You read that right, Root Cellar; so anyone who guessed that.. you were correct! We had 2 factors to help us decide to make this now, as we had been thinking about digging one since before we moved here. We even incorporated a root cellar in ever initial house plan we drew up. The first factor in deciding to dig one now is, well the Joplin tornado; Joplin is about 50 miles west of here and the storm did pass over us but did not produce a tornado (thankfully). There are no storm shelters on our road and the closest is about a mile away in a cow field, so it’s not likely we could get to it in case of nasty weather. The second deciding factor was from a video that we watched the other day, it had a 80ish year old man who back in 1980 hand dug his own root cellar. If you do the math he would have been in his 60’s when he dug his out, so if he can hand dig one; then we certainly can.
We also may have need of a root cellar this year as we are trying (hope they produce well) a number of winter type squashes, pumpkins, and potatoes. They will all need a good storage place. We are situating it under the addition we are putting on our shed, with only a ladder to go up and down; the point behind that is to prevent the kids from using it as a play area. The idea is to use concrete once we have finished digging it out for the walls and Silver is working out how to do concrete for the ceiling. We will probably have to make a concrete “tunnel” from the top of it to the bottom of the floor unless we just extend it up to touch the floor. I think this will be a changing project as we work on it, as some ideas won’t be fully worked out till we get to them.
We did get back outside to dig some more last night after my girls wen’t off to VBS at the church they have been attending. My son has been spending a couple of days at a friend’s house and will be home tomorrow night after VBS. I think we have gotten at least in one spot down to a foot deep. Here is a picture and I left a shovel in the hole to give some perspective.
This is from a different angle than the ones I took yesterday, we are planning to go down a foot; then move down and keep that up until we have the full size. then go back and go down another foot, until we have the whole; ‘hole’ dug.
We have not been wasting the dirt/clay/stones we have been digging up they have been going for now out on the path to our garden which floods every-time it rains.
This is the farthest spot that is in the “questionable” area, my youngest daughter has been moving the wheel barrow for us said to me. “Mom, how am I suppose to get the dirt all the way if I start moving it I’ll get it stuck and then I won’t get the whole way.” Isn’t it fun when kids don’t seem to grasp something that is obvious to you? When I explained she had to go to the farthest spot and start there she looked so surprised. We have taken most of this path up about, 6 inches I’d say.
We have also been digging up a lot of stones in the process as well:
These are just the big stones we dug up yesterday, they will be going to the future house foundation probably either later tomorrow or Thursday when I can rope my son into some work. I imagine we will have lots more before we are done with this.
Now for a plant update:
This is an Elderberry, now I am not sure you can see it; but there is a ‘branch/stem’ that has no green on it on the right side of the plant. That is the original stem, just a twig really, I planted this fella and it’s “twin” back in April when they both only looked like twigs. They seems to be doing very well now, I am wondering if they will produce any fruit this next year. Now I do have to admit I did give both of them a fertilizer stake after I planted them, which is probably why they are growing so well. I just wanted to make sure they got a good start. This one is not growing off the original stem and I am considering cutting it off. Instead it is sending out new stems, 3 at last count and they are just shooting up. I know this plant is considered a bush, but considering the speed it is growing at I wonder how big they will get.
This is the other Elderberry and as you can see it is growing off the original stem, but it is sending out an additional branch as well. I am so glad these are doing so well, I am thinking of getting some pictures of my berry bushes I planted over by our house site, maybe I’ll post them tomorrow.
Well I’m heading out to dig some more as the rain has stopped here for now.
Be Well and Blessed Be…