Saturday, January 28, 2017

New Bike Rack

Today, we finished building a bike rack.  We picked an area under one of the carport roofs in order to protect the bikes from weather.  To maximize our use of a small footprint, we went vertical, installing six hooks for adult bikes.  Under the hooks, we built a frame that the bikes can be locked to.

We ran into a wrinkle when we dug the hole for the center post: there was a large concrete footing about three inches under the surface.  So we bolted the center post right to the footing.

Finally, we can store our bikes outside!  We took a ride along the canal to celebrate.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Tranquility Tree

There's an olive tree at Sage Garden Ecovillas that I like to call Tranquility.  There are no structures or other plants within a 10 foot radius of this tree, so it seems sort of obvious to create a walking labyrinth around it, and that's what we're doing right now.  The first step was to design a path that would fit in the area.  Then we cleared away the rock and dug up any grass in the area.

Then we marked exactly where the borders would go.  The exterior border is low berm whose functions are to define the space and keep the medium that will cover the path from spreading into the yard.  The interior borders of the labyrinth will be marked by plants that fit the themes of tranquility and meditation.  We're digging trenches for the interior borders.  Part of the soil from those trenches is used to create the berm around the outside, and part of it is mixed with compost, sand, and peat moss to create a planting soil that goes back into the trenches.  We're laying down irrigation tubing under the outer berm, to supply water to the flexible drip tubing that will water the plants in the interior borders.  Here are some pictures at various stages of development.

The layout is based on the classical seven-circuit labyrinth, but simplified to fit comfortably in a small area.  The next steps are to finish digging and filling, install the drip tubing, mulch the border, spread the medium on the path (most likely sand), plant, and enjoy!