They Say That Granite Rings - Xeriscaping in the Postnuclear Free-World

Discussion in 'General Off Topic Forums' started by mfrench, Oct 9, 2014.

  1. SoCal Sam

    SoCal Sam Lunatic Member

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    Fortunately, I don't have to deal with hillside runoff except in extreme 100 year rain events and even then, it is not that much. Did the rim for my house as well. There is no open ground around my house. Drains all the way to the street.

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  2. mfrench

    mfrench Addicted Member

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    By the looks of the weather charts, I might get to see my "dry creek" complex do its thing this afternoon. We're now saturated deeply enough to call saturated. So, if we get anything in excess of an inch an hour right now, we'll start flowing. I'm actually looking forward to this, as I've spent so much time building up the fortifications. I have two new layers of dry creek terracing with heavy granite blocks, backed with large scale gravel. The steps in the terrace level the flows a wee bit, and finally relaease them at a point where the slope lessens naturally.
    anticipation!
     
  3. mfrench

    mfrench Addicted Member

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    And, in a focused effort, *certain things were removed, things backfilled an leveled up, and, a thick layer of mulch applied over bare soil, finishing just as the rains wetted the driveway enough to no longer be bale to measure the distance between rain drops,...
    DSCN5767 copy.jpg
    * fugly silver pipe met 4.5" angle grinder

    And, I actually ran out of rocks; first time ever here!
    I'm tapering down into a graded level dry creek that is getting armor plated with rocks, such that, if they ever need to open their relief valve, and I get water from the riser, it will be quickly evac'd out the yet to be plated rock-plated "creek bottom".
    The small stuff at the base is 6" rock, and, is the last of my rocks. Time to go find more.
    DSCN5771.jpg
     
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  4. bobabode

    bobabode AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Impressive fortifications! It's been pouring all day long up here in Costa Mesa, Mike. Hope you got some of it down there.
     
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  5. mfrench

    mfrench Addicted Member

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    We were getting a light rain all morning, maybe 1/2" with. Then around 1pm+, it started raining really hard, with big drops. So, now I'm stacking concrete lawn edging pieces, and other pre-formed concrete objects, that I've removed, and, am now using for flow checks, and desiltation dams.
    lightning and immediate thunder sort of chased me back into the warm of the house.

    ready for it.
     
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  6. mfrench

    mfrench Addicted Member

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    my "gate valve" bulkhead plinth is finished (mostly).

    180lb concrete plinth 19"x19"x5"
    DSCN5844.jpg

    I'm very fond of art-deco, and the curvilinear designs. In that light, I tried to go wth curvy form to match the pipe bulkhead.
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    Last edited: Dec 17, 2018
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  7. mfrench

    mfrench Addicted Member

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    And, the finished wall, with backdrop and foundation plantings in.
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    And, the next project is already being staged, with a yard of soil removed, and contouring underway.
    It involves the junkpile in the center of this image:
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    You ask; but, what is that junk pile, Mike?
    A: really cool stuff!
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2018
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  8. mfrench

    mfrench Addicted Member

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    You asked!,....

    I woke up this morning, and someone armor plated my yard in granite slabs.
    The ringing of granite is an unbearable speech this morning.

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    Granite countertop remnants that I'm going to use for an erosion control project at the end of a run of 4" drain pipe that evac's my rain gutters out to a low point on the property that we call the sump.
     
  9. markthefixer

    markthefixer On Hiatus, dealing with Dad's estate full time Subscriber

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    That "armor plating" looks VERY familiar!!!

    I have a place near me that gives away all the NON-countertop 1 1/4" countertop granite material they cut from large slabs.

    To say I have TONS of the stuff is an understatement.
    My van is parked on a fully slabbed area, (finally, no mud there!!)
    there is a 4' x 90 foot walkway path across the yard,
    the north boundary of my lot, from the house over, is hard (10 x 35?)
    and the remaining 1' x 90+feet along the (usually flooded & muddy) old concrete sidewalk and the north property line has weed control granite slabs paving it.

    Usually there are 2 to 4 pallets of the stuff setting in the back of their parking lot
    with 2 signs, one sign exhorts area cleanliness - don't leave a mess
    the other says help yourself AT YOUR OWN RISK...

