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Ludi's permaculture projects

Moody Vaden


Joined: Dec 15, 2010
Posts: 52
Location: Maryland
Excellent thread! Thank you for sharing. I look forward to follow-ups.
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Rose Pinder wrote:

What are you plans re mulch?


The electric cooperative is having all the trees under the power lines cut, so we've asked the tree crew to dump the chipper debris on our land - it's a huge pile. In the past I've used the native grass which I would cut with a sickle.
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
More wood in this hole:

Jordan Lowery
volunteer

Joined: Sep 26, 2009
Posts: 1528
Location: zone 7
    
  11
see we need a place to put more of these threads. im working on getting a camera so i can start a thread too.

great stuff btw.


The ultimate goal of farming is not the growing of crops, but the cultivation and perfection of human beings. - Masanobu Fukuoka
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Thank you. I would love to see your projects, hubert!
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Finished this bed:



I'll let it settle for awhile and then divide the old asparagus and transplant them into it. The excess soil I'll be using to make a berm along the lower end of the garden.
Jesus Martinez


Joined: Mar 07, 2011
Posts: 143
Looks great. For some reason it never occurred to me to *dig* a hole and fill it with wood, I've been doing the stack the wood and cover it method, but in my hugel bed area I've ran out of easily accessible fill dirt so I guess my next task is to just bury a bunch of logs =)
Cj Verde


Joined: Oct 18, 2011
Posts: 2964
Location: Vermont, off grid for 22 years!
    
  51
H Ludi Tyler wrote:The old vegetable garden and orchard which was killed by the drought. This area is planned for the future Asparagus Farm experiment...


The asparagus seems like a bad choice. They like water more than an orchard or garden so if they died, your setting yourself up for more death!

Are you putting in any swales or ponds?


My project thread
Agriculture collects solar energy two-dimensionally; but silviculture collects it three dimensionally.
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
The asparagus was the ONLY permanent planting which survived the drought, besides cactus. The orchard trees in the same setting died. They are ALL dead. The asparagus is alive and growing at this moment.

Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Here's a little update.

I divided asparagus plants from my original bed which is over ten years old into the new bed.





I planted some annual vegetable seeds in the bed also - fava beans, turnips, lettuce, parsley, radishes, holland greens - mulched with some old hay, and watered thoroughly:

Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
My sweet husband saving my achin' joints by excavating rocks from the kitchen garden so I can replace them with buried wood:

Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Beginning to fill the excavation with wood:

Jesus Martinez


Joined: Mar 07, 2011
Posts: 143
Tyler Ludens wrote:My sweet husband saving my achin' joints by excavating rocks from the kitchen garden so I can replace them with buried wood:



Off topic, but how much does one of those trackhoes run?
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
We rented it for $344.62 for the weekend, delivered.

Clifford Reinke


Joined: Nov 26, 2010
Posts: 122
Location: Puget Sound
    
    4
Ludi,

I just found this thread. Great idea and the pictures really help get the point across. I love following peoples progress in permaculture, I'm guessing others do too. Maybe I'll start a similar one for our place. Thanks.


Cliff (Start a rEVOLution, grow a garden)
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Thank you. I keep hoping more people will start their own threads showing their plans and projects.

Benjamin Burchall


Joined: Sep 11, 2011
Posts: 181
Location: Atlanta, GA
Wow! In that picture of the where the asparagus bed will be, you can really see how dry the soil is. It looks dry as a bone! I'm really interest to see your progress and how things go for you.
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Thanks. Yes, the soil when I dug that hole was painfully dry. We've had some rain since so things are better now. I'm rethinking the asparagus garden a bit and contemplating using the "Back to Eden" deep mulch method on the next part of it, because I have so much buried wood bed area to do in the kitchen garden, I don't think I'll have the energy to do all that digging and wood collecting for the asparagus garden. It will be interesting to see how the different methods perform.

"Back to Eden" discussion: http://www.permies.com/t/10372/permaculture/Return-Eden-free-online-film
Leila Rich
steward

Joined: May 24, 2010
Posts: 3866
Location: Wellington, New Zealand. Temperate, coastal, sandy, windy,
    
  80
In NZ the old-school gardeners used to bury a couple of trailerloads of dead calves, lambs and possums under a new asparagus bed.
Helluva water-holding capacity, let alone the nutrients!
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Ugh, I'd not enjoy picking up that much roadkill.....
Leila Rich
steward

Joined: May 24, 2010
Posts: 3866
Location: Wellington, New Zealand. Temperate, coastal, sandy, windy,
    
  80
That's a lot of flat, smelly critters! Nah, calves/lambs would have died in bulk one way or another on farms;
possums used to get gin-trapped or poisoned with cyanide. Nasty ways to go.
So much for the country idyll!
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
My kitchen garden this morning with ridiculous overgrown fava beans. I did not expect them to get over three feet tall!



