Having a garden is more than simply having gorgeous flowers, a lush green lawn and shady trees; it's about creating a magical environment that allows you to escape from your daily life to a place of repose. One way you can achieve such an environment is via garden ornaments, and you don't need to rely on the ones offered in stores. You can make your own using a mould and mixing your own cement.
Take equal amounts of gravel and sharp sand and mix them together evenly in a mixing trough. Scoop three large shovelfuls of the mixed gravel and sand into a wheelbarrow.
Add one shovelful of cement. Mix thoroughly with a broomstick. Slowly add water in cups to the mixture, very gradually. Each time you add a cup of water, mix the substances vigorously. Keep adding water until your mixed cement is creamy but still easy to pour.
Test the concrete to make sure it is the right consistency. Dip a trowel into it and remove it. Look at the lines made by the trowel. If they disappear immediately, you've added to much water and need to fix it by adding small amounts of mixed gravel and sand along with cement in the original three to one ratio. If the lines of the trowel start to disappear slightly but essentially remain in place, your cement is of the right consistency and it is ready to use.
- DennyCraft Moulds Hints and Tips: How to Mix Concrete
- "Building Garden Ornaments: 24 Do-It-Yourself Projects to Accent Any Setting"; Creative Publishing international; 2000
- Your ratio of gravel and mixed sand to cement should always be in a three to one ratio.
- If you're making a smaller garden ornament, you don't have to use gravel but can simply mix concrete that's four parts sand and one part water. The gravel makes the mixture stronger, but that's not always vital for smaller ornaments.
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