Sunday, June 21, 2009

One Man Rocks

Sounds like a book title right? "One Man rocks - An insiders look at the drug infested rock music industry".



Actually, one man rocks is a tech term in the landscaping industry, and is fairly self explanatory. "What size rocks do you want around the waterfall?" answer: "One man rocks." According to the industry standard, one man rocks range in size from approximately 25# up to 150# a piece.














As you can see from this photo, even though a half yard of one man rock isn't much (in terms of volume), but it weighs enough to make the little golden trucklette squat.












Coals to Newcastle? How about rocks to Rocky Acres?

My particular half yard is populated by rocks that probably run mostly to the smaller end of that spread. I have mixed feelings: Bigger rocks are much more impressive, also one of them takes up a lot more space than smaller rocks, and of course part of the idea is to cover the space. On the other hand, do you have any idea how much a 150 pound rock weighs? It weighs a TON! And since Juan, Pedro, and Ingmar have the day off, I'm not complaining too loudly about having to work with smaller (and lighter) rocks.

So the materials are in hand, the sweedish backhoe













is revved and ready to 'rock and roll', I got a good nights sleep. Guess all that is left is to .... complain about the weather.

It is strange, the weather. It has started to rain, nothing too strange about that here in the Pacific Northwet, but did it have to start Friday? Friday, the day I took off from work to play with my rocks, the start of my three day wekend push to finish this home handyman project? Well consider this: when it started raining Thursday night it ended a small record; the first rain to fall in 29 days. If it had waited just another 11 minutes it would have been 30 days.

As I have said so many times, It's just rain, I'm sanforized, color fast, water proof, ... oh, and it's good for the trees. In this neck of the woods we have come to the conclusion that you can do just about anything in the rain that you can do in the dry, (what else explains cycling statistics in cities like Seattle and Portland?) But still, rain reduces the fun factor on fun stuiff, and tends to further 'dampen the mood' for things not so fun.

Oh well, I was all about the big push on the pond project this weekend and was not about to let a little rain get in the way.

First up was 'deconstructing' the existing waterfall. I never meant it to be the final iteration when I put it together, I just wanted to see if the whole thing would work. At first it didn't, but fiddling around I was finally able to get this system to work as a, ... system. Ok, so now time to pretty it up and that meant water fall remodel. This is how it came apart (think 'befor', and 'after'):












While I had things opened up I decided to dig a little shelf in the pond to better seat water plants and ... rocks.
















And this is how the new setup went together:

























































As you can see by the pics, we are not quite done, but I can see the end of this project from here, which is good, I'm about ready to start spending time on a few other things.
As we stood admiring our handiwork, Mrs C commented on what a nice sound the water fall makes. She said now it sounds like a real mountain brook. As I sit here typing this, the ssounds of the water fall just outside the window drift in on the evening breeze. It makes me think back on how many streams and creeks I've had relationships with in my life. This waterfall may need a just a little tuning. Right now it seems to be tunbed somewhere between Upper Bacon Creek, and maybe the outfall of Illabot Creek, from Illabot Lake. Maybe this is the sound of Rocky Creek.

I also took a little time to play with my new camera, Mrs C gave it to me for my birthday. This is definately a machine that is MUCH smarter than the operator. In these days of technology that seems always to be the case. But I'm learning my way around it, slowly.
Here are a couple pics of the first bloom on the white water iris. It is even more impressive in person.

























And of course a new camera means more pics of birds, of all kinds: Some large,























Some small































.. and some in between.


























Oh, and a pic of my little sharp eyed bird watching buddy too.











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