The Perth area, in Lanark County, our new home town, has a very different geology than Muskoka.
[A Short Geological History of Lanark County] This means different gardening style and different foliage. Still a mixed forest, but a range of wetlands, shallow soil, lots of cedar, dead or dying elm trees (Dutch Elm disease, hitting E. Canada in the 40's) and limestone that rears up in protest to its burial.
|Scott Dobson explains his work|
Our lot #2 is undeveloped and as I walk it I realize how much work went into collecting all of the stones to create our open lawns. Also, how many different types of heritage fence we have.
During the recent Arts Tour, we met a man who builds and repairs split rail fences and creates lawn designs. They are as much art as a brilliant recycling.
Scott Dobson was explaining that there was some competition from these transplanted Scots, to invent a new style of fence to accommodate the shallow soil of this region. In fact, the fence style was patented, hence the term 'patent rail fence'. Farmers battled to profit from their ingenuity. The fencing is strong and lasts a long time, as well there is no digging into the ground!
|Different fence style models|
Each domesticated animal needed a different height fence, of course.
Rather like the publish or perish mindset, patent rail fences were guarded and men like Closs wanted the fame and glory of a 'patent' fence. You needed a permit to build his type of fence. Others, Patton, McUvan, Drafer, also created variations of the split rail classic patented rail fence.
The Eastern White Cedar fence lasts many years. It is resistant to bugs, rot and weather. The perfect medium after farmers cleared the soil and had cedar wood lying around.
If you want to build such a fence, there are directions on-line. Click on the photos and you will download a PDF file. Scott is an expert. We are hiring him, and his crew, to create something for us. We are looking for 150' of fence to finish off our front, and create a landscaping treatment that will fit into the community.
Scott is quite famous in these parts!
By Lynn Saxberg, Postmedia News
These are heritage pieces all about this land, that reveal the nature of the Scots and Irish that settled here. It has character.
|fencing allows for the undulating hills|
|Ye olde farm house|