Amanda and I have had some big visions for our backyard, which looked just short of a landfill when we first bought the house. I had already done the tilling and landscape shaping, so this weekend (a few weeks back now) was all about filling in the beds. My objective was to shovel four cubic yards (Read: back pain) of dirt from the blue-tarp throne in front of my garage to various garden beds in my backyard.
The dirt was literally crap. We used the City of Tacoma's own TAGRO -- "a blend of City of Tacoma Class A Biosolids—the EPA’s highest rating— highly screened sawdust and other gardening elements." Did you read "biosolids" in that sentence? It's nothing new to use "manure" in your yard, but when you have to market "biosolids" you're not talking manure. You're talking about people poop. Upon learning this fact, Sergio freaked out and protested the use of crap in the yard, which the cat rebutted by using a nearby flower bed as a toilet. Point goes to the cat.
Regardless of the mix or the smell -- oy, the smell -- the TAGRO was dirt cheap (get it?!). I paid $50 to have the crap (get it?!) delivered to the house. That's easily one-third the price of dirt with less quality crap in it. Whoever said Tacoma doesn't have competitive city services doesn't know about how the city delivers crap for cheap!
I don't know much about lemmings except for the video game, but what I recall is that the lemmings all followed each other back and forth in a monotonous way and would follow each other off a cliff if you'd let them. That's what the work felt like, Amanda and I walking back and forth from the dirt pile to the backyard, shoveling and dumping, shoveling and dumping.
It took a full day, but we got the job done and in plenty of time to get some planting done, including in Amanda's new planter box!