Project 101 – Week Three

It has been a few weeks since I reported on progress on my day lily relocation project. It has turned into more of a hillside renovation than a day lily retreat and so far it has consumed dozens of hours of sweat-dripping labor, 4 1/2 tons of stone, two pallets of concrete landscaping blocks, and a dozen bags of smaller egg stone and pea gravel. I have encountered ant nests, unknown weeds of enormous root strength, loose sandy soil, and hard as concrete red and orange clay. As a reminder, here is a photo of the original bank which until now has defied all taming since we moved in to the new home over a year ago.

Today, it looks much different as I have mastered the art of block leveling and rock placement. Other flowers have joyfully joined the original day lilies and a special buy on Mexican pottery globes adds a splash of color.

Where I am today.

Each of the 10 to 25 pound rocks was individually positioned to add gravitational stability as well as erosion stopping capability. Egg sized round gravel was then used to buffer and fill holes between rocks plus add to the aesthetic appeal. Four different kinds of small rocks were used – calico rocks for some color, egg rocks for texture and support, pea gravel for small crevasses, and black palm sized rock for contrast. In the flatter areas, after first clearing grass and mostly weeds, I laid down cardboard to smother emerging weeds and filled crevasses between rocks with sand for more dirt stopping power. Here’s a detail photo.

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Note the different sized rock. Theere are four different kinds.

My grand kids helped with some plantings and rock placement but were mostly enthralled with rock-climbing!

Skylar helps plant Marigolds on the top tier.

Raden carefully places a ten pound rock!

Raden and Logan scamper up the creek bed.

Am I finished? Absolutely not! In addition to populating the terraces with day lilies and other botanical subjects, I have to expand the project to the right around the shed and to the left around the pergola.

On the left, I am starting a wall but run into an ant bed.

On the right, it is much steeper as the hill winds around my shed.

One last look at the nearly finished center portion. Not bad for an old man!

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