Bluestone Garden Bench

Here’s a short video of a garden bench Nancy designed that we built for the current project.  I get a lot of satisfaction out of building with stone.


Please enjoy the video of the process.


Closely-fit flagstone patio

I made a simple slideshow video to illustrate a variety of flagstone installation that we take pride in; the jigsaw shaped and fitted stones that make up this style of patio.  It takes patience and a good supply of high quality flagstones to achieve this level of work.  This is a project where we built the hardscape in September and will return to plant the landscape in the fall.


Please enjoy the videography:


Basalt Rock Retaining Wall

This video is an excellent example of our ability to build great landscape features for our customers even when their yard is difficult to access.  In this example, the customer had a steep slope in their backyard- the access was through a narrow gate and they live on a busy street.  None of this obstacles prevented us from installing a terraced retaining wall with 20 tons of 1-man basalt rocks.  Their yard went from an unnavigable cliff of brambles and blackberry vines to a lovely set of terraces with a patio area and planting beds.


Enjoy the drama:




A patio installation job bracketed our recent vacation, which was good news for the quality of the finished product- we found a huge stump that needed to be removed.  Building a patio over a tree stump, no matter how recently the tree had been cut will only lead to heartache as the roots rot and the ground settles.  The stump had to go. Fortunately the guys on my crew are strong, stubborn and driven.  The stump had no chance for survival.

before patio

just begun

The correct process for removing a stump on a worksite where there is no easy access to bring our excavator is to dig around the stump by hand and chop the roots into bite sized pieces with an axe.

digging under stump

Simple as that!

chopping stump

Get some good access to the stump

gravel infill

Hack away bit by bit. Infill with crushed rock.  I like to use a blend of clean crushed 5/8 quarry rock with a bedding of 1/4 minus mineral rock.  Its a proprietary blend that gives us excellent results.  We use the “mechanical animal”compactor.  We hate the thing when it comes to loading and unloading it, its somewhere north of 350 pounds.

leveling and compacting gravel

We love it when it comes to compacting soils which leads me to the part I mentioned at the beginning, how it was good we broke for vacation.

We compacted the soil one more time after having let the ground rest for a week, and the area where we had removed the stump had settled just just a little bit.

after patio

Here’s a detail of a portion of the finished product from about the same viewpoint of the first picture.  See the block wall behind the guys?   Its the same wall in this picture.