Monday, April 11, 2011

Garden Structures: The gazebo in the hill

"It is easier to go down a hill than up, but the view is best from the top."
- Arnold Bennett

The hill is the highest point in the farm. It accords a view of the river below and the valley beyond. In the afternoon while the rest of the farm is exposed to the heat of the sun, there is a refreshingly cool breeze that blows gently in this area. The river below must have a cooling effect on this gentle wind as it crosses this body of water on its way up the hill.

It's so nice to spend the rest of the afternoon in this area if only there's a shady place to stay under, like some leafy trees perhaps. However, only Cogon grass and other weeds grow here. Early last year we built a small and crude tin-roofed hut. This temporarily solved the shade problem. Unfortunately months later a passing storm carried the hut away.

The hilltop view, a new temporary gazebo and some newly installed plants.

The simple gazebo in these pictures was not originally a gazebo. It was recycled from parts of the structure that used to house the goats after they were relocated to their new and better house. When the nasty October storm pummeled the farm, it destroyed this abandoned goat's house but luckily it left the roof intact.

The hilltop cleared of the Cogon grass that dominates the place.

Since the crude hut at the hill is gone and there is this perfectly good roof that has no use at the moment, my father thought of using it to build a new shelter to replace the old hut that seemed to have suddenly vanished into thin air.

New plants on the slope of the hill. More will be planted soon to make this a 'greener' place.

After the structure has been erected, the surrounding area was groomed with plants from the nursery and some of the plants that were removed from the entrance to the farm when the landscaping there was completely redone. More plants will be installed soon and hopefully stunt the growth of the Cogon grass.

And what is a gazebo without a place to sit on? The wooden chairs below were just sitting in the storage so why not use them instead. They need a bit of refinishing but since this is the outdoors their weathered look fits perfectly with the surroundings.

An old Narra furniture set from the storage.

All in all, I consider this project "eco-friendly" in that the materials used were all recycled, from the roof down to the furnitures, and even the plants.

What I'm afraid of is that this structure might get blown away again once another strong storm comes. It's the wind that would actually cause more damage than the rain. I have something else in mind that should solve this problem, a different type of gazebo that can be "folded" whenever necessity dictates it. But the rainy season is still a couple of months away so for now this structure will do.
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