Boulder Wall questions - dirt

grinder12000(4 now 5 I guess)October 4, 2010

My friend and I have had good success on planting a boulder wall at HOME. But we have permission from the city to beautify a boulder wall under the water tower.

The question is - are there any hints or techniques for adding better dirt to large vertical crevasses? The wall in question is seen below. There are some massive gaps. Any tricks of the trade for erosion?

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Matching plants and boulder,designing is key.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 12:17AM
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grinder12000(4 now 5 I guess)

I have no idea what point you are trying to make. We're good at what plants to use - we just are looking for dirt insertion and how to keep it from erosion until the plants are attaching it.

It's a pretty huge wall so it's a 3 or 4 year project - and remember - no water except from the sky!

    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 11:44AM
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Well, Ron, you have yourselves quite a project! I gained a better understanding of the situation once I found your blog with more details. The following experienced thoughts come to mind which may or may not be helpful.

1. Although you know suitable plants for this situation, none of them will choke weed growth and hand weeding will always be necessary.

2. It might be a good idea to add either bags of pine bark mulch or wood chips provided by a friendly arborist to your soil mixture. These will help to hold the soil and moisture breaking down slowly over the years as all stabilizes. Would urge you to do this.

3. It has been my experience that in the winter mice find this type of environment a cozy home, tunneling under the rocks and eating the roots of plants killing them. Hopefully you will avoid this problem.

4. Plant tight to rocks. This will encourage roots to grow down and under rocks seeking moisture which is usually trapped there. Also, the roots growing under rocks are protected from your harsh winters and will live to grow another year.

5. I like your planting plan as outlined on your blog. Good luck with this community project. Keep us posted, please, as your work progresses.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 3:01PM
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I understand your problem,finishing your task is some difficult expensive,I haven't any good way make it be aesthetic.
It is more easy renew to do your wall,first layer stone,second dirt,third shrub,fourth dirt...lay water faucet on the wall,make shrub root moisture.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2010 at 8:27PM
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grinder12000(4 now 5 I guess)

Are you talking about this blog??

Here is a link that might be useful: Two Guys and a Beer LAndscaping

    Bookmark   October 6, 2010 at 3:17PM
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Yes, that is the blog. I refrained from posting it hoping that some would poke around your site and blogs enjoying the photography and written words. It is always fun to find those who enjoy this world of dirt and gardening.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2010 at 4:32PM
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That looks frighteningly unstable. My fear would be that if you did work on that and it failed, you could be blamed for it. I would not touch that with a 10 pole.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2010 at 7:37AM
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karinl(BC Z8)

By hand with small tools, gap by gap, to answer your primary question.

Or you dump buckets-full along the top portion and sweep or let rain wash the rest down (works around here!). But on city property you probably can't have an interim ugly stage.

Per Laag: where do the rocks go if the wall fails??


    Bookmark   October 7, 2010 at 10:50AM
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grinder12000(4 now 5 I guess)

LOL - I love you guys! I did think that after pulling weeds the whole thing might tumble.

I agree one crevice at a time. The plan is to fill one vain with dirt and fill it with some Dianthus deltoides or the like. Those things are awesome.

I also have to disagree a little about weeds. In my smaller version of the wall I have and zero weeds where I have planted ground cover.

No mouse or varmint holes that I found. The odd thing is that on that hill the water table is actually close to the ground!! It's a strange area for water and sadly - not one outdoor faucet on that water tower.

I know this is not a garden photo but . . .

    Bookmark   October 7, 2010 at 11:17AM
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missingtheobvious(Blue Ridge 7a)

I know this is not a garden photo

On the contrary! It's clearly a mushroom, and mushrooms are found in gardens (I saw several in my front lawn just this morning).

The gills are so crowded they're not easily discernible. Very tall stem with extremely unusual veil girdles. Can't tell what variety it is without being able to see the top of the cap.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2010 at 8:00PM
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