Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Scary Black Foam and Other Pond Endeavors

We put it off as long as we decently could, but it was finally time to dismantle the waterfall that came with the property and rebuild it in a new, shiny, more waterproof fashion.

The three key elements for this project were:
  1. a large scrap of pond liner
  2. a lever + Matt's muscles
  3. pond foam
You can see all three (minus the muscles) in the pic below. We used the liner scrap to make a sort of diaper beneath the top layers of rock. The hope is that any water that doesn't drop straight into the pond will collect in the diaper and drain into the pond from behind the waterfall.

The waterfall rock pile, in the middle of our reconstruction efforts.

Many months ago, Bob from Draco Gardens had suggested the use of puffy foam-in-a-can to stick the rocks to the edge of the pond. It was only later that I discovered that foam-in-a-can actually comes in a special pond flavor (i.e. black) to blend in with the liner.

It's like Easy Cheese, only black!

It's useful stuff, but watching an oozy black blob suddenly erupting from within the crevices of the waterfall is a little unnerving. Reminded me of some low-budget horror film about The Thing from the Swamp (actually, I think it was Creepshow II. How the hell I know anything about Creepshow II is a mystery to me, but there it is.) Ultimately, we will need to cut off the excess foam, but we're letting it cure first.

So after putting the diaper in place and using the foam to create a channel on the main tongue of the waterfall, Matt worked on levering the massive top rock back into place. What's weird is that this actually worked. One man and a stick. Moved that giant rock several feet. Kind of amazing. Am now so unimpressed by ancient Egyptians and their weenie little pyramids.

Matt, showing the ancient Egyptians how to get stuff done

We still need to put more rocks on the waterfall tongue, cut off the extra foam, and put more foam inside the waterfall to control the water, and there are more big rocks to be levered into place somehow. Nevertheless, we're very close to having a working waterfall here. How the fish will enjoy all that water circulation and oxygenation!

At the same time that Matt was levering like mad, I was shoveling. We bought 4 cubic yards of topsoil from Bert's Dirts and 3 cu yds of crushed granite to finish off the terrace and build up the bed around the pond. Matt didn't want my help with the boulders (he seems convinced--perhaps not entirely without reason--that I would find a way to drop one of those 400-lb boulders on my own head. I'd argue the point, but I've still got a knot on my right foot from where I dropped a flagstone on myself a month ago. Ouch.) So I worked on the dirt. I shoveled about 1.5 cu yds of the soil into the new bed (will add pic later), which filled the existing part about 2/3. We still need to edge about as much space again, so there is more shoveling in my future.


7 cubic yards of stuff that needs to be shoveled. Oh my God.

But after that--more roses! Will it be the eglantine rose? 'Abraham Darby'? 'Mme Wagram'? 'Bayse's Purple'? 'White Pearl in Red Dragon's Mouth'? 'Wedding Cake'? 'Honey Dijon'? 'Tipsy Imperial Concubine'?

(Actually, I can pretty much guarantee that it will involve 'Tipsy Imperial Concubine.' That's a name too good to pass up, nevermind that it's a rather prettyish old Tea rose.)

Unrelated Addendum: Guess what's happening right now? It's raining! For the first time in over a month! I love rain!

1 comment:

Bob said...

Wow, you guys are doing such a great job on your pond. It looks so good. And who knew that Matt could kick an Egyptians butt.

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