a better lawn than ever. In the last two days we have brought in 1 load of sand, &  10  loads of topsoil, and 40 pallets of grass. Our tractor driver, Bill Ray, and his two Mexican helpers, has taken down two big trees that died as a result of Hurricane Ivan in the front and lots of smaller ones in the back.
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They took down the really tall old pine first. I hated to see it go as it looked like an old Italian pine to me.

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It only made sense to take the tall one down now before houses get built next door. It was leaning into that property and would have required a crane if the property were not vacant--they plan to squeeze 10 houses in next door !

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We now have this smooth friable bed of soil for our grass to grown roots into.

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The area behind our place used to be dark and shady. No grass would grow and the ground was covered in pine needles year 'round. Now it is wide open and sunny so we sodded most it. Part is left gravel where it connects to the driveway.

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Lots of sod left to lay---I just don't know what we'd do without our Mexican helpers.
They are hard workers and pleasant guys to have around. I am sore from head to toe, but getting tan !


We had gotten two bids to have our yard repaired and both of them were shocking. The first was around $14,000 and second one came in at $18,000. These prices didn't include the gravel for the driveway either...nothing fancy, no irrigation, no shrubs, just grass. So we couldn't agree to that !!! What we ARE doing---This do it yourself, with help, method will be much more affordable, but includes some very sore upper arms :o)
We know that St. Augustine is not the cheapest grass, but we think the extra expense over Centipede is worth it. After about 5 phone calls to sod farms, only to be told by many that it would be late May or late June before we could get any, I was thrilled that RiverView Turf of Foley said they would cut and deliver 40 pallets for us that same day !! And the matched the best price I had gotten elsewhere.

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