Gardening adventures,  Heirloom Plants,  Permaculture and Edible Forest Gardening Adventures,  Ponds,  Soil

Finishing Flagstone

The task this morning: move and place flagstone and dirt.

Today I finished cleaning up the disaster that I made when I dug out my upper pond (see Reponding).   There have been piles of dirt, stacks of flagstones and rocks, and mess everywhere for two months too many.  The reponding project is still not a complete success as the decomposed granite mixed with clay soil allows seepage in the pond.  I have to keep filling it up, but at least it is with well water, and eventually I believe it will seal.

My faithful hound growing bored waiting for me past the heirloom daffodils.

I didn’t want or need the same flagstone surround that I previously had holding down and covering the pond liner.  I wanted a more natural look, but yet I had all this flagstone!  So I completed the walkway around the pond, adding some overhanging flagstone under which the Pacific Chorus frogs may hide. One jumped out indignantly when I moved a rock.  I did a little planting, and Jacob began to plant aquatic plants now that the season is beginning and transplants are possible.  I found that the pond was full of mosquito larvae, and much to my surprise and joy, tadpoles!  More mosquito fish were added.  They are now lolling around groaning and holding their fishy stomachs with all the larvae they have (and still have to) eat.

Moist soil and a tangle of flowers and weeds... magical.

I made flagstone stairs through the overgrown embankment, for access to the bird feeders.  The grass, borage, daffodils, weeds and wildflowers are so dense in there that as I was kneeling in the moist dark soil I felt as if I were in a Beatrix Potter book, or some other English garden story.  It was magical and redolent of springtime.

A pathway up through an English children's story.

When I finally placed or stored all the flagstone, I had great piles of dirt to contend with.  Some I carried in buckets over to the side yard where I’d placed some flagstones. That got old pretty fast.  I only carried them full twice, then only filled them 3/4 full for the rest of the trips.  My arms are a little longer now. I really didn’t want to haul wagonfulls of dirt down to the lower property again, so I stood and thought about what I could do.  Then I spotted leftover scalloped edging bricks and decided to use them  and the soil to make another garden bed.  Why not?  I can always take it out. It sure beat hauling all that dirt out of there this afternoon!

Have extra dirt and edgers? Make a new bed!

Finally I was able to plant some herbs and flowers I’d purchased for this area.  Violas and violets, two of my favorites!  I’ll plant seeds another day. I’m hoping all this newly moved dirt won’t wash into the pond when we have our predicted heavy rain this weekend.  Maybe I’ll cover the new beds, just in case.

Violets and violas... big favs.

I watered everything in, which caused mud to scum up the newly swept flagstones (grrr!), filled the bird feeders (it is Project Feederwatch count days Thurs. and Fri.), and closed the gate on this project (for now!).  Once again, I shall have no trouble getting to sleep, but probably some trouble getting up in the morning!

A touch of flagstone and rock; plants will fill in.



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