After a couple decades of
grass trimming with gasoline powered trimmers and applying weed killer, (Round-Up) to the edges of the milky quartz
rocks that line our drive way, front shrubbery and yard flower beds, it was
time to relocate those large rocks. Those rocks were hauled from the
Pee Dee River area of Anson County, NC using an ole 1973 GMC Sierra Custom
1/2 ton truck that looked like it had been trapped in a swarm of giant mutant moths that
had carbide teeth and the ole truck appeared to have lost the battle. That truck
another life was used as a farm truck that hauled nitrogen fertilizer and
other caustic chemicals that brought about a serious erosion of the
trucks bed and fender wells.
Milky quartz rocks has been one of my favorite minerals and crushed many
of them while camping and scouting for Native American Indian artifacts looking for
gold deposits of which gold veins
and flakes tend to be left in the
cracks and crevices of said quartz rocks, not your normal placer gold
deposits. I have found pockets within
the quartz rocks that also contained excellent shaped clear quartz crystals of various
sizes. Anson County was mined pretty heavy in the mid 1800s for gold before the
Rush of 1848. We have a place here named
"The Gold Mine Pond" that
gold bearing quartz rock was mined and were processed using heavy steel rock
crushing cylinders to pulverize the gold bearing ore into powder for the
extraction of the gold flakes. There are several places within our
town and County that placer gold was panned and sent to the US Mint in Charlotte,
NC for coinage before the Civil War broke out. Here is an exert
concerning gold in Anson County, NC found at North Carolina State Archives,
Carolina Observer, Fayetteville, NC written on June 12, 1823:
Gold Mine In the county of Anson, N. C. two miles from Rocky river, and
about thirty five miles from this place, there has been recently discovered
an extensive Gold Mine; in excavating which, twelve workmen are now employed
with very considerable success. We have conversed with a gentleman who a few
days since visited this mine; from him we learn the ore is exceedingly pure,
and sells readily in its crude state, at 91 cents the penny-weight.
While he was present, one piece was dug up weighing forty ounces,
equal to $340 40 cts. One other piece had previously been found weighing
twenty-two ounces, equal to $728. Gold is not found deeper than than three
and a half feet below the surface. There is a small creek running directly
through this mine, the bottom of which is covered with millions of small
particles of gold glittering through the running stream, presents a very
interesting and beautiful appearance.
As usual, I got side tracked talking about the gold bearing milky quartz
rock of which I found numerous small deposits of small gold (flakes) in some of
those quartz rocks I used for landscaping purposes but it was time to give
a fresh look to the yard. I took sequence pixs back in 1989 when the rocks were brought in
by yours truly using a Nikon F2AS 35MM camera but have not taken the
time to try and locate the slides and/or prints to digitize and will use a
few pixs I took while the stones were still in place and after the fact.
Above pix of Johnny Hildreth, friend and neighbor now (deceased) with a
few hand tools to do a plumbing repair for me. Some of those
milky quartz rocks weighed several hundred pounds and it is hard to believe
I moved them without hydraulic assistance. I should have sought some
type of mental health counseling before, during and after moving all that
heavy tonnage of rock!
Pink dogwood and azaleas in bloom March 28, 2012 prior to starting this
project. Cutting back the large White Oak tree that has grown and
canopied itself above the roof is on my To Do List also. See
T & D Tree Service for that project.
The dogwood tree has sparse blooms on it and started dying back in the fall
and couldn't save it. It did not produce any buds in April 2013 and
will cut it down.
Another pix before relocating the stones on 05-23-12. There was a
flower bed of tulips, etc. adjacent the rocks but the deer saw to it to keep
them cut back to where they did not reproduce the following spring they were
planted. Also, the poor high dollar topsoil that Jim Hill Sand and Gravel Company
provided would barely grow weeds.
