Over the past couple of days our back hoe operator has been here making the plans painstakingly developed over the last several months become a reality. First he dug a two section pond deep enough for fish to winter over. Then he scooped out the natural drainage route into the pond areas and created a flow from the adjacent water-logged woods into the ponds. The rivulet ran rapidly down the gentle slope, cascading into the first pond until it reached the height of the bank of the second, and then ever so slowly began to trickle into the second, larger and deeper pond. By sunset there was about 3 feet of water in the bottom. Can’t wait to see how full it is this morning.
Then he began scooping out the gathering area and accessible road to and from it from gates at either end of the garden parcel. The top soil from the road was piled in two long narrow mounds to give plantings of apricots, almonds, and a peach tree some better drained ground in which to spread their roots. He also mounded up some top soil near the Northwest fence line where some Chinese Chestnuts will be planted which could also use additional drainage height.
While the backhoe work was being done I was busy, chart in hand, triangulating the locations of all the plants and trees ordered for this spring and marking the locations with labeled garden stakes. At the end of the second day the contractor dug four 2x2x2 foot holes at the locations of trees already delivered and dug into our “nursery” area to preserve them until holes were ready. Today we’ll plant these trees to fine-tune our method so we can better organize and train whatever crew we can gather to help us plant the bulk of the specimens once the rest of the landscaping is complete.