    They have some "interesting" looking granite I avoid, the veins weaken it so much that they glue a fiberglass mat to it to work on it.
    on the other hand, I LOVE the artificial stuff - that stuff is STRONG!!!!
    It can easily take a car driving over it only partially supported.

    I have a ~ 5' x 2' x 3' tall stack for the muddy spring,
    when I will turn the southern muddy expanse between my and my neighbor's houses
    into a shaded granite paved "patio".
    Between the pine tree and the huge magnolia at either end , not much wants to grow there.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2019
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  10. mfrench

    mfrench Addicted Member

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    So, what does one do with inherited slabs, and a pile of odd off-cuts? As an obsessed stacker, I stack.

    This one, named by Sarge. She squeals with delight everytime she comes down to see it.
    Sarge calls it Rainbow Falls; thusly named.

    Me: Art-Deco nut. So many things that I do somehow reflect back to that ethic, in either subtle form, or, over-the-top. This one, is blatantly so, IMHO.

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    The water emerges from this "blind channel" near the top. That is a dark grey slab. There are multiple "vents" at that bulkhead at the top, to provide for evacuation of even the heaviest flows.
    I ran the hose through the system this afternoon, just as a new storm started spitting, and the hose test passed with perfection.. Hopefully there will be enough rain tomorrow, during daylight, to see it work.
    It is still not done. I'm going to continue the stacking slabs, as typical to above, until we reach level'ish ground, up around the white drain cleanup, which I'll try to conceal. I also need to contain soil to the right, in the form of a tree ring, and, finish out the perimeter in some appropriate fashion; then, the plantings.
     
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2019
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  11. markthefixer

    markthefixer On Hiatus, dealing with Dad's estate full time Subscriber

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  12. mfrench

    mfrench Addicted Member

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    And, its inaugural run-off,... from last nights rain. It went off without a hitch. It also made a really neat sound.
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  13. rxonmymind

    rxonmymind AK Subscriber Subscriber

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    Outstanding work!
    I'm laughing because PHEW those little lava rocks tuckered me out.
    Seeing this is on a whole different level. I'd have to have oxycodone injections every hour...for what's coming. Pain!
    Great to see passion in work.
     
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  14. John James

    John James "Bob's your uncle" (Stolen) Subscriber

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    You're a madman! Looks great!
     
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  15. mfrench

    mfrench Addicted Member

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    You made me chuckle. Thanks! Its been a stressful week here (and the impetus behind this project; to get out).
    In collecting the granite slabs, I found a piece of stone called Tufa. Tufa is similar to lava, in that even very large pieces are light, like styrofoam. The piece that I found is like two basketballs in size. A granite stone of that size will weigh in excess of 60->75lbs. The Tufa, maybe 10lbs, or less. I showed it to Sarge, the spousal unit. And she, in close to disbelief, went and lifted it. She looked astonished.

    A really neat thing about Tufa, is that it holds moisture, and, plants will grown directly on it.
    So, eventually, I'll find a use for this neat piece of stone.
    internet image below:
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  16. Pio1980

    Pio1980 AK Member Subscriber

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    Reminds me of the "fart rocks" we kids would find amongst coal fire clinkers.
     
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  17. mfrench

    mfrench Addicted Member

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    @Pio1980
    Coal is foreign to me. I experienced it a wee bit in Utah, at a friends place, where they had an old coal stove in the house for heating. That thing made wood burning stoves seem like freezers, intense heat. His place was one of the pioneer homes built in the mid-late 1800's, and in Utah County, they had better access to coal from the Draper/Helper area.
     
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  18. Pio1980

    Pio1980 AK Member Subscriber

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    You'd be thinking of Price/Helper. Draper was south of Midvale in the Salt Lake valley, my earliest home.
    Fart rocks were a sort of expanded foamed glasslike stuff, with a suphurous essence trapped in the cellular structure. Breaking it up would release a fartlike stench.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2019
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  19. mfrench

    mfrench Addicted Member

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    Price, yes. I knew that too. Errr.
    I used to fish hard to access areas of the Price river, way back when. There were some beautiful Cutthroats and Browns in there
     
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  20. SoCal Sam

    SoCal Sam Lunatic Member

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    That works for me on many levels. Our planet's resources are finite so re-purposing is a win.
     
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