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thedaddycat

Garden leveling update

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thedaddycat
I finally got a chance to do a bit more leveling on my garden today. I really need to get it done so I can plant it. I tore the plow loose from the hitch yesterday so I had to weld it up before I could get started today. Here I've made several passes with the plow to loosen the soil some more......

Of course there were many more rocks to be found and rolled off to the side. Here are just a few of them, not even very big ones at that!!! The moldboard plow will pull anything up to about a basketball size rock out of the ground.

The dozer blade works well for pushing the loosened earth over to the low side. This area is where the wood pile was, raised about two feet from where it was. The crest of the hill is about a foot lower by now. Since this is mostly the good loam that I had trucked in a few years ago, I think I'll put the asparagus here and just get another truck to spread over the middle where I'm now getting into the sandy sub-soil, as seen in the above pic.

No matter how many rocks you take out, there are more hiding just below the surface waiting for you. These are a few of the bigger ones that wouldn't just plow up with the dozer blade. I take them out with the pry bar, though that can sometimes be harder than it looks.... I found these ones after dozing the loose soil over to the right. I estimate that I doubled the size of my garden area and moved around thirty tons of earth and rock on this project. Not too shabby for a couple of fourty-somethings, eh?

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Nick
You really moved a lot of rocks and dirt! I think you and I have enough rocks to start a stone quarry. I have the same amount of rocks in my yard as you do,(I'm located in Newburgh, NY) When we had a new septic installed 5 years ago and I am still puliing up stones about the size of your fist, that have surfaced even though we thourghly raked the area. [img]http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2003-5/184497/giantrock.jpg[/img] This picture shows the amount of rock in our yard. I cleared the whole area of brush and vines. It had not been cleared since 1991, when my father thought it would be a good idea to throw all the brush there.

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Kent
Kirk, Now that you seem to have learned all the tricks in moving and placing heavy stones, when are you going to come up and help me build my retaining wall? I've used the loader and dug out quite a few of the stones frome the old foundation, but I have quite a few that are too big for it to handle. I'd been thinking of trying to find an old car hood to use for a stone boat and just drag them out....

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Roy
Build a sled to pull rocks on. I made mine from 4 x 4's for runners with beveled ends on the front. Nailed/screwed a 3/4" plywood deck on with a 1 x 4 cross piece in the front. Then drilled a hole in the plywood & cross piece for a bolt to hook a chain to. Roll the rocks on, hook up the tractor and away you go. I also made an A-frame so I can flip the sled upside down, turn it 90°, put rocks on it for weight and used it for a drag to level my yard. My simple, cheap method.

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Kent
Roy, I thought of a sled, since I grew up using one behind a mule... We also used car hoods for snow sleds. I thought the car hood might spread the weight better, making it easier to pull... and it's "ready-made" except for a hitch point of some kind.

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mowerman1193
I use the old car hoods for alot of that kind of stuff.They are smooth and dont ussually do any damage to the lawn.If you wax its paint before using it you can pull it easier:D:Dgood way to test different waxes too:D;)

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thedaddycat
Well, a week later and I'm still pulling rocks out but the garden is just about leveled off. Now I need a truck or two of screened loam and I can plant....

Here are a few of the bigger ones that came out in the last week....

...along with a pile of smaller ones. Hey Reed, come and get 'em!!!

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Nick
Kirk,I think we just found the clubs new expert rock mover!:D Your welcome at our house anytime to come move rocks. I was telling someone about your rock moving and they said it couldn't be done with a garden tractor, they took back their statement after I had shown them the pics.

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thedaddycat
Nick, to be honest about it all the bigger ones I loosened up with the pry bar enough to get a chain on, then pulled them with the truck. If you look closely you can see the chain hanging off the trailer ball. But if you look back on another post about it, you will see that the Putt Putt did indeed drag some fairly large ones around.....

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ReedS
Kirk, the garden looks great, spreading the loam should be the easy part.:D Do you think that they're good wall material? As soon as I have a day that isn't spoken for I'd be happy to take some of those rocks of your hands but if you have anyone else that wants them don't hesitate, still trying to find the time to hunt down a seal for Kent's hydro lift etc. etc. I don't mind a little moss......

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Nick
quote:
Originally posted by thedaddycat
Nick, to be honest about it all the bigger ones I loosened up with the pry bar enough to get a chain on, then pulled them with the truck. If you look closely you can see the chain hanging off the trailer ball. But if you look back on another post about it, you will see that the Putt Putt did indeed drag some fairly large ones around.....
I see the chain in the picture, where all my rocks are the septic is over there, and I don't dare bring anything big over there. You know what works well for moving rocks? A full size dodge van with a 318 engine, I helped moved plenty of rocks that way, and we also pulled down an old cinder block foundation with no problem. We are still figuring out how to get a truck into the backyard to deliver a shed, I am still deciding which one I like the 10 X 20. or the 10 x 16. We can get it to the right of that huge rock if the neighbor lets us use her driveway. There is a some rocks sticking about 6 inches out of the ground, and around 3 feet long in the direction we want to put the shed, but if this company use a roll off bed, (the kind used for large dumpsters) then we will be fine. This is the area that needs to be cleared mostly brush, but some rocks sitting on top of the ground, (because of the careless backhoe operator) There used to be a 10 x 10 shed there when my parents bought the house but it was falling in so it came down. [img]http://img.villagephotos.com/p/2003-6/184497/ShedArea.jpg[/img]

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Nick
quote:
Originally posted by buster
Hey Nick, helped put a basement under my grandmothers house on North Plank Road in Newburgh about 40 yrs ago, thought we got all the rocks out of that area.ha ha:D Buster
North Plank Road,:p What part? That's a pretty long road since it runs from Route 9W all the way to Rock Cut Road. Maybe I'll recognize the area of the house to figure out where she lived. This area has changed in 40 years, (even more in the last 3) I live on Frozen Ridge Road, ever hear of it? It's a mile off 9W and .03 miles off Fostertown Road.

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thedaddycat
Nick, you just need to get creative with how you do it. I have a steel cable and a couple of pulleys rated 8 and 15 tons along with several longer chains and straps. Some creative rigging and you can hook the pulleys to trees and route the cable in such a way that you don't even have to be close to your septic field with the truck...

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thedaddycat
Well I guess this is going to have to be good enough for this year. My son and I got only "a few"(about a dozen) of the bigger ones this time around and hopefully all the "Tiller Killers" are gone. I will get a truckload of screened loam tomorrow, spread it, and transplant all the plants that we've been growing in containers.

I didn't push the soil all the way to the edges because I need to build the retaining walls up a bit more. Not because the garden will be that high, but because I need to move the rocks out some more. I've covered about two or three feet worth of gardenable area around the edges with all the rocks that I took out. I just didn't have the time to stack them all........

Even the back corner wound up as a dumping ground for the seemingly unending hoardes of stones that kept surfacing. You can see the tire tracks from my truck where I'm starting to clean up the scrap pile. That area will get cleaned out and leveled too. I got one of those "Instant Garage in a Box" pipe structures, 12' X 20', that will get set up in that area. Then I'll have somewhere sheltered to put my tractors and implements, and to work on them out of the rain.

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