Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Seeking The Water Table At Twig Forest
(This post is a respite from the fair)
Last week, Junior and his best bud, T. went with me to Twig Forest. This new property is still a mystery to me and I had two specific goals in mind.
GOAL ONE: Actually drive into the property for the first time. This would involve trimming and chainsawing a little more to allow the Jeep into the linear rows of pines.
This was accomplished without taking a living tree. I had picked a spot where two planted pines had died some time ago. All I had to do was cut them off near the ground so the Jeep could roll over their stumps. I worked at this while the boys hunted each other in the palmettos. They had brought their paintball guns and the rapid fire sounds of the guns were usually followed by yells of "Ow, Owww, Okay you got me, Owwww!"
I cleared the cut branches away and got back in the Jeep. There's a ditch with no culvert that separates the dirt road from the property. I slipped it into 4WD and climbed through the ditch and into the pines. The Wrangler is svelte and slipping between the rows of pines was not hard, but turns were interesting. I found out why the sideview mirrors are on swivels.
This goal was accomplished though, and the boys were surprised to see me drive up to the little clearing near their battle site. Wherever the Jeep is parked is a DMZ with no paintballing allowed. They moved deeper into the woods to continue.
GOAL TWO: Dig a post hole to find the water table. It was right where I suspected...about 5 feet down. There's standing tea colored water in the swamp at the rear of the property, so I knew I would not have to go far. For you soil scientists, as I dug, I passed through dark, peaty topsoil, then lighter sand, then a chocolate lab-colored clay, then sand with water seepage. I mentioned once before that I plan to drive a shallow well here by pounding a well point with sand screen down 10 feet or so. On top of this will go a pitcher pump for basic campy water service. This day was just a test dig, not a well dig.
It was a nice day, a little warm for my tastes. I relish the winter here in Pure Florida and hate to see it go.
That was a week ago. Monday was even warmer and along with blooming dogwoods and redbuds, there's one new sign of spring. I have taken off most of my winter coat (beard) and am down to a close-cropped goatee. Soon, that will go too as the thermometer rises.
This morning, I'm off to training in Starke. The training is called "Water's Journey", and it's a program that teaches kids about Florida's underground water supply. I'm really excited.
I get to work with adults all day!
Posted by R.Powers at 6:00 AM