Here at Ironworks, winter is approaching so it is time to finalize the garden before the first early frost.  First, I thought it would be important to give you the recipe and directions for planting an industrial garden.

Ingredients for a Bird / Bat-House:
1 Potty mouth wife
1 Testosterone infused husband
1 Kubota tractor
1 – 15′ tall Bat-House Pole
1 – 3′ deep hole
wedging blocks chopped into bits

Gus’ Garden Tools
Typical Garden Tools

As we are moving the pole from the truck to the planting area  Gus is driving the Kubota tractor and I’m guiding the heavy pole towards certain tragedy.  Gus, the Greek, is plowing along like Green Acres with the pole suspended from a lift that he built onto the end of the front bucket.

Cursing under my breath as we go I keep repeating the same phrase. Frack, oh frack. Don’t push me off the fracking wall.  Ffffffffrack. Thank you Battlestar Galactca for giving me a substitute word for the “F” word.

Top with Bird House Base and Left-over Lift Loop
Permanently Cemented in Place

Since, everything at ironworks weighs in like an elephant and with my 110 pound skinny assed frame it’s a challenge.  I’m a gutless woman when it comes to anything that gets my blood pumping from fear and adrenalin.  Gus and I planted the start for the birdhouse or aka bat-house depending on who takes it over first.  Its base is about 15 feet high and weighs at least 200 pounds.  The top plate will hold the little bird house once it is built and we plan to hang a couple of bat-houses or feeders off the side pole.  Yes, we do have bats!  With a lot of maneuvering and pole juggling we finally had the bat-house platform in place.  Then the chopped up concrete block bits were wedged about the hole so that it was vertically level.  Praying (me) that it didn’t topside, Gus ran off to mix up the cement and then concrete the pole into place.  To my disbelief it actually set and didn’t fall over.

Ingredients for a Jack-Hammer Flower Bed:
1 Nit-picky wife
1 Stubborn husband
3 vintage miners jack hammers
1 Vampire stake
4 Strategically placed large granite rocks

Lovely Industrial Miner’s Jack Hammers
Sunset View After Jack’s
Sunset View without Jack’s

One would think that this Jack-Hammer flower garden would be delightful and yes I agree it should.  But not where the silly strong-headed Greek placed it. We’ve had several discussion about where he planted them and I think I’m still losing that battle.  I would have preferred that they not be in the sunset view as they are not my favorite pieces. They were staged right in the middle of my sunset view from where I’m having early evening cocktail hour on the patio. Who would have thought the land was so fertile right there for ironworks to be planted in that particular  spot.  So I thought a poll would be helpful in convincing the Greek to move to a more suiting location.  Blooming flipping frackin metal garden. What do ya’ think?

Ingredients for Sunrise Industrial Daisy Wheel:
1 Happy wife
1 Happy husband
1 3′ Industrial Pully
1 Industrial steel base

Placement of the sunrise wheel on the raised platform must be precise and it was perfect!  It’s a pulley wheel about 3 feet in diameter and stands about 4 feet high.  It is balanced on a base that was planted into the ground about 2 feet deep.   As we were placing it on it’s platform it got away from us and almost ran me over.  I just dusted the dirt from my jeans, checked my vitals and we started over.  This was a close call, again,  as this particular flower was planted close to the edge of a 4 foot drop off.

2013-11-26T10-56-56_0 2013-11-26T10-56-56_1

No poll needed here!  I love where the Greek planned for this gigantic flower to flourish.


We wanted to put up an arch type structure at our entry to the cabin but found that with the new county rules and regulations that the arch would have to be at least 50 feet inside the property line. Of course, Gus almost blew a gasket over this and several other issues dealing with the county inspector.  He was ready to travel around the county taking pictures of every entry arch that somewhat resembled the Ponderosa.

In the long run our IRONWORKS SIGNAGE arch turned out very nice and is now a lead in to the main courtyard.  It’s a massive amount of steel that Gus saved from the local metal scrap yard and very little cost.  At 20 feet high and 40 feet across with lighting at each high corner, it makes a bold statement leading to the house.

For the signage, we purchased the lettering from an antique store, Brass Armadillo in Goodyear Arizona and the light cases from another antique store.  Due to again county regulations we had to shield the lights so that they did not disturb the neighbors.  We improvised by shielding the lights with two large peanut cans turned upside down and painted oil rub bronze to match the rest of the sign. While building the actual heavy Ironworks sign, Gus jammed a finger between the metal frame surrounding the sign and the board that holds the lettering. Ouch… you can only image the words.

I kept telling him he was getting carried away with all the heavy metal but somehow it all turned out nicely.  We almost named the home site “Heavy Metal” but I vetoed that.   Here is Gus 20 feet up in the air balancing on a ladder.  I was holding the ladder at the base most of the time to keep it stable.   He is securing the signage to the arch.


Hanging the sign over the arch was quite an experience for Gus. He had to use his little Kubota tractor to lift the sign up and then balance it in precisely the right place to keep it from twisting sideways. He is a lot more adventuresome than me.  Here’s Gus on his tractor.  I put it on social network several months back with the little jingle; “green acres is the place to be…”


I was afraid for him all the while he was hanging the signage but it all went well. Gus made the sign from welded metal purchased at the scrap yard.  The cost was very minimal compared to what we would have had to pay if we’d hired someone to create it.  The sign was hung without any mishaps or missing fingers. Whew!!  Thanks, Gus… it turned out great.  More to come later…