Sticks

Posted in: Garden, Handmade, Wildcrafting | 1

Sticks.

Sticks and branches are all natural, fairly easy to come by (often for free!) and also pretty flexible. This makes them perfect for crafting handwoven garden fences, trellises, wattles and hurdles. Big fun! (really, this is actually super fun to me).

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We like to weave wattles to edge our garden beds. In fact I could quite happily weave wattle edging all day long. Wattle is made by weaving thin, flexible branches around a framework of sturdy stakes. It is easy to make and likely one of the oldest building techniques used by people (maybe besides, the pile of rocks?). Anyway wattle is pretty much neato-peato.

In our gardens, we used panels of wattle to craft the terraces on our steep slope (really, really steep slope). The terraced raised beds are cut at an angle to the warm southern sun. Frost drains off along the pathways and this gives us a few extra degrees of grace in the beginning and at the end of the season. The terraced beds also form a sort of “swale” that intercepts rainwater and forms a “lens” of stored irrigation water. Agro-sciencey goodness.

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Making things with sticks is also pretty fun. You can make pretty much whatever you can imagine and I do think that stick trellises and wattle garden edging sort of blends into the plants much more than store-bought garden framing. It is easy to wind a few willows into a circle and to use that with a few stakes to hold up perennials that would like to flop and when you are done with your handmade garden-supports they can go neatly into the compost pile.

Check out these super-fantastic and most-massive stick sculptures. Oh my stars!

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Stickwork_castle

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I do so want to make something like these here at the gardens! Maybe a fabulous stick-treehouse on the hillside or a fantastically giant nest? Or maybe a stick-made Geodesic dome?

We don’t have much of a woodlot here so I am hoping that we can talk all the other Islanders into dumping their unwanted sticks and branches here are the gardens. Do you think they will go for it?

Maybe if I offer to let them play in the treehouse?

p.s. (After I wrote this post our lovely next-door over neighbours donated a very large pile of willows cut from their own trees! It is soooo fabulous to have a mountain of material to work with and I am thoroughly and most completely grateful).

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One Response

  1. Rachael

    Wild and whimsical wattle weavings!!Love the idea of a human nest….Ever seen the fishing wiers at Fundy shore……so respectful,sustainable and beautiful .You gals are doing amazing pioneer work…..keep weaving the dream.
    If you ever need a weaving hand contact me I have woven some shelters over the years no pics just the memory in my heart and my hands and this yearning……….

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