Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Yoga Platform Progress

I was off work yesterday afternoon, so I was able to work on the yoga platforms again.  Yay!   The sequence of events for construction is:

1)  Set corner support posts in concrete - done!  Two were done already and I had posts for the 3rd platform left to do.  I was worried that it would be really difficult to get them straight and in the exact location AND shovel the concrete around them by myself, but it actually turned out to be pretty easy.  So now all 12 posts are set and ready.  The concrete was cheap!  $2.47 per bag.  The project required 6 bags of QuikCrete.  The cedar posts totalled about $35.

2)  Dig up grass for each entire below-the-platform area (6' x 7'), plus a one foot additional perimeter area.  This is manual labor at its best (as my sister would say:  "reframe -- it's a great workout!")  I had one done and two to go.  Now I have 2 done and 1 to go.  It takes me about 2 hours per platform.  And then I have to deal with nearly 2 wheelbarrows full of dug up grass.  The grass from the first platform I put into my compost tumbler.  The grass from yesterday I bagged for bulk trash, because too much of one thing in the tumbler isn't so great for the compost formula.

3)  Lay out weed stop fabric for the area of each platform, and secure it to the ground with pins.  I've purchased two rolls of weed stop fabric, and two boxes of pins.  I haven't laid any of it out yet.  For each platform it will be a 7' x 8' area.  The fabric and the pins were about $75.

4)  Put down a layer of pea gravel on top of the weed stop fabric.  I selected pea gravel because it's inexpensive, and although isn't the most beautiful stuff and it has sharp edges, it really won't show.  It's purpose is to give the weed stop fabric extra staying power against weeds.  I don't want any greenery poking up between the planks over time, and then have to try to figure out how the heck to get under there to get rid of it!  Home Depot sells pea gravel for $3.87 for a 50# bag.  I'm guessing 3 bags per platform, but at this point that's truly a guess.  I'll definitely need Red's truck to get it home.

5)  Build frames and platforms.  Red is going to help me with this part.  Our current plan is to secure treated 2" x 4"S to the cedar posts with lag bolts.  That frame will become the support edges of the platform.  Then we'll affix lumber for the platform surface. (Hello compressor and nail gun!!  Yeehaw)  I think we are going to put the planks on a diagonal for visual appeal. 

We may use yellow pine 1" x 6's or we may use the cedar fence pickets again.  I think I would want to stain both of those, and will definitely water seal whichever I choose.  The cedar will weather better than the pine, but it also will require more sanding than the pine.  I probably will not make this decision until I am standing in front of the lumber in the store...

6)  Put down a 12" perimeter of river stone around each platform.  I think this will visually "ground" each platform and the round stones will be soothing to look at. 

7)  Then I'll start filling in with plants -- lavender, maybe some sedum -- I'll definitely want something fragrant back surrounding the platforms. 

It appears that I am going to meet my goal of having at least one platform before my sister arrives in a few days.  Aren't goals great?  The phantom deadline definitely worked for me.

I can already feel the platforms supporting me and grounding me, and the sun on my face.  And I have more than one neighbor who does yoga too!  One of them wants to be a yoga instructor, and another has a mother who is a yoga master!  I'll be in great company.  I can't wait!

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