A full day of bright sunshine today. The day began with trimming the lower branches of a valley oak that overhung the driveway. Trimming involved the loppers and hand saw, and a step ladder on a slope I was glad no one was around to watch.
I finished clearing the final patch on the far edge of the back lawn, completing the defensive perimeter along approximately eighty feet of that edge. One advantage of water soaked ground is that thistle comes out effortlessly. I cleared another three or four feet of perimeter just for the sheer joy of thistle removal by the handfuls.
I thought the platform at the far end of this perimeter was roughly on a line with the far edge of the fence at the other end. The proposed retaining wall will eventually follow that line. I played out a string along the entire eighty foot length of the perimeter, and at first my eyes told me, to my great dismay, that the line was way out of kilter. The scientific method took over at this point, and I pondered what the line should be parallel to. The slab for the porches runs for about forty feet beside the house, and new beds will extend the line of that slab another twenty feet to the flagstones beside the gazebo. A 25 foot tape measure was handy. From the nearest edge of the porch slab to the perimeter line was 226 inches. At the other end the extended line of that slab was 262 inches from the edge of the platform. I doubt that three feet of expansion over an eighty foot line will be noticeable to the eye, especially since my eyes could not find a parallel without a tape measure. The benefit is that the proposed retaining wall will closely continue and fit the cement block retaining wall around the gazebo and on into the front yard.
The next task will be to set the two center boxes on the edge of the back lawn. The distance from the edge of the platform to the flagstone at the near end is just under 49 feet, and the two boxes will be dead center. I will check again with my trusty 25 foot tape measure.
I was also back at the Rising Sun Nursery today. The owner is more confident that the buyer will continue running a nursery at that location. She is not carrying citrus trees now but expects to have a stock in March. I will take that as a recommendation as to when to plant, and they have carried lime trees in the past.
The last hour of the day I was trimming more branches off the fallen willow by the pond. Mike came out and graciously told me I did not have to haul the trimmed branches into his yard. He will bring his chipper to the branches and create more mulch on site. Apparently, willow is a fast burning wood and perhaps not the best for wood stove heating. We finished the day looking at the other half of the willow that is still standing and wondering when it might come down, voluntarily or otherwise.