I have made a piece of garden art from a length of tree branch (gumtree)
about 8" (200mm)wide and 12"(300mm)tall. I want to stand it up in the
flower bed of the garden. To hold it in place I was going to drill a
hole up the centre of the bottom and place it over a steel rod stuck in
the ground. What nifty suggestions have you for weather proofing or rot
proofing the base where it touches the ground?. I don't want to use any
The top will have a roof-like protection.
I'm interested in seeing what other say about it, but one thing I've
been told is that water likes to leach right up the branch fibers, so
I'd try very hard to to seal off that bottom end. Including the drilled
hole. Do you consider paint or something similar to be a chemical in
I figure you know it can't last forever but you might be interested in
the story of this carving. After 16 years of repairing rot, they're
probably going to give up and cast it in metal. It's a beautiful piece
and we're grateful we were around during it's first incarnation.
I know you requested no chemicals but where's the fun in that?
One possibility that might pass as acceptable is to soak the
butt end in borax solution, harmless to people and animals but
deadly to insects and fungus.
Dissolve all the 40 mule team borax that will go into solution
in a couple of gallons of water and set the butt in a five gallon bucket
with the solution and let soak for several weeks.
That would probably gain you a few extra years.
On Tue, 17 Feb 2009 19:19:36 -0600, Dave Balderstone
...emphasize "...don't let it touch the ground!" Hold it up a couple
of inches...get yourself a couple of tubes of silicone and apply
liberally to the end grain...let it dry and do it again...be ready to
re-apply whatever finish is on the upper portion at intervals,
hopefully before it gets damaged by sun and water. Bugs need entry
points, make sure they are filled and no bugs...easier said than done.
After reading the last couple of contributions I went to the local
gardening shop and bought a terracotta pot saucer about the right
diameter and have since turned it upside down and siliconed my work of
art on to it. It works really well!
The colour blends in and the flange of the saucer looks like a little
pedestal and most importantly, it keeps the wood about an inch above the
So thanks for all your thoughts on this subject which lead me to a very
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