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Thursday, September 3, 2009

New Garden almost done

With the weather being fabulous for gardeners, I decided to return to working on the earlier project... Building 2. As you may remember, the beds looked like this and then worse with weeds growing about 3 feet tall. It was quite the endeavor... if I say so myself!! First, we had to empty to compost bins to amend the hideous fill dirt that was used by the contractors at the job site. I wanted to borrow a backhoe to scoop out the compost, but I was not successful with coordinating with another department for staff and equipment. So, since I have 4-6 veterans working with me and I don't have to coordinate with anyone what jobs that we do ... we did it the old fashioned way. Jump into the pit (no manure), scoop out the compost, and shovel it onto the bed of a pickup. Of course, the process had to be reversed once we arrived at the job site. At the job site matters were complicated by the heigth of the high walls of the garden inside of the ramps. The compost was either dumped off of a cushman onto a tarp and then put in wheelbarrows or shovelled off of the truck. Once in the wheelbarrows, the compost was pushed up a ramp next to the wall. Then 2 guys lifted this heavy full wheelbarrow and dumped it inside the well. This took a couple of days as it is very intense work for anyone, let alone my crew of recovering addicts.

After all the compost was moved into the beds at Building 2, I borrowed an old rototiller (but it worked!!) to turn over the top layer of ground and compost!! You can see in the lower left hand of the picture that there are 3 railroad ties that are leaning up against the concrete wall. We had to push this ancient cast iron rototiller up into the bed and of course, what goes in must come out. I tried to make a yellow line on the picture delineating where the dirt was located. Today, we paced off the dimensions. I think each bed is roughly 40 feet long and 10 feet wide.

In each bed, we put 7 arborvitaes, 4 miscanthus (zebra grass) , 1 butterfly bush, and 16 Penstemon digitalis 'Husker Red' (Beardstongue). Tomorrow, we mulch. I think I will take another picture! Proud of these guys... on a mission and it was completed!

Happy Gardening.


  1. Wow! That was some job! Congratulations to all. I can't wait to see pictures of the finished garden.

  2. I'm exhausted just reading about what you all did!

  3. Thank you... I will posting the completed pictures Wednesday.