I spend winter doing the jobs that require time and attention, that I don’t get to during the summer when everything is growing wild and needs taming. I have spent some time this winter with shaping and construction of design elements for the garden, like with the branches that where felled from trees where used to make support for an embankment around a sunken sitting area.
When making something for the garden you need to think every thing through carefully and plan for any eventuality. I always plan for maintenance because nothing lasts for ever so for these supports I made sure that the branches where one third in the ground and supported by gravel which filled the trench level to the ground. this insures that the branches don’t rot in the soil. On the side supporting the soil I protected it with plastic sheeting.
A very good product to use for protecting the branches and preserving them for years to come is a product made by Plascon called Wood Care Preservative which will seal the wood and protect it from bugs and rot. this product is safer for your environment than the old fashion creosote which did the same job but had the disadvantage that it can cause Cancer.
I finished off the area by planting penny-royal around the edges which will spread and cover the gravel and when people walk on it a lovely fragrance is released which bugs hate. On the area above I plan to plant things that like well drained soil which was created by the raised sides.
You can learn more about creating a perfect soil for your plants roots in my Grow Your Own Food lessons.