Friday, July 31, 2009

Septic Plan

One of the challenges with our land is that the ground water is high (apparently this is true just about everywhere around here...) necessitating a very tall septic mound. The land came with a septic design that had already been done that would result in a NINE FOOT HUMP!!

Luckily for us, some of the code requirements have changed since that design was made, and we learned that we could use a newer technology system called a Presby system that will result in a less tall hump (Maybe more like seven feet). So, we asked the engineers to re-design, and here is what they are coming up with...

So that big rectangle in the center is the septic system, and the little square to the right of it is the proposed house. You can click on this image to see it larger.

Our strategy for the house to not be overwhelmed by the hump, is that we are going to raise the foundation so that the first floor is at the same level as the top of the hump, and then to build a field stone retaining wall at the edge of the mound.

I have been researching about ways to disguise the hump with landscaping , etc. You cannot plant just anything on your hump! No veggies, no trees, no "water-loving plants" that might put roots down and disrupt the system. The best thing to plant is grass.

So my plan is to plant a grass and wildflower pasture on the hump! I have always really loved wild grass fields - so I was delighted to learn this!

I am now in the process of gathering wild grass and flower seeds from the field across the street from where we are living now - the grasses are all in full fruit - and plan to plant them on the hump. Will this work? I have no idea, but I don't see why it shouldn't?

A lovely side effect of this endeavor, is that I am spending more time wandering around in the field in a very Zen state as I commune with the plants and gather their seeds. Pumpy loves it, too! I think she is rabbit hunting - a very Zen activity for a dog - but then dogs are always pretty Zen as they tend to live always in the moment...

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Landowners - Yay!

It's official. As of this past Thursday, we are in fact owner's of this 28.8 acres of land!! We do not have the deed in our hands yet, but we have been assured by our lawyer, that the deal is closed.

So here is our land.

This is how we got it with the area for a house and septic system already cleared by the previous owner. But we have a different idea for the house location, so this will require some additional clearing.

One of our favorite features of the land is the brook which is kind of down the hill at the back of the property as seen in the photo above. From the main clearing, we can hear the brook burbling.

Julie came by for a visit, and said that we were in "Shangri-La"!

And here is another photo of the brook after the nor'easter we had on Friday which dumped 3 inches of rain in some areas. She is not so much burbling as roaring in this one!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Landowners? - almost...

OK - so today was our closing on the land purchase. Dean & I arrived at the lawyer's office at our appointed time, with bank check in hand to learn that the seller's lawyer (who holds his power of attorney and would be signing for him) was not going to be making it today...WTF!!?! I thought all of the parties involved were supposed to be at these closings...

So, we did all our signing, and paid the purchase price. Tomorrow - the seller's lawyer will do her part of the signing and then later in the day, the deed will be filed with the registry and finally it will be official.

But that's not all...

Later this evening, we got some more disappointing news: The backhoe that Dean had made a verbal contract to purchase - and had just had a bank check cut for - and had arranged a pick-up for, etc - has been sold. The guy who is selling phoned to say that someone paid him cash just today and so it is sold. So much for verbal contracts... Bummer!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Good Water

Here is the well as it stands at present.

The pump was installed and we were able to get a water sample to be tested. We got the test results this week.

The water is basically good - there are higher levels of iron and manganese than the Nashoba Board of Health allows - but these are considered non-toxic. It is recommended that we install a filter for these, as they can affect water taste and stain laundry if left in the water. The great news is that they found no "bad" stuff - like bacteria, giardia, arsenic, or nuclear waste - so that is great!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Progress report

The well has been drilled. They hit water at just about 300 feet. Mike estimated that the water was flowing at about 20 gal per minute - apparantly this is very good. Yay!

The well pump has been installed, and we should be able to get a water sample for testing this week. Once that is done, we can close on the land purchase and apply for a building permit.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Drilling a well

The one contingency in our Purchase & Sale is that the site must have good water, so the first thing that needs to be done is to have a well drilled. Here comes the drill rig. This truck/machine costs $600,000!

They started yesterday and made it through the bedrock at 60-80 feet. A typical well can be 300 - 600 feet in depth. We get charged by how deep they have to drill to find water.

Our guy - Mike Sullivan - expects to finish the job today. It is pouring rain where we are.

It rained pretty much the entire month of June here in the Northeast. I was hoping for a shift in July, but the first two days have continued in the same weather pattern. Makes me feel grateful that my work takes place indoors!