Sunday, 28 April 2013

How to Build An Amazing Stone wall!

DH has been planning all winter. I asked about raised beds for my vegetable garden, thinking a nice wooden border would tidy things up a bit. I was thinking of going to the junkyard and picking up some used 2x10's. To replace the junks of scrap I had used last year. Like this.


Well if I was thinking that way I should have kept my mouth shut and done it myself. My man likes to do things up proud, and this is no exception. The man is a frickin' genius, and he had a dream.

First you get 2 sheets of 3/4" plywood and a handful of 2x4's and build forms. 

No! No! First you spend hours and hours planning, scribbling notes, measuring dirt piles, confusing the wife with questions and details. The dreaming stage goes on for a very long time. It leads to better implementation though, I've found. Here he is percolating in the chairs he built me for Christmas.

Then off to the quarry (it's just next door) and return with 3 piles of sand, gravel and pretty rocks. 

Now you place a layer of sand in the bottom of the form and pat it down by hand. It should be about 3/4" thick. 

Then wash off the pretty rocks and carefully place then, 1 at a time, in the sand - just like a jigsaw puzzle. Wiggle each rock in place so it's downward face is snuggled in the sand where the concrete can't get to it.

Add some steel mesh for luck.

Mix 2 wheelbarrows full of concrete and gently pour them on top of the rocks. Tap gently with a chunk of 2x4 to settle the gravel into the soup.

Wait a day. Tip the form over (while praying and swearing, both at the same time). The form pops off, more or less. Hold your breath, as you really don't have a clue if things worked out. Brush off the sand layer....

And behold! An amazing section of garden wall! Ready to be strapped to it's partners (metal straps have been designed, ordered and await). 

Do you like the rock layout? That was my contribution. I have 4 done, 12 more to go. One rock at a time. However I'm not the one who has to wrestle the walls into position. The man has a plan for that too. Can't wait.