Glory's Garden

All the world's a garden, you know, and we are mere flowers within it. Come, I'll show you!

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Friday, June 24, 2011

Rock Wars or how I made my first dry river bed

How big does a stone have to be before it's a boulder?
While weeding the Abby/Julie Friendship rose garden, I came across the usual. I found weeds, sticks, twigs, spent flower stalks, yes, but I also found rocks, loads of them! I filled about 4-5 buckets full of rocks and that was just from one bed which had been dug up, weeded and replanted several times. Each time I rework a bed I get the same amount of rocks out of it again. This is a normal occurrence in my yard.
Buckets can get heavy full of rocks. They don't do my back any favors

I have to admit, this used to baffle me to no end. How can I keep getting the same amount of rocks out of a bed over and over again. I really do try to get as many out as I can each time and each time I do believe I got all of them out. I'm obviously wrong.

How this can be explained is easy enough. They must multiply in the rich soil just like my perennials do. Don't laugh. It's the only explanation and it's been...well, maybe not exactly scientifically proven, but it's on high authority. I heard Martha Stewart during one of her garden shows complain about the rocks and stones she always finds in her flower beds in her rocky New England home. She advised all gardeners to make quite certain to remove every single stone they see, even the tiniest ones, because (and I quote!) "Any stone left behind is likely to multiply and give you ten next year."

I'm not one to contradict a person which made millions upon millions of dollars telling women how to be homemakers (a job I contend mothers should have been doing for free as they always had in the past, had it not been for certain people's ideas that being "just" a homemaker was not good enough). I had thought Martha was simply trying to be funny, but lo and behold, her words turned out to be prophetic and true, at least for me.
Dry river bed smack dab in the center of a shrub border
So, I fight the Rock Wars just like Martha Stewart and all other gardeners in "rocky" New England and the even stonier Pocono mountains of PA. You may be wondering what I do with all these rocks. Pretty much what all us gardeners do. If you've ever been to New England you'll spot evidence of this strange phenomenon all around farmhouses and homes. They're called rock walls, stone pillars and dry river beds. I'd like to think of it as making lemonade out of lemons. Rocks actually come in handy at our house. I'll tell you about that some other time.


  1. Good luck with your dry river bed, and don't forget to post pics when its done.
    My sisters and I always laugh about the fact that Martha has 'nothing' over our mother other than marketing. My Mom is still gardening, canning, raising chickens etc at age 82.
    'hugs from afar'

  2. I don't think it'll ever be "done" because I keep having more rocks to toss into the dry river bed! Actually, I won't put anymore rock on it. I think it's quite full now and needs no more. I do have other places to put the rocks...our rock walls can get taller and Tom has a low spot he wants filled in with rocks on the back driveway by the pole-barn. They do come in handy, rocks do.


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