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Construction for Landscape Architecture by Jamie Liversedge, Robert Holden

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Mortar

Mortar holds brickwork together, and allows for variation in the size of bricks when laying courses. It is a mixture of either sand and cement or sand and lime—both with water. Lime gives workability, while cement gives frost resistance.

Lime mortar is made by burning limestone (calcium carbonate) in a limekiln in order to drive off the carbon (as carbon dioxide) to produce "quicklime" (calcium oxide). The carbon dioxide is given off as a greenhouse gas. The quicklime is then "slaked," i.e. mixed with water, in order to produce lime putty (calcium hydroxide). Alternatively, when mixed with less water this produces dry hydrated lime which can be crushed and bagged for making into lime putty. Lime putty is matured for two to three months ...

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