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Plowing and the gravel driveway

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  • Plowing and the gravel driveway

    With all the snow flying (even though we didn't get a SINGLE FLAKE), I've been contemplating spring and our poor driveway at the barn that got horribly abused this winter. The owner of the barn just recently put down a fresh load of gravel for the drive, which looked great! And then the snow came, and when the driveway got plowed by the staff? Yep, they pushed alllllllllllllllllllllllllllll that gravel and snow ALL over the lawn. In giant heaping piles, in little piles.... everywhere!

    Any suggestions on WHAT we are going to do this spring when everything melts? I don't know how we're going to get the gravel off the driveway without a) killing the staff or b) killing the grass. I don't want to leave the rocks there for too long either, I don't want a bunch of dead grass come spring!
    Eventing-A-Gogo: Adventures of a Barefoot Event Horse and her Human
    The Reeling: An Unexpected Mareventure

  • #2
    Push the gravel back. Proper approach is to regrade and recover, but we have a small gravel parking area, and the neighbor was nice enough to plow it for us during a big storm. He set the plow too low and moved the gravel to the side. In spring, when it is soft and wet, we rake it back. It is such a small area, and just for our cars, it is not worth it to hire someone.

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    • #3
      Ah, the joys of a gravel driveway! If you have a tractor with a back blade, angle the blade so that it is pulling the gravel towards the center of the driveway. Put the blade so it is just touching the ground and drive forward, you may have to repeat several times. The best time to do it is when the ground is still frozen. Good luck!

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Ritazza View Post
        With all the snow flying (even though we didn't get a SINGLE FLAKE), I've been contemplating spring and our poor driveway at the barn that got horribly abused this winter. The owner of the barn just recently put down a fresh load of gravel for the drive, which looked great! And then the snow came, and when the driveway got plowed by the staff? Yep, they pushed alllllllllllllllllllllllllllll that gravel and snow ALL over the lawn. In giant heaping piles, in little piles.... everywhere!

        Any suggestions on WHAT we are going to do this spring when everything melts? I don't know how we're going to get the gravel off the driveway without a) killing the staff or b) killing the grass. I don't want to leave the rocks there for too long either, I don't want a bunch of dead grass come spring!
        What I do might not suit you, but:

        When plowing snow, I set my blade about 1" above the gravel. That removes all snow except one 1".

        One day of sun and the 1" will be gone, all without damage to the gravel.

        1" will not give you any problems before melting unless your road is very steep.

        CSSJR

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        • Original Poster

          #5
          Originally posted by cssutton View Post
          What I do might not suit you, but:

          When plowing snow, I set my blade about 1" above the gravel. That removes all snow except one 1".

          One day of sun and the 1" will be gone, all without damage to the gravel.

          1" will not give you any problems before melting unless your road is very steep.

          CSSJR

          I did try to explain that to my staff at the time, not to put the plow down all the way... but their English is not so good and they didn't seem to quite get the idea. And then, of course, we had another plow guy do it the next time, and HE took lots of gravel off too! Let's just hope for no more snow until spring....
          Eventing-A-Gogo: Adventures of a Barefoot Event Horse and her Human
          The Reeling: An Unexpected Mareventure

          Comment


          • #6
            Give them some stiff toothed rakes and square point shovels to fix it when the ground drys out. They probably won't do it again after that.
            www.HistoricHousePreservation.com

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            • #7
              We had this problem every year at our last farm....a power broom was the answer to moving all the rocks back onto the drive...

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              • #8
                What the heck is a "power broom"?

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                • #9
                  When scraping shoulders up to level with new pavement, have you not seen those in use by the road construction crews?

                  They use them to sweep excess dirt off the pavement.

                  A huge roller brush.

                  I suppose you can rent one although I never thought of it.

                  In the construction industry, they are called angle brooms.

                  CSSJR
                  Last edited by cssutton; Feb. 7, 2010, 04:42 PM. Reason: Added angle brooms.

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                  • #10
                    My small size gravel ends up on the lawn, and I do the shoveling, so it's not a plow goofing up. It hasn't hurt the lawn, I kind of think it helps because where the lawn meets the driveway the lawn tends to get too wet and the gravel that transferred to the lawn helps the lawn drain.

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                    • #11
                      sorry I didn't get back here until now....here's a short video of a power broom, it's great for getting gravel off lawns, etc:

                      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wi53R2vPnOo

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                      • #12
                        Neighbor's kids! We hire out that job!

                        Our driveway always ends up moved around - sometimes you can use the tractor to spread the gravelly snowbank back onto the driveway to melt there on a nice sunny day, but usually you just have to deal with it in the spring. Leaving an inch of snow is a great idea, but if it snows a lot, or is very cold it does not always melt and then you end up with a layer of really solid ice. You sort of have to pick your poison.

                        That power broom looks awesome.

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                        • #13
                          Back when I had a gravel driveway and a plough service, they used to plough all the gravel onto the lawn during the winter.

                          The same guy also ran the lawn service, so every spring he would charge us to rake that damned gravel off the lawn and back onto the driveway.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I hate raking gravel in the spring. We have beautiful thick gravel held in by railroad ties, so conventional plowing is Out.Of.The.Question.

                            The way we manage it is my husband starts with the front end loader, compacting the snow with the loader by backing up and smoothing the snow with the bottom of the loader until we have a solid packed base sticking the gravel down. Then he can switch to the back blade for as long as that base holds up. We do get an ice rink when things begin to warm up, but there's not much of a way around that here unless you have pavement and plow right to the pavement.
                            ::With age comes wisdom. Apparently "wisdom" weighs about 40 pounds.::

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                            • #15
                              WOW! KCGold, that is pretty slick. Do you have any idea if it is expensive?

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                              • #16
                                That power broom reminds of those combs for men with built-in razors, so you could comb your hair and give yourself a haircut at the same time. I'd expect a lot of bald spots on my lawn if I used that

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