Bamboo: From Trellis to Fencing

Central Library was hopping on Sunday and not just because it’s a great place to check out books and media.  Puwen Lee had conspired with Lynn Westergren to design a fence for the part of the Library garden we call “the berm,” which borders part of the tennis courts.  This area needed a little protection, but not so much that visitors would have trouble seeing the veggies growing behind.  Using Arlington’s abundant free resource—bamboo—Lynn and Puwen came up with a plan that required a table saw, electric drills, wire, and bamboo in several lengths.

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As is often the case with Plot Against Hunger, an amazing crew of volunteers showed up to cut, drill and assemble the fence.  Kristin Thompson set about measuring and marking bamboo poles (harvested by AFAC’s “panda brigade” earlier this spring) into three lengths: 18, 21 and 24 inches.

Kristin and Dick practice measuring twice to cut once...

Kristin and Dick practice measuring twice to cut once…

Puwen operated the table saw, cutting the marked poles.

Last year, it was a trellis.  This year, a fence.

Last year, it was a trellis. This year, a fence.

Eddie and Janet Viveiros took the freshly cut lengths,  measured again, and drilled holes in them so they could be wired together.

Janet and Eddie check an assembly.

Janet and Eddie check an assembly.

Lynn Westergren assembled the pieces with wire that had been precut by Dick Bauder.

Lynn practices the second step in design/build...

Lynn practices the second step in design/build…

Once the group had three pole or brace pieces assembled, Puwen cut four 40 inch lengths for the rails of the fence and we all proceeded to the berm to see what the fence would look like installed.

Eddie has a look at the first section of the installation.

Eddie has a look at the first section of the installation.

Eddie and Lynn did most of the installation and decided a few adjustments in the length of the poles could be made. The fence prototype looked good; rustic, creative, and of course, made with abundant, free, local materials.

Multiple sections of the growing fence...

Multiple sections of the growing fence…

Meanwhile, Audrey Morris left the construction to others and planted new lettuce seedlings.

Audrey wanted to leave construction to others.

Audrey wanted to leave construction to others.

What a garden, and what great volunteers!

Fence builders hard at work.

Fence builders hard at work.

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