Life is short, break the rules. Forgive quickly, kiss slowly. Love truly, laugh uncontrollably and never regret anything that makes you smile. - Samuel Longhorne Clemens (Mark Twain)

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Renovating the Garden - Round 2

We learned even more interesting things about that wall today. One its like an iceberg with more concrete underground than above. I think its about 20" top to bottom (the contractor is estimating a full 24"). The long side and one short side are out but the concrete on the west side is almost completely buried. Also the earth is so compacted after years of use that its almost like concrete itself.

They brought in a Bobcat instead of my predicted jackhammer. The Bobcat just didn't have the torque necessary to really dig into something this compacted but they made it work, mostly, in the end.

If all goes well this morning, then they will be able to install the paver wall on Thursday.

The primary tool for the day, none of that electric jackhammer business. They wanted a bigger version of the bobcat but this is all that was available on short notice.

Serious progress by noon.

Finally the east wall gives up the ghost. Note that it came away in three large chunks rather than the hoped for easy to handle pieces. It took about an hour to get this part of the wall out.

End of the day the west wall stands alone

There is still a lot of dirt to pull out of there. Hopefully the grapevines aren't going to suffer to much.

The pavers ready for installation, we hope on thursday

A pile of large concrete pieces. Earl didn't mess around when he built the wall for his garden.

Taking out the west wall will be a challenge since its mostly buried.


  1. Bobcats are great fun..I know you´re not really supposed to but you can get them to kick up and drive on the rear wheels.
    The 2nd wall. I´ve taken out a few foundations in my time and used this "trick" a couple of times with sucess. Using the Bobcat, dig down at the free end of the wall until you get under the foundation .Then raise the arm of the bobcat slightly, insert the bottom edge of the shovel under the foundation as far as it will go..the further the better, bung a large flatish lump of concrete under the flat bottom of the shovel and then lower the arm as you raise /tip the shovel up. The lump of concrete under the shovel acts as a fulcrum Point and the whole length of the foundation as a lever. As (if ) it starts to come out, wiggle the Levers side to side ..it´s a bit like pulling a tooth. Worth a try :-)

    1. I'll suggest that to the crew when they come back. They missed Thursday so we are hoping they come back today to finish. I'm pretty sure they sliced through one of the irrigation pipes, we are suddenly getting a lot of mud over there when the sprinklers go on, after I capped the pipe!