The Future is Insight

The title of this blog works on many levels- it plays off of my belief in hybrids being a critical step towards our future, the fact that introspection and mindful planning are critical to our future, and that the future is literally in sight for those that are willing to see it. Here I chronicle my attempt to Be the Change I wish to see in the world-and to help make that Future a Reality.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Mending Wall

“…And some are loaves and some so nearly balls
We have to use a spell to make them balance:
'Stay where you are until our backs are turned!'
We wear our fingers rough with handling them.
Oh, just another kind of out-door game...”
-Robert Frost, Mending Wall

Sometime during my June spent digging up sod along our Back 40 (OK its really a back 12’), and lining our raised beds with field stone, I conjured up a terraced garden scheme to double the amount of cultivated space in my garden and make use of the slope up to the DOT Fence along I-94. Putting in timber seemed wasteful and railroad ties are so full of nastiness that they were never considered. The biggest hang up was not so much that I have never built a rock wall, but in the acquiring the rocks and their transport. Until proven wrong I will believe that I can build anything with the right tools and a book. So all summer I have pestered my more rural friends for sources of cheap (ok: free) field stone from a farmer they know-and I got several leads. So last week when we got the trailer I set a date for the stone hunt for this morning. Other than the incredible weight of stone: a cubic feet of stone is 100lbs and those corner stones are the better part of 2 cubic feet, this project was amazingly easy. I had prepped the ground with a very rough grade several weeks ago so today all I did was cut the wall footing out with a flat spade and then play some Real World Tetris. Total time from when we left the house this morning to the picture above was 6 hours-including drive time, lunch, and a few hours of gabbing with the buddy who gave me the stone. However, considering each stone was lifted by hand 4 times I doubt I will be able to move tomorrow. I had figured I would need to use mortar, but it turns out that rubble retaining walls are a breeze. If I had gone another course I would have probably mortared it for stability, but the clay I packed in should hold it. Next weekend I will do another run and terrace in the garden above this one, but the progress is heartening!


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At 6:03 PM, Blogger Mia said...

I have to say: I am very, very impressed. It looks so great!


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