The ole cliché, "Work smarter not harder"
somehow must have finally gotten embedded in my brain since I enlisted the help of
long time friend and hunting buddy Randy Steele of Cason's Old Field, NC to
use his tractor which has a front end loader and a box scrape attached to
the tractor's three point hitch and power take off unit. I did not
take sequence pixs but will post what I took. I do know that it was
all I could physically do to keep up with Randy's fast pace using the tractor; e.g., helping to
roll, maneuver and lift the smaller stones into the front end loader bucket
to have a fully loaded bucket. It took about 3 to 4 hours the first
morning to get more than half the heavier section of rocks relocated to our lower dirt
driveway of which I wanted a backstop, berm or barrier to prevent unwanted small
ATVs and dirt bikes from using our private driveway to access the adjacent
land. We have a locked chain at the end of the paved street which is a
dead end road but people do not respect other peoples property and privacy!
It took a few hours another day to finish moving the rocks and doing some
landscaping with the front end loader and the box scraper. Randy
operates the tractor hydraulic controls with precision and great ease.
The above is a serious barrier and don't think there will be any small
vehicle traffic going over it.
Pix of the yard without the quartz rocks on 05-23-12 and Randy leveled
and transitioned the drive way and yard area
very well. The dead tree will be removed later.
Randy blended the driveway and yard pretty good with the box scrape.
Another pix after the quartz rocks were removed. The Silver Maple tree on
the right is severely diseased with some type of fungus covering and
damaging the upper portion of the tree causing it to die and will be removed later as well.
Next on my To Do List was
cutting down the dead and dying Silver Maple trees at the end of our
driveway and got started after one of our Road Trips to the
Whistle Stop Cafe in Juliette, Georgia on June 20, 2012.
It was touch and go on the tree to the left since it was leaning very badly
toward the utility pole and certainly didn't want to interrupt our power,
cable and telephone services. I contacted Progress Energy Carolinas in
Raleigh, NC via telephone and
asked if they would send one of their crew out and take a look and see about
cutting the tree down since it was only 30 feet or less from their power
pole of which the service representative stated they would but that was talk
only...no show! The dead maple tree limbs below, looks like a pair of
slingshot prong for Goliath.....grin if you must!
My tools for this job were a Husqvarna Farm model 55 chain saw with an 18
inch bar, one (1) ton chain drive come-a-long, Little Giant ladder and
several chains and the little Ford Ranger truck to be used as a
Click on thumbnails for a larger screen view:
Above pix after cutting and hauling the trees off. There were a
couple glitches getting started of which one was the chain saw pull cord
assembly frame broke and luckily one of our Lawn Tractor Sales and Service shops
had a spare in stock and had to spend about 60 plus bucks to get the
I cut the Maple trees in large sections once I got them on the ground and
the Ford Ranger with a 4.0 liter engine had a little difficulty pulling the
largest stump section down the dead end road onto our lower dirt driveway where
I rolled the stumps and log sections down an embankment out of the
way. I didn't have time to wait on someone to come and haul the cut
down trees off for the firewood since I have been through that before.
We will and have already lost some morning shade from those trees and curb eye appeal but
they needed to go. I plan to have the stumps ground down during the
Winter months when a large White Oak tree gets trimmed back by a
This portion of our yard project was finished on June 20, 2012 and will
wait on the tree service to trim the large White Oak tree back during the
upcoming Winter months, cut down
another dead tree and grind the two Maple stumps.
I used T & D Tree Service on
03-06-13 to trim the large White Oak tree and cut down a dead Red Oak tree.
Click on the T & D Tree Service hyperlink above for the complete short
After the tree stump removal, the front two gutter drainage lines will be
replaced and hopefully get some grass growing again.
Web posted by Bill aka Mickey Porter on 03-07-13.
Pix taken of the side and back yard area on April 21, 2013 of which we
had a very late Spring this year due to the cold temperatures. Things
are greening up very fast now.
Web page updated on 04-21-13 by Bill aka Mickey Porter