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Sun Jun 9, 2019, 06:32 PM

Does anyone have any experience with garden wall replacement?

My old landscaping timbers are finally giving way (they are at least 25 years old) and my replacement ones aren't as big...it's making me rethink wooden timbers at all...

So then I came across this: https://itsrecycled.com/site-amenities-railroad-ties-6x8/

Has anyone done this, or know someone who has?

16 replies, 646 views

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Response to Baltimike (Original post)

Sun Jun 9, 2019, 06:39 PM

1. My dad built garden walls out of radom stones and no mortar. He just

fit the stones together like a puzzle. They held up for at least 45 years without any rebuilding.

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Response to applegrove (Reply #1)

Sun Jun 9, 2019, 06:46 PM

2. I don't think I could lay stone in such a small from garden nt

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Response to Baltimike (Reply #2)

Sun Jun 9, 2019, 06:51 PM

4. Those wood railway ties are full of creosote or something. We had them

as steps at our cottage. Go for plastic. Much safer.

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Response to Baltimike (Original post)

Sun Jun 9, 2019, 06:49 PM

3. My only question on old RR ties is the creosote they were soaked in.

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Response to Baltimike (Original post)

Sun Jun 9, 2019, 07:40 PM

5. old RR ties are treated with preservatives, they are fine for landscape but I would be careful

about planting edibles near them. in the old days they were wonderful heavy oak, made great fence posts at corners and H braces, now they are pine and may be half rotted by the time they hit the landscape market.

I have to laugh at the price, $99! Wow! I have almost 7 miles of track that runs through the ranch, and they have always let me have all I needed for fencing when they were replacing them. Maybe I should be selling them!

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Response to Kali (Reply #5)

Sun Jun 9, 2019, 08:47 PM

6. We get them for about 5 bucks apiece


delivered, even

Problem is...they do tend to rot out inside, and the snakes love em. we have copperheads and rattlers around the house in the woods,
as well as not venomous big snakes, like rat/King ones, that stop you dead in your tracks as you try to see the head or tail just to make sure.

Luckily, at this stage in our retirement, we don't use the railroad tie steep steps, and don't have to mess around with the driveway RR ties, our handy man does.
But a replacement option is always nice to have handy, they do rot eventually, esp. in the rainy season.

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Response to dixiegrrrrl (Reply #6)

Sun Jun 9, 2019, 10:11 PM

7. I just read that ad and they are plastic!

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Response to Kali (Reply #7)

Mon Jun 10, 2019, 12:19 AM

9. Plastic....in the hot sun....100,00 each..


and people will buy them anyhow.

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Response to dixiegrrrrl (Reply #9)

Mon Jun 10, 2019, 08:31 AM

11. composite plastic...in the hot sun...

at roughly 65.00 per if you shop around.

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Response to Baltimike (Original post)

Sun Jun 9, 2019, 10:17 PM

8. I think none of us read the link very carefully...

I never even knew there was such a thing as a plastic RR tie! I went looking and sure enough...https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Railroad_tie#Plastics

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Response to Kali (Reply #8)

Mon Jun 10, 2019, 06:51 AM

10. I posted a link to them in the OP

There is a British show I love called "Love your Home and Garden" and in the first episode of 2018, they did a raised garden for a boy in a wheelchair. The plastic ties *they* used come to your measurements and just assembled sort of like linking logs. I was looking for an American spin on it, because what they were doing was NO maintenance, not just low maintenance.

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Response to Baltimike (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 01:30 PM

12. As applegrove said, railroad ties are treated with creosote and not desirable in a garden

We had some that were left here on the farm (long story) and used them to make a raised bed around a tree whose roots were exposed. They worked but when I needed the raised beds nearer the house redone, I bought limestone boulders and had an expert install them. It was expensive and would not be practical in a small yard.

I like the idea of these DIY formed concrete pieces - on this page the man is making raised beds, but you could make walls out of them, too: https://manabouttools.com/make-concrete-garden-boxes/

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Response to csziggy (Reply #12)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 01:58 PM

13. I would be using ones that aren't *actual* rail road ties, but made from recycled plastic

like the link says

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Response to Baltimike (Reply #13)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 02:02 PM

14. Whoops - sorry, missed the recycled part!

Those would be good!

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Response to csziggy (Reply #14)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 02:03 PM

15. LOL. No prob. Lots of folks did. nt

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Response to Baltimike (Reply #15)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 02:07 PM

16. We used recycled plastic for the floor and rails on our deck

After twelve years they look exactly the same as the day they went in - except for two long spans that are sagging a little. That was just bad design, not a fault of the product.

Here in Florida, I wouldn't use black, though. Our deck is a light gray. Black would be too hot to walk on and would soak up the heat all day.

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