An English In Kentucky


















Wednesday April 23rd 2014  Tim Candler


     There are rules about concrete. There's proportion of cement, of sand and of something like gravel. If you're looking at a sky scraper, rules about concrete include things like steel reinforcements, and the proportions of cement and aggregates are rather critical, otherwise tall concrete buildings fall over or collapse.  And there is the issue of  the extent to which concrete is subject to freeze and thaw. A more porous concrete is more likely to fall prey to freeze and thaw, than a less porous concrete. Then you sometimes come across a gardener who is obsessed by edging and who has seen his timber edging badly challenged by a kind of white rot that potters around his timber edged beds in a manner that can only be described as sinister.

     Concrete edging to garden beds has a certain permanence.  It's sort of like gravel paths, which once established are a nightmare to transplant. But at least with his concrete edging a gardener isn't looking at load bearing structures, all he's trying to do is maintain some kind of orderliness, so that when he's wearing his sun hat and it's nine hundred degrees,  he can still have some sense of being in charge.   And,  because gardeners feel unsafe in the company of building supplies and have a certain allergy to things like bulldozers and hard hats and tool belts and measuring tapes it's safe to say that over the years the proportion of cement in a gardener's concrete edging begins to dwindle.  So it can be tense when it comes time to knock off edging forms, and even more exciting to see how a new concrete edge manages winter.



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