Plenty of bees and native pollinators out on this warm day. Here's a bee near arugula:

osker brown


Joined: Jun 28, 2011
Posts: 146
Location: Southern Appalachia
I, too, love the smell of arugula flowers.

thanks for sharing
peace


Glorious Forest Farm
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
We had three inches of rain last night and our rainharvesting basin filled for the first time since it was dug. This is at the northeast corner of our land along the course of a seasonal stream. The basin isn't meant to hold water permanently, only long enough to let it soak in and to slow it so it doesn't become a catastrophic flood lower down on our land. We need a few more of these basins:

Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Fish for the aquaponics:



Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20


Part of the kitchen garden looking a little like a weed patch with lots of caterpillars!



Edible and ornamental water plants in the aquaponics:



Prairie garden with lots of Winecups (the red flowers) which have edible tubers. Extremely inedible Poison Hemlock in the background:


Clifford Reinke


Joined: Nov 26, 2010
Posts: 122
Location: Puget Sound
    
    4
Texas seems to be in bloom. Nice job.
Lori Crouch


Joined: Sep 26, 2011
Posts: 104
Location: Amarillo, TX.
    
    1
I'm so jealous! Nothing of mine has come up yet except a few peas.
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Thanks! We've been very fortunate to have some nice rains though the warm temperatures seemed to come especially early this year and it never got very cold. A lot of my kitchen garden plants wintered over because it was so warm.
Diane Hunt


Joined: Apr 15, 2012
Posts: 9
Location: UK at present, but go between Australia & UK, & have Canuck roots!
I clicked on your link to have a bit of a look. It is all brilliant and inspiring. Thanks for sharing! It is really great how, even when you have had to scrap ideas and restart, you have kept on keeping on. Really well done, and I am sure that after a while if not already your neighbours will start to see the difference and be inspired too.


Empowerment, not just protest. My aim is to get as many folk as poss growing non-hybrid/patented food freely everywhere! There are more of us on bottom of pyramid, so we have the power!
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Thank you. It is challenging for sure. I wish I were one of those people who can just toss plants or animals out there and they thrive,, but I'm not. Sadly all the Catfish in the aquaponics died, though apparently there are still some Bluegill. Poultry are an ongoing challenge because of predators, mostly raccoons, and are not particularly well integrated into the rest of the system. I feel my progress is glacially slow but see gradual improvement. My dreams exceed my abilities, though.

Brandis Roush


Joined: Apr 16, 2012
Posts: 37
Location: Central Minnesota
Thanks for all of the info! I am going to start a thread like this for my own homestead (not a fan of that word, but there aren't really any better than I can think of... in conversation I usually use farm, but that's not really accurate either!). I, too, have far more ideas than time or resources to impliment them, but the more I get accomplished the more energy I have to do more. It also helps that my kids are now 5 and 3, so they're a lot more independent than the last two summers. My first summer here I did a lot of gardening with a 25 lb toddler strapped to my back! But in a lot of ways I'm glad my kids limited me in the last two years, because had I had the time to do a lot those first years I wouldn't have known what I know now about permaculture, no till gardening, closed loop systems, and methods like sheet mulching and hugelkultur to increase organic matter and reduce outside water... I would have done a lot of things I would now need to undo or change.

I'm just now learning more about permaculture, though. I had resisted it before because I was worried it would up-end all I had known and done with my deep dug raised bed gardening before in my vegetable garden. I finally gave in and read Gaia's Gardens and I'm so glad I did it at this particular moment. While the bed shape I have already isn't ideal, it hasn't made me want to completely change my existing garden (since space isn't an issue for me) and it has given me guidance and direction for the rest of my 3 acres, which previously I had been at a loss with. I know that makes those of you with small urban lots want to puke, but having too much space and too little guidance is a problem, too

Also, let's talk about this edible prairie garden... I don't know if I have the ideal locale for this, but it's interesting and I can think of a few spots in my yard where it would be worth a try (I live in Central MN... I need to change my profile to reflect that, but we're more forest than prairie here). Even if not it may be something my sister in Nebraska may be interested in. Where did you get info on what to plant, where did you get your plants/seeds, or any other tips on this topic?

I'm off to start my thread!
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Some of the edible prairie plants I'm trying to grow are from the list in this pdf "Renewing the Native Food Traditions of Bison Nation" you can find on this page: http://www.albc-usa.org/RAFT/resources.html

I'm still developing my collection of plants and seeds for this project.

Seed and plant sources:

http://www.prairiemoon.com/

http://seedsource.com/

http://www.nativeseeds.org/
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Made a new map showing the animal area and some lines for berms either in place or planned/under construction:



I need help designing my system so it works better.
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Here's the plan with more proposed features sