Now almost two months later (since the first post about this and the temporary solution) and after many meetings these past few weeks of having “purchase gate posts, sink gate posts, build gates” on our agenda of things to do in the “urgent and important” quadrant, the gate posts were bought sometime last week and yesterday we had a day of dryness and sunk two of ten gate posts.
It turns out (after much confusion, and re-explaining of the layout to me) that there are going to be three gates two of which will be arbors with roses climbing on them, and the third will be just a gate. The arbors have four posts and cross beams between them. Once the posts are in and sunk the temporary fence of fish netting will move to be around the entire garden, rather than just one quadrant which it is how it is now. Then maybe sometime in the future when there is more money to buy materials the fencing will be wire, but fish netting will have to do for now.
Then an elaborate level structure was built to brace the posts with two cross pieces of wood at about head height and ankle height level across the path between the two posts (perfect for tripping and hitting one's head), and two diagonal stabilizing pieces of wood on one post to the north and east and the other post to the south and west. At some point in the process concrete was mixed and we were now ready to pour it.
Then we started a preliminary clean up process and realized we had lots of concrete left, thankfully Tom had a kit for making square paving stones, and we had just enough concrete to make one paver. The paver was just big enough to fit four three inch tiles in the middle.
We called Tom. When he arrived we planned and marked out where the posts should go. This involved tying back a rose bush and stringing a string across the garden to find the straightness of the future fence.
Once we were confident on the placement of the holes we started digging. We were digging with post hole diggers and a big metal rod for loosening the dirt. We alternated one person jabbing the rod into the hole and loosening the dirt with another person on the other hole with the post hole digger. Once the holes were dug we put a little bit of gravel in the holes, and started setting the posts.
Patricia designed a mosaic for the bottom while Tom, Doug and I poured the concrete for one post... Doug and I shoveling concrete and Tom down by the hole smoothing it out. Patricia and I laid out the mosaic. I went and brought back more concrete for the other post. Patricia and I mixed the rest of the concrete. Dorothy designed the second mosaic.
Meanwhile Tom, Patrica and I poured concrete to the second post using a similar process as the first post... Patricia and I shoveling and Tom leveling, and spreading. Then I laid the mosaic that Dorothy designed.
Patricia and I cleaned off the tools. Then ate a quick lunch so that we could finish cleaning all the tools away before the young ones came home from school. Now Jean can build the gates...
This is a frog living in the garden. It is about 1" long and has found a niche inside the water spigot.
A few days ago I was asked to write a blog post although I have only been here for about a week. This task got me thinking about my experiences here, and what I have learned, even in such a short time period. As part of that thought process I kept coming back to the journey that brought me here, and what I have learned so far, and how my time at this community will relate to the questions that brought me here.
I came here knowing (at least intellectually, theoretically the big pictures) about permaculture. The most exciting thing about being here is seeing these theoretic concepts in practice. The food forest is a major concept that I had heard about, read about, dreamed about how it might apply if/when I have a permaculture homestead of my own some day but here I am seeing it in action, experiencing how it works. It is also really awesome that plants and seeds particularly are categorized primarily by family then individual species within a family.
Garden bloggers are community members, volunteers and interns at Songaia.