Thursday, April 24, 2008

#24--Last day to finish

We started first and are finishing last. For the past week there's been little but this crazy sprint to the end.

The almost completed rockery

There have been soooo many issues this week that it's hard to even recount them. The most major was the pond builder hurt his back the day before his installation. Our choice was to fill it in or build it ourselves--which I'd never done before. We built it ourselves yesterday and will finish today. I had to go to a pond supplier last night and get some additional supplies--there's a world I know little about!

Others include a tabletop that doesn't fit the base, a light pulled out of it's location for no apparent reason, wires which weren't buried by the lighting installation crew, etc. etc. etc. We'll finish the pool today, clean up and return for special events. It will be good to get back to regular work.

Here's the good news--What makes the rockery 'GREEN'...

Use of recycled materials:

  • All of the boulders were on site and recycled from the original rock garden.
  • Two architectural elements from Fro Heim’s legendary Japanese garden were found in the rock garden and recycled into the patio.
  • Fill for the garden was brought from a local site where a swimming pool was being dug, eliminating the need for that fill to be dumped.
  • All organic waste material from garden construction was taken to a local commercial organic waste recyclingcenter.
  • Pea gravel is used as mulch and does not need to be renewed annually. It also helps to keep the plant roots cooler in the hot sun.
  • Stone dust, a quarry byproduct has been used as pathway material.
  • Stone used to build the reflecting pool was reclaimed from a demolished bridge in Newark.

Reduction in energy needs of a traditional garden:

  • All materials have been sourced locally reducing the need to ship them over long distances decreasing the use of fossil fuels necessary to secure materials.
  • 90% of the plants in the garden are New Jersey grown, the remaining 10% were grown regionally.
  • Plants have been chosen that will thrive in the hot sun with low water requirements.
  • A solar panel provides energy to illuminate the garden at night powering 30 LED fixtures.

Environmentally sensitive construction techniques:

  • When building the garden, the area around the Rockery was left undisturbed. Areas of disturbance were limited to a narrow perimeter around the site.
  • Use of machinery was kept to a minimum and machines were not left running when not in use.


debinca said...

A job well done, very nice. I am curious about the stone dust, here we use DG, is it similar? or is the stone dust actually left over product from cutting stone from the quarry?

How does it handle water erosion? And how do you compact it?


Susan said...

Thanks. The Gala opening is tonight and it's supposed to rain!

Stone dust is a quarry byproduct. It isn't really a common pathway material here, but we used it because it underscored the sustainable focus of the garden. It gets compacted with the same type of compactor that is used for brick, pavers or any other dry paving material. It was wetted down between passes. As for erosion--if we get a hundred year storm, it will wash out. We bordered our path with steel edging to contain it and greatly reduce any erosion issues.