Tuesday, August 4, 2015

It's not cute or sexy or fun

Here is something no one ever talks about on the homestead ... driveways. I'll never forget the day we moved out here, I walked around feeling like the queen of a small kingdom! We had 32 acres! The largest yard we'd ever had in the past was a mere half an acre, so 32 acres was huge!

Well, once the euphoria wore off, I realized that just like the ruler of any small kingdom, the owner of a small farm has to worry about keeping their roads in good repair. And we've not been so good about that the last few years. For at least two or three years, I've been sporadically trying to find someone to deliver more road rock out here. Finally, I got a recommendation from a friend!

So last Wednesday, we had road rock delivered. The road rock guy was surprised to learn that we didn't have a tractor or a skid loader to spread the rock. So, that meant that it was all spread by a human being -- mostly Mike. Want to know how he stays so thin and muscular? Working on the homestead is a great fitness plan.

We asked the rock guy to "tailgate it," which meant he was supposed to raise the bed of the dump truck and evenly spread the gravel on the driveway as he drove forward. It didn't work as well as we'd hoped. This pile of rock was knee high.

But, that's enough chatter! You really can't appreciate the gravity of this situation unless you see the before and after pictures. I don't think you really appreciate the top photo unless you know that it looked like this before the rock was delivered and spread ...

And you can really appreciate the improvement when driving on the driveway following a rain. Oh, yeah! Life will be so much better next spring!


Glenna said...

Oh, Deborah! I so wish I had known you were going to do this. Before bringing in the gravel, you really should have laid construction fabric. It places a barrier between the soil and the rock, keeps the rock from working into the soil and keeps maintenance down considerably. It was introduced to the world in 1982 by Crown Zellerbach and comes in woven (which I recommend for various reasons) and non-woven. Within a few years, many government agencies became familiar with the advantages of it and most now require it to be used in all public roads and highways. It reduces the initial amount of gravel needed and significantly reduces potholes because it doesn't "work down."

If you had a blade to spread the gravel, I would even suggest you still install it. If you have not already spread the gravel, you definitely would want to use it. Frankly, I am surprised the people from whom you bought the rock didn't tell you about it and recommend it. It is very valuable for private driveways for the reasons mentioned.

When you add gravel in the future, please keep it in mind. This is one oil-based product that I do think should be used. In the long-run, it uses less oil if only that in the vehicles used to repair and replace it.

Deborah Niemann said...

Thanks for the tip! We will need more gravel in the future, and I'll remember!

~Celeste~ said...

Where do you purchase construction fabric? Is it something easily found at Lowes?


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