Rock(s) and Roll!

Things are slow at the shop lately despite the fact that I'm on vacation--the reason: rocks. Big rocks, small rocks. The hubby and I decided that over our mutual holidays we would finally put rocks in the expanse of side-yard next to our house (living in Tucson, rock is what we typically use in lieu of grass--impossible to kill, and requires no water--it's the perfect lawn for me). This landscaping project seemed like a good idea at the time, but when that dump truck drove up and dumped 15 tons of gravel in our alley, I could practically sense the backaches that approached. Now, four days later, we're almost done with the entire thing--and I must admit that it looks pretty darn good. But, as predicted, my back sure does hurt.

In the spirit of sharing, if you should ever decide to xeriscape your yard, here are some tips:

1) Get rocks with jagged edges--yes, you probably won't want to walk on these barefoot, but when you do walk on them the squared edges will lock into each other--much easier to get around the yard. Smooth rocks can slide around and cause slippage.

2) Get the proper tools--a flat-edged shovel with a deep scoop will help you dig into the pile that lays before you. You will also need a wheelbarrow or cart. I suggest a four-wheeled cart like this one--it's much easier to maneuver. And lastly, a good rake is necessary--get one with a flat edge so you can flip the rake over and spread out the pile of rock with the flat end.

3) Get help--this is a big job--promise pizza and beer and get the gang over there--just remember to get extra shovels!


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