The Land Saga - Our Story - Part II - The Island

When we purchased our acre of North East Florida woodland in our neighborhood, we had been watching it for more than a year, and we knew that it liked to be under water. We had also gotten a wetland's delineation done, so we knew which part of the land we could improve on, and which part we had to leave to the forces of nature.

Still, when we bought the land, it was nice and dry, and we just managed to get the surveyors out before the rain began. Less than two months later, by December, the wetland was completely under water, and it had also taken over much of our buildable area.



We had only been able to use our new-to-us wood chipper once before the water took over, and took over it did. In fact, the water came up so high that our wood chipper's tires were under water. We managed to drag it up to a larger tree, where the tree bottom elevated the ground, and then we stuffed leaves and pine needles from the street underneath. That's when the idea of creating an island began.



When we first began dragging buckets of leaves and pine needles down from the elevated street, the neighbors shook their heads, but it worked. We had a small island, and we wanted to make it bigger.

The area, where we usually accessed the wood chipper was also under water, so we filled it with leaves and big dead trunks and branches. 

It worked!

The leaves and pine needles created enough of an island for us to begin working with the wood chipper the following spring, and a year later we have now emptied the compost pile a few times, as we constantly rotate and fill it.

We just emptied our wood chip compost pile about two months ago, but because of the stay-at-home order, we have been using The Land as our exercise escape, and we now have an even bigger compost pile just waiting to be fluffed, before it is ready to be strewn about to make our island even bigger.



This past fall and winter we were looking to see the flooding happen again, but this time all we got was a high water table and some wet soil toward the back of the play area. All in all, between no hurricane damage and our composting, we've managed to create a very usable area.

A year and a half after purchasing the property we have removed the palmettos with roots from the area where our house is going to be, we've made an indention in the front part of the property, where we are growing our first large vegetable garden, and just this past week we began the first stage of removing palmettos from the rear end of the land, which will be our patio and garden area.

It is amazing what you can do with an old wood chipper, a battery-powered chain saw and a couple of shovels. We have only used the big chain saw a handful of times, because the palmettos dull the saw blade. Still, when we do bring it to The Land, it can do a lot of work in a small amount of time.

It is a family affair as we work and play together under the dancing treetops, and looking back at the before pictures the changes seem almost unreal.

The Land April 2019

 
The Land April 2020


We are dreaming and planning, as we prepare The Land for tree clearing and the much needed dirt fill.


Read more about our story...

The Land - Our Story - Part I - Dreaming of Potential

The Land - Our Story - Part III - The Video

 

And for future updates on our dreams, you can always look under The Land tab in the top navigation bar.

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