Hypertufa for huge pots?

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brassi
Joined: 7/26/2004
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 344
Posted: Jan/27/2005 11:22 PM PST

You guys have me thinking of playing with some cement this weekend. I'm so tired of the snow, I want spring. Mike the spheres are so neat. Have your tried adding any cement tint and giving them an old look to them?
I used a tint(i mixed 3 colors together) and it gave my troughts an mossy old dirty look.
although,, as i think about it,, those sphere's would look neat as a rounded rock garden with small sedums around them. UMMMMMMMM??
Mplant
Joined: 1/26/2005
Location: Wood County, East Texas
Posts: 20
Posted: Jan/28/2005 4:17 AM PST

Hi Brassi, thanks! I have used colors on several things, but have yet to find one I'm particularly fond of. As you can see, the sphere is not a "finished" project quite yet. I put it there to see how I liked it in that spot. It is different colors from the various applications of surface fill-ins - mostly using cement left over after finishing some other project. One of these days I will give it a new slurry job for a solid color, but haven't decided what that will be just yet. I love the idea you mention, however, about a Round-Rock garden... I have several smaller ones already, and will think about making a larger one (or two), maybe with hollows to fill with plants or something. That is the fun of all this - the possibilities are all over the place
Good luck on the cement work this weekend... don't forget your mask!
Mike
BannedUser
Joined: 3/30/2007
Location:
Posts: 1690
Posted: Feb/20/2005 1:52 PM PST

Hi all, I am thinking of making a hypertufa trough, 48" x 12" x 12". Has anyone seen one this big? This will be my first one, and I am not sure if this will be too heavy or how much reinforcing I may need. Any feedback would be appreciated. Thanks!
Mplant
Joined: 1/26/2005
Location: Wood County, East Texas
Posts: 20
Posted: Feb/20/2005 2:17 PM PST

Eileen,
I made one about 16x16x16, give or take, with approx. 2" thick sides. I didn't use any reinforcing wire or anything, and I only did half and half cement and peat moss, so it is not the "typical" recipe for this stuff. But, nevertheless, it took a LOT more cement than I thought it would (about 1/2 of a 92 lb. bag) and it is quite heavy! Since I didn't use reinforcing, I have not moved it from the worktable yet (it's been about 2 mos., and I'll prob. wait another 2 before moving it... I don't want it to break in half!), but it seems like once I get it wherever I end up putting it, it's gonna stay there! lol

If you're going to make one that big, you should consider building it in place, as moving it would be quite a chore.

Good luck,
Mike
brassi
Joined: 7/26/2004
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 344
Posted: Feb/21/2005 8:15 PM PST

HI Eileen,
that is a big trough!!! Mike is right it needs to be made in place. I've made one that is about 2 1/2ft by 3ft. It's resting on old red bricks as feet. Hubs made a wooden form , it took the whole bag of portland. I used 2 types of support a friend of mine works in the steel industry and got me steel rebar pins, I used them in the bottom layer of the trough. I waited 4 hours and then went back to make the walls. In the walls I used fiberglass tape as support. I let it cure for 2 days before removing the wooden form. I used a wire brush to rough up the sides. It cured for 3 months before i planted anything in it. I then encouraged moss to grow on the sides. In this trough I have many types of sedums and Berginia.
It is heavy and hubs only moved it ONCE,!!
BannedUser
Joined: 3/30/2007
Location:
Posts: 1690
Posted: Feb/26/2005 12:03 PM PST

Thanks for your replies. Sounds like this size is going to be much too heavy.... Looks like I better scale down! I was making it this large to accommodate a herb garden on my deck, but a wooden trough with inner pots might be the direction I go in. Thanks again for the info!

Eileen B
brassi
Joined: 7/26/2004
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 344
Posted: Feb/26/2005 12:55 PM PST

I grow alot of herbs and I have lots of troughs. I can say that thymes love these cement container. Other herbs do very well in clay pots or others decorative containers. Herbs like basils,oregano's, rosemarys, parsley, scented geraniums and other herbs need more root room to grow, troughs don;t always have a deep enough bottom to accomidate them.
It sounds like a great idea-but maybe a smaller container with a nice mix of thymes in it would work better
good luck
brassi
BannedUser
Joined: 3/30/2007
Location:
Posts: 1690
Posted: Feb/27/2005 2:40 AM PST

I stumbled upon upon this site while looking for a formula for the "troughs". I know they take portland cement and peat moss but that's all I can remember. Is there a website that shows the recipe and how to make them?
Thank you for any help.
Firefly.
Mplant
Joined: 1/26/2005
Location: Wood County, East Texas
Posts: 20
Posted: Feb/27/2005 4:04 AM PST

Firefly,
The book I have gives the recipe for hypertufa as:
1 part cement
1 1/2 parts peat moss*
1 1/2 parts perlite*
Polypropylene fibers
Water

*Plain potting soil, without fertilizers, can be substituted for the peat moss/perlite combination.

Personally (and I have only made one pot) I just used half and half cement and peat moss. It took LOTS of cement, and is very heavy. Haven't tried to move it yet, so not sure of it's strength (since I didn't use any strengthening agents (perlite/polypropylene fibers) I am worried about it breaking in half, so will let it cure for probably 6 mos. before I move it.)
Good luck
Mike
Mplant
Joined: 1/26/2005
Location: Wood County, East Texas
Posts: 20
Posted: Feb/27/2005 11:07 PM PST

That sounds like a good effect! The darker would definitely add something... thanks.

Quote:
Originally posted by Ron

Remember to wear rubber gloves or the cement will burn your fingers raw...

And a MASK, too... cement is a process of hydration and will react with any moisture it can find, including in your lungs!

Mike
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