Large Hypertufa or Concrete Leaf – Reinforcement Options?

What Can Be Used to Add Inner Reinforcement to Large Hypertufa and Concrete Leaf Castings? I received an email from Jill M. asking me: Hi Claudia, I get your emails about gardening, concrete projects and many other things. I have a time sensitive question that I am hoping you can address either personally or in one of your mass mailings. There … [Read more...]

How Much Liquid Fortifier To Use In Hypertufa & Concrete Recipes

Admixes? Liquid Fortifiers? Acrylic Strengtheners?What Is Their Purpose and How Much To Add To Your Hypertufa and Concrete Recipes I get emails quite often asking me about "liquid fortifiers" and exactly what are they, what do they "do", and how much should be put into a 'tufa or concrete recipe. So, today I'll share what I do know about using … [Read more...]

Large Concrete Faux Rock Stepping Stones – How to Make Them?

How to Make Super-Large Concrete Stepping Stones for a Walkway Judy V. emailed the other day and asked: While I have made hypertufas and concrete leaf castings with great success I am about to try faux rock concrete slabs [stepping stones] for use in a walkway. Some of these will be close to 4 feet in width so I will have to make them in place. I … [Read more...]

Concrete Calculator – How To Figure Ingredient Quantities

How to Calculate Amount of Portland Cement and Other Ingredients for Garden Art Projects I received an email the other day from Tess asking me: Hi! We are going to try to make a 4 ft diameter millstone garden fountain out of hypertufa. I believe your recipe for the Hypertufa Recipe With Fiber Mesh for Added Strength is the way to go. Any idea … [Read more...]

Where To Find Silica Fume & Poly Fibers

Sometimes These 2 Ingredients are Hard to Get Your Hands On I often get asked by many hypertufa and concrete garden art enthusiasts where to find "silica fume" and "poly fibers", also referred to as "fiber mesh". Depending where you live, it may or may not be very easy to lay your hands on this stuff. … [Read more...]

Portland Cement Problems After Skim Coating A Patio Slab

Let's Learn About the Right vs. Wrong Way to Resurface Existing Concrete Patio Surfaces I received this email from Trisha asking me: I have encountered a problem on my patio. After much research your website was the only one that made it clear there was a difference between concrete and cement. We have a slab in our back yard (like a river rock … [Read more...]

Exploding Hollow Concrete Spheres!!

How Temperature Caused a Hollow Sphere Project to Literally Blow Up! I received an email from Sue, who wanted to share with me this rather interesting bit of info: You are my hero! I've been after the instructions on duplicating Little & Lewis spheres for a year! I did some on my own and they exploded on my driveway (cold ball from house, 90 … [Read more...]

Concrete & Hypertufa Leaf Fountain Making Tips

A Reader Asks Construction Questions About ADecorative Cast Leaf Fountain I received an email from Jan R. asking me: Hi there, I want to make a hypertufa leaf or concrete leaf fountain. After the leaves are made how would I form the fountain and to what? Got any ideas? Thank you for your time. … [Read more...]

Concrete Recipes – Is "Homemade" Better Than A Pre-Mix?

Concrete Pre-Mix Products vs. A "Make It From Scratch" Recipe I received an email from "Stoner" asking me: I have been using a regular pre bagged "sand mix" cement for my concrete leaves. Is there a benefit to using something that I mix together myself ? Thanks. Stoner My reply: Hi Stoner: Well, not necessarily. I mean, if you are very … [Read more...]

Concrete Reacts Differently With Various Metals

Be Aware Of How Portland Cement Or Mortar In Your Recipe Will React To Various Metals I received a question from a crafter who had read my post about using hypertufa to skim coat vertical walls. She has a metal shed that she'd like to use the technqiue on and wondered if it would work in her situation. I told her I'd found and saved some … [Read more...]