Posts Tagged With: driveway

The Great Wall of Knight (Phase I)

If you want to cause yourself some frustration, angst and general “I’ve had it with this !&#(%@ project” feelings, just build a wall and try to get it level in three dimensions.  A project I’ve tried to get underway for the last two months finally came to fruition yesterday.  I’m wrapping the front and side of our house with a small retaining wall, behind which I will plant various flowers, shrubs and even banana trees!  I did a bit of reading about retaining walls and the most consistently repeated advice was “make sure the first course is level”.  What I did not know (until I spent several fruitless hours on my knees, cursing like a trooper) is that in order to have a level first course, one assumes that the bricks/blocks being used are of a consistent, exact shape.  This really helps.  Anyway, I set and re-set multiple bricks only to find that they were level horizontally but not front to back; or level front to back but not against the lie of the land ~ very frustrating!

Eventually I came to the realization that I was not going to be able to make a perfect wall and that once it was set, planted and settled with some rain, it would look just fine.  So I began digging a trench lined with gravel, setting the bricks of the first and second courses, filling them with gravel, re-grading the driveway and filling the bed with dirt, ready for planting.  It took quite awhile but after fifteen or twenty bricks, I started to get into the swing of it.  The wall still has a little tilt but overall it is not bad.  Bob and I moved a bunch of gravel to make the driveway look better plus we filled the space behind the retaining wall with dirt, ready for planting.

Now I just have to start the other side of the house!

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Categories: Farm stories, General interest | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Re-dress and re-grade

I re-worked the driveway in August, adding a new parking space out the front of the house, top dressing the existing driveway and adding road crush to the back section as it was mostly made of dirt and weeds! Over the last few months, the gravel has packed nicely, compacted by vehicles and rain. Some bare patches were starting to show through as the gravel settled so it was time to re-dress the existing driveway.

My tractor proved to be a huge asset with this type of project.  I had another dump truck and pup full of driveway chips which equated to hundreds of wheel-barrow loads.  Bob and I moved the gravel, graded and packed it all within a few short hours; he’s certainly earning his keep.  I was able to add gravel around our front stairs as well so the first step is now short one, rather than a great effort.  I now just have to edge the driveway and compact the gravel a bit more.  A few more rains to clear the fines and it should like great!

PS…the recent drainage projects worked like a hot damn in these recent monsoon rains!

Categories: Farm stories, General interest | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

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