Yet another use for my pickup load of stone the other day is a bench for the little people. No I'm not talking fairies, elves, or garden gnomes but my two girls. Of course anyone else who might happen upon the bench and need to take a load off their feet is welcome to do so. I was lucky to find the main bench stone among all those other stones. As you can see it's very thick (around 5-6 inches) and long enough (around 3'-3'6") to be perfect for a small bench. I needed two other stones that were of sufficient height to raise the main seat up and keep it level. Since the ground slopes to the right I selected one that was slightly thicker for the right side while another smaller one was selected for the left side.
One of my concerns was that the stones be stable enough that neither of my children would get hurt by a rolling stone. I shimmed up the underside of each side stone with smaller flat rocks until the bench seat was set with only a minor wobble. To test it I jumped on it a couple times, stood on it and wobbled back and forth, and of course sat on it for a couple minutes to watch the birdbath garden. Then I had my oldest daughter test it. She sat, wobbled, and jumped too while I stood next to her just in case and we declared it safe. Since the bench stone weighs more than she does I highly doubted that anything she could do would move it.
I've worked the bench in so that it smoothly fits in with the stone borders around the area, at least as smoothly as rough hewn stone can be. It rests underneath a birch tree that was new this spring and beside a beautyberry which is also a 2009 addition. My hope is that the underside of the bench will serve as a toad refuge since they like to hide underneath rocks and I will always welcome insect and slug predators to my garden! Perhaps I'll nickname the bench, "The Toad Stool". We'll see!
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Wednesday, August 19, 2009
A Natural Stone Bench
Dave is the author of Growing The Home Garden and runs a small nursery business growing vegetables and herbs for local customers in Spring Hill, TN. (Blue Shed Gardens or FB page). He has written for gardening publications, Troy-Bilt and Lowe's and is available for edible garden consulting. Dave gardens organically and when he isn't writing, collecting seeds, or propagating plants he's parenting his 4 children as a stay at home dad.