Introduction: The Community Spiral Garden
The Frog Alley Community Garden in Delray Beach FL had a spiral garden put together with stacked bricks. It lasted about six months. As it was crumbling I volunteered to rebuild the spiral with concrete to make it last longer and make it pretty again! :)
Step 1: Clean It Up
I took the existing brick and re-stacked them as best I could. filled in some spots with coarse concrete (not wet) and then started to wrap wire lathe over the entire spiral.
The wire lathe was cut ever foot or so to accomodate the curve and wrapped over the top of the bricks.I used some steel wire to poke between the bricks so that we get that cool curved top in the wire form.
I SHOULD have used newspaper on top of the bricks to fill in the big gaps, but I didn't so I used a little more concrete that I needed to.
Where the wire lathe was getting unruly I used temporary stakes in the ground or plant bed. (Notice I left a bunch of the plants in place, this was to help keep the soil stable and I hoped we could keep a couple of the plants alive!)
Step 2: Having Fun With Concrete
I used the cheapest concrete I could find from Home Depot. It was donated, but still I wanted to keep the costs down. Here is the supply list for this job.
10-60lb bags of concrete (make sure it does not have pebbles or filler)
5 large sheets of wire lathe
1 100ft roll of wire
Forming tools of various sizes
GLOVES (you will thank yourself, concrete is rough on the skin)
Happy helping hands!
Step 3: Rebuilding the Walls
I started at the bottom and worked my way up. If dirt gets in the mix, just cover it over. The most important step is mixing the concrete to just the right consistency in small batches (the drill/mixing blade) was very helpful and saved a lot of extra work. So the consistency should be wet enough to stick to the wall, but not so firm that is falls off due to lack of stickiness. So pay with it, I probably didn't have it right until the 5th bag of concrete :).
Remember you can always go over the whole thing again with a thin coat to clean up any messy areas, so make it fun, and be sure to get dirty! :)
Step 4: The Last Step
I added some bamboo to the hidden top end of the spiral garden (it will be covered by plants) This was not as pretty as it could have been because I ran out of concrete, but the purpose was to give a home to wild bees and garden bugs that will help us keep our garden green.
If you were starting this from scratch, you could buy some used bricks and have a ball making a spiral garden.
I would like to thank the Frog Alley volunteers that assisted in the first build and the second.
BTW, the spiral garden has so many benefits. Be sure to do searches online. To name a few
2. Less Watering
3. You can put the plants in their more densely than a normal garden
4. Fun to build! :-D