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This is our Railroad in the Garden.

It is not a model train layout. There are almost no buildings, just tracks winding through the garden.

 Ali and her grandpa built the Allied Logging and Lumber Yards railroad during the last several years.

 Most Saturdays in the spring and summer are spent at the local garden centers searching for annuals. Pink ones are best.

 

Ali likes planting flowers, picking bouquets for her grandma and playing with trains.

Her grandpa likes raking pin needles, trimming the grass and playing with Ali.

The yellow engines are girls. The blue ones are boys.

Barbie and Ken are exactly 1/29th scale. 

Beaney Boppers are 1/22.5 scale

Any engine can be used to pull any combination of cars as long as there is a gondola for kitty.

(ABOVE) Ali high balls a center cab switcher. She uses a Digitrax wireless throttle to blow the horn. The little switcher has a very loud sound system. "Awsome, Grandpa" she exclaims.

(RIGHT) Ali is adjusting some new plantings. Note that here the tracks leave the bounds on the garden edging and sour above the yard. This is a favorite spot for Ali and her friends to lay in the grass and get a close up view of the passing trains.

The ALLY railroad wanders along the edge of our yard, mostly hidden by the flowers, but suddenly snaking it's way out to the edge of the lawn only to disappear again. The construction begins with a small tiller. The tilled area is shaped and the track path is leveled and packed. Porous weed stop material covers the entire area and plastic edging material is installed. All power and water trunk lines are attached to the edging then electrical feeders and drip lines are run into the garden. An extra strip of non porous weed stop is applied under the track. Ballast, decorative rocks, colored mulch and treated wood retaining walls cover the entire garden before planting. The track floats in the ballast just like the real thing, About once a year I fill a small bucket and replenish the ballast and level any areas that may have settled. Since there are no poured concrete areas or constructed roadbed, the process goes quickly. Each year I add another section or change an existing section. Changes are easy, involving only a hoe or shovel to complete.

Alysa, her two uncles and her grandpa helped out the local garden center and LGB dealer by building a display for the annual train show.

Over a hundred live plants decorated the layout. 

The display was 12 feet by 15 feet and contained two levels, two bridges, a siding and a crossing.
About a dozen teenybopper dolls rode the trains and climbed over the layout. 
We ran two 0-4-0 steam engines, a track cleaning engine, an FA and a Mikado. The sound system on the LGB Mikado attracted a lot of people to the display.

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