Digging Holes…

Today we made a mini-pond, a mud hole, a pig bath up on the sow terrace. I moved the old cast iron bathtub up into a hollow I had carved out yesterday evening beside the gate. Now the pigs can get water up on that level. Using the tractor I shaped the soil of the terrace and dug out a small pond, maybe 20′ long and 10′ wide. The entire level is now sloped to direct water into that spot which will make a good watering hole and mud bath – something the pigs enjoy greatly in the hot weather. Pigs love water. Will jokes that they look like hippos basking in the sun out in the pond on a sunny day. The ducks will also appreciate the watering hole.

Holly and I built a stone wall in one side of the pondlet and put in a 4″ drain pipe that goes under the terrace to let the overflow pass down to the next level where it will feed the pondlet down there and then down to the pond by the road. The stone wall protects the pipe from rooting by the pigs. I also put in a scratching rock on the up hill side of the pondlet. That boulder will act as a wind break for the first den in the winter.

The other big thing I got done was digging ten holes along the fence line of the sow terrace so we can plant apple trees there next spring. Tomorrow we’ll mix compost into the holes and let that age further over the winter so the holes will be ready early in the spring for the apple trees. If you have ever wanted to put in fruit trees, do it now, or rather get ready and plant them either this fall or next spring as appropriate for your area. For sixteen years I have planned that next year I’ll plant apple trees. There has always been something, often money, that has stopped me. If I had planted two every year then by now I would have an orchard. Wooda, cuda, shuda…

About Walter Jeffries

Tinker, Tailor...
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2 Responses to Digging Holes…

  1. outofmire says:

    Didn’t you say you have shallow soil? How’d you dig a pond? How’d it turn out?

  2. Most places the soil cover is fairly thin over the ledge of the mountain but in some areas there are deep pockets of soil where it collected at the bottoms of slopes or where the rocks changed shape. By carving and damming the soil we are able to make small ponds on the slopes and in the deeper areas. None of our ponds are large, nothing over 30′ long. Rather we have a whole series of them that collect and store water from the mountain. It works well.



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