Sticky post


retaining wallsThe word “retain” comes from two Latin words, “re” (back) and “tinere” (to hold) which just goes to show that even Julius Caesar had trouble with his garden! He needed to hold it back, and probably you do too! Here’s how:

Soil pushes down. Imagine you’re a soil particle at the top of a slope and the bottom of it looks oh-so-inviting. You need to keep that soil particle and all its pals at the top where it belongs, so you need a wall, but not just any old wall. It’s no good having a gorgeous one if it’s going to fall over. That nasty force called GRAVITY is pushing your soil downward, and soil ain’t no featherweight! It’s a hefty 100 pounds per cubic foot, and its sole aim in life is to flatten your wall, so it needs something equally robust to push back against it.

Dig the lowest courses of the wall to 1/10 the height of the wall to stop the force of the ground from pushing it out. Make the wall in backward leaning steps. Straight building allows the wall to fall as soon as it bulges. (Retaining wall blocks frequently have specially shaped lips so that they fit together neatly.) Keep the structure even; make a very sturdy base with solidly compacted material.

A retaining wall has two enemies: first, water. Water can damage a wall in two ways: first, it can wash out supporting material, or it can stubbornly accumulate behind your lovingly built wall and put so much force on it that finally it gives way. There is little you can do about water sneaking in – it’s a force of nature – but you can escort it out.

Have the top of your wall nearly even with the top of the soil. This way it flows harmlessly over. There is about a foot of compacted material underneath that, and gravel underneath that: (add filter material in case of clogging), and this allows water to run down to the perforated drain tile, which shows it speedily off elsewhere! If it can drain through the blocks themselves, so much the better. Don’t forget that water freezes and EXPANDS in winter. A badly built wall won’t last long then.

Poorly compacted material retains more water, and presses harder on your wall, so it’s important to do the following: rent a heavy duty plate tamper and compact the soil 4 inches (10 centimetres) at a time as many times as it takes to get the job done. Your neighbours may not thank you, but trust me, your garden will.

Depending on the height of your wall and the amount of soil, you may have to add a reinforcing grid. The higher the wall, the more the likelihood is that you’ll need it. Your gardening supplier can help you with this.

Backfill only with sand or gravel, not with topsoil. It loves water, and anyway, it’s better for growing flowers in!

Hope that helps! Have fun!




So you want to Do It Yourself to (A) Save money (B) Impress your friends and family (C) Boost your self esteem. First thing you do is scrabble around the old toolbox among the sad pile of implements that Noah probably used to build the ark. Then you have a ‘EUREKA!’ moment. A table saw! But where to start? Start here.

Craftsman Evolv 15 Amp 10 Inch. Table Saw 28461:

Craftsman Evolv 15 Amp 10 Inch. Table Saw 28461


Weight 50.4 pounds
Product Dimensions 26.9 x 19.8 x 12.9 inches
Item model number 28461
Power Source A.C.
Included Components Bare-Tool

No batteries required.

As one satisfied customer wrote it’s “a beast of a saw!” At around $129, it’s not too shabby on the wallet either! Your beautiful butchers’ block is only a few hours away.






DEWALT DWE7480XA 10-Inch Compact Job Site Table Saw with Guarding System and Stand.DEWALT DWE7480XA 10-Inch Compact Job Site Table Saw with Guarding System and Stand.


Item Weight 67.2 pounds
Product Dimensions 26.5 x 25.8 x 17.5 inches
Origin Taiwan
Item model number DWE7480XA
Style With Stand
Item Package Quantity 1
Number of Handles 1
Included Components Stand, Bare-Tool
Batteries Included? No
Batteries Required? No
Warranty Description 3 year limited manufacturers warranty

 It costs $399, and most buyers seem to think it’s money well spent! That beautiful mirror fame will be hanging on the wall real soon!


SKIL 3410-02 10 Inch Table Saw with Folding Stand

SKIL 3410-02 10 Inch Table Saw with Folding Stand

Part Number 3410-02


Item Weight 67 pounds
Product Dimensions 28.9 x 20.9 x 13 inches
Item model number 3410-02
Color Red
Power Source corded-electric
Item Package Quantity 1
Included Components stand
Batteries Required? No


Priced around $221 this is a very good value-for money saw, but it’s not for cabinet makers or craftsmen; nothing in its price range is. But that stylish-sofa-from-old-pallets is almost finished!

Porter-Cable 10-Inch Jobsite Table Saw

Weight (With Rolling Stand): 74 pounds

No-Load RPM: 5000

Max Rip, Right of Blade: 26 inches

Price: $300

This saw is simple to use and has an owner’s manual with a easy to follow instructions. It cuts well, is sturdy and solid and there is no rough or grating movement. A well designed product and excellently priced! The doll’s house is on its way!


Ridgid R4510

Weight (With Rolling Stand): 94 pounds

No-Load RPM: 4400

Max Rip, Right of Blade: 24 1/2 inches

One of this saw’s big plusses is its ease of movement. The wheeled stand comes as a regular feature, not an extra. It is simple to put up and down and slides easily along on large wheels. The saw is very powerful, comparable with any of the big name brands. It is one of the most expensive of the cheaper variety but the quality is excellent and it’s hefty enough to last forever. Price: $500. The garden hut is halfway finished. Glad you bought this one now, aren’t you?


So these are the best selection for me. I also did another research to see other reviews from different people and this would be the best review I could find. Perhaps now you can take all those old tools and donate them to the charity of your choice – if they’ll have them!