When we bought this house nearly five years ago one of the things that impressed us was the back deck. It was large! We could have a whole party out there. We forgot two small facts. For one, we are not “party” people. For another, there are only three real seasons in Idaho: too cold to go outside, too wet and windy to go outside, and too hot to go outside.
Needless to say, our deck has not had a lot of use in five years. Since I lost my job last year we started joking about all that wasted space, and that perhaps we should cut holes in the deck and turn some of it into planter boxes or something. The joking began to turn serious. A few weeks ago we decided it was time to get rid of the deck. We need the space for more garden, and can make do with a much smaller outside sitting space. It was time to dismantle the deck.
Let me just start by saying that the deck was added well after the house was initially built. Whomever built it did a much better job than the company that built our house. This deck was designed to last! I’m fully confident we could put our upright grand piano on it with no worry about it breaking the deck at all.
Of course this means that tearing down the deck has been a slow process. Not that I’ve had much time to devote to it, but even with the time I’ve had it seems as if I’m making no progress. I had to start by cutting through the decking boards to expose the structure underneath to get an understanding of how it’s built. Then I had to figure out how to remove the railing without destroying the flower beds and sprinkler riser around the outside of it. It sometimes feels like dismantling a ship in a bottle. But I am making some headway.
We’re still holding on to hope that I’ll have the deck taken down and the new garden beds put in while there is still time to plant something. But then it’s already mid-May, and I’ve only got the rails and a tenth of the deck down. Tomorrow I will devote most of the day to it. That will probably be my “make-or-break” day. Our future gardening efforts hang in the balance!
I’ll post more as the project progresses.