Rocks, Walls and Decks

deck with flower aug 2-17.jpg

It's summer in Fairbanks and when I'm not writing, I'm usually trying to steal a few hours and play in the yard. The deck and gazebo are the newest addition, with a knock out view to Ester Dome that explains why I've cut trees, dug holes, lost my boots in the muck and had a ton of fun doing it all.

The willow walls in the foreground are woven from young growth from Moose Creek which crosses our twenty acres.  The rocks are scavenged from out beyond Murphy Dome (the family helps with the loading, but not the building; that's all me). And the gazebo was raised with the help of a husband plus two very good friends.

I've been working on the stairs and stone walls for years adding a section here, a path there. They're dry stacked since the oldest techniques work best on permafrost that shifts with the seasons. One of the best resources I've found is a book called The Art and Craft of Stonescaping by David Reed though there are many others as well and they're not hard to find.

Weaving the walls is easier than you'd expect, and since the willow grows virtually everywhere, it's free. Cut it while it's green so it's pliant. I pound rebar a few feet into the ground for stability, but wood stakes would also work. Here's a few images for ideas on building willow walls.