Archeological dig

deervssteve(9)March 14, 2013

I started digging the three holes for the bare roots that arrived yesterday. Planting instructions say 24" deep and 18" wide. I'm digging in adobe and I'm not the man I use to be. I'll try to make it to 20". It is pretty difficult to get much beyond that with a shovel and I don't remember going much more than 18" in the past. I've come across roots an inch in diameter, remnants of a palm tree and embedded rocks. I have no idea where the root came from. I'm glad I'm digging one day and planting another.

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poorbutroserich(Nashville 7a)

I feel your pain! I'm digging in clay. I live in the home my grandfather built in 1928. I've found some old marble's of my dad's and a glass toy choo choo candy container--a few old "remedy" bottles...
I love finding rocks to add to the garden.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 6:02PM
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seil zone 6b MI

Don't work too hard, deer, and be careful. Don't want to wreck yourself so early in the season.

It's interesting the things that turn up when digging. Mostly I find bricks in my yard but I have found keys too.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 7:23PM
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It's worth it. Take your time and think about all the roses your hard work will bring.

I buy marbles and throw them out into the garden so when I weed I will find them. Then I throw them in another direction for another day. I also have shells out there. Abalone and other pearly shells are always pretty.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 12:45AM
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I am so thankful I'm "mostly" on sand. 90% of the roses are in the sand beds, and a big hole takes about 5 minutes to dig. But the fruit trees, they are in a heavy rock area where I have to take a pick axe to them, and work on the hole for about an hour a time, for a few days in a row to get a plantable hole. I don't envy you guys that have to do that all the time.

The sand is a strange "thing" collector. I've found lots of old child toys (little plastic cars, animals), then pieces of broken off tools, pieces of broken glass, and just some odd things to find below the earth. Some of them are kinda creepy - finding a piece of a doll 2 foot under is just not right.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 9:53AM
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Well, I guess my terrible sand does have one advantage. This place was woods and pasture when we bought it, and never had a home on it. The only thing I find when digging rose holes are shell casings and the occasional animal bone.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 10:14AM
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peachymomo(Ca 8)

I've found all sorts of interesting things digging at my Mother's house. I'm not sure how old it is but I do know that they had a still at the bottom of the field during Prohibition, so pretty old. I've found countless rusted up bits of metal, most are obviously parts of old tools, but I've also found chain, concrete, lots of old glass, and even bits of electrical wire and other oddities. Digging there is always an adventure, I've started collecting the pieces I find most interesting.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 11:24AM
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In the back of our property there is a huge old concrete structure that used to be an incinerator, and was used to burn garbage for decades, starting about the turn of the 20th century. It has been re-habbed by my DH into a thing to make compost in, and that works great. Anyway, around it in that part of the garden when we dug we have found numerous small bottles (perfume, medicine, etc) - mostly intact, and old spoons, and some strange bits of metal (which, unlike the bottles, of course are mostly rusted away).


    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 12:05PM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

My dad was a "collector", he brought home all kinds of things he found and would then put them some place in the garden. The chickens would do some digging, the trees would drop some leaves and magically, stuff vanished.

He also liked "add iron to the soil" by throwing random metal things he picked up around the garden. And he always had one of those cheap plastic combs in his pocket.

While doing the first clean up of the front yard, I found 2 sinks, a faucet, a wrench, the under sink plumbing and about a dozen cheap plastic combs.

What is most curious is the volume of broken glass we find at one end of the property. I could fill trash cans with it all. At one time, there was a very poor family living next door, they could not afford to have their trash removed...I think we got a lot of her glass. And on the other side the neighbors and my dad had issues...guessing they tossed a lot of beer bottles our way. We leave buckets around so we can pick up glass as the chickens unearth it.

Best find, an old cast iron sort of intact piggy bank.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 12:12PM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

We found a couple of silver spoons!


    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 1:14PM
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Yep, the archeological dig. I know it well.

The best finds:
two indian head pennies, one from 1890 and the other from1897

One token from the Philadelphia Transit Company, not sure how old but pretty old from what I could research. Maybe second incarnation? Maybe first, I can't remember.

A piece of a conductors pin from said transit company

A quarter-sized token marked "Young and McShea's Merry go Round, Atlantic City". It is hard rubber and looks just like the one on this page, fourth token down. Dates somewhere in the late 1880's. The pier changed names to just Young's in the 1990's and burned down in 1912.

I guess that was the best find.

Last year I dug up a metal wagon wheel. I put it on the porch with, oddly enough, it's exact matching twin, that had been moved here by another tenant when they moved in. Go figure. I think they need to be made into some type of structure for a small climbing rose.

I am still looking for the pot of gold. I'll let you know when I find it.

Isn't this the board where someone linked to the car they had dug up in their yard?

Here is a link that might be useful: Young & McSheaĆ¢s Amusement Company carousel

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 1:44PM
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poorbutroserich(Nashville 7a)

Kippy, I wish I could've met your Dad! I'm going to start scattering marbles too!
Thanks everyone for sharing your treasure trove. Jeri, what did you do with the spoons?

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 4:18PM
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I agree on the glass part, too, Kippy. When I first started digging here I was sure no one living here had ever thrown out anything glass, other than in the yard.

After digging so much up, I wished I would have weighed it all!

oh, and I meant to say the pier changed names in 1890's not 1990's! Easy enough to have figured out though! :)

I found a bunch of marbles, too. A couple nice shooters, even! :)

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 5:12PM
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A very old hand forge mule shoe.

A Tennessee car license plate from the 1920s.

Multiple pieces of broken pottery that found their way over from the from the antebellum house next door.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2013 at 8:49PM
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annesfbay(9b Sunset 15)

Fortune cookies in their plastic wrappers--dozens of them. What is up with that?!


    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 1:23PM
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