By Liesl Clark
We simply have too many rocks in our soil. When we harvest potatoes, there are many false alarms on harvest day as perfect potato-shaped rocks are procured from the soil rather than spuds. So when we cleared a new spot to add planting space to our veggie garden this summer, we had a pile of waste as a result — rocks. What to do with the rock pile? I thought about Freecycling them (yes, I’ve seen people post that they want rocks on our local Freecycle network), but then the hoarder in me took over and we chose to make stone pillars instead. It’s quite easy, but there are a few tricks you’ll need to know about to pull this artistic gardenscaping off well.
Make sure your chicken wire holes are not too wide for the size of your rocks.
1) You’ll need to cut a rectangle of chicken wire out, about 2.5 to 3 feet high (depending on how high you want your pillars to be) by 4 to 5 feet wide. Wrap the wire around, into a cylindrical shape and hook it together with the wire ends you’ve created in your wire cutting process. Make sure you leave no wire ends poking out anywhere as those could be a hazard for passers-by. You now have a cylinder cage for your rocks.
2) Then, start filling your chicken wire cylinder with rocks! The trick is to place your largest spuds, I mean, stones on the outside of the wire so they block the smaller ones from falling through the mesh. My son and daughter love filling the pillars up with the stones they bring in on their wheelbarrows.
3) Fill until your cylinder is full, brimming with stones to give a pretty fieldstone pillar affect to your favorite spaces.
Now, Make Stone Pillar Planters!
We love our pillars around the pond so much, and found we had plenty more rocks to deal with, so we created 2 more pillars with the added feature of a planter inside. Here’s how:
Fill your stones only 1/3 of the way up your chicken wire cylinder. Then, add a gallon or half gallon plastic or clay pot inside so the pot’s rim is flush with the top of the chicken wire cylinder.
Fill in around the outside edges of the pot with stones and completely cover up the pot from the outside, all the way to the rim of the pillar.
Then, plant your favorite flower in the pot as you would any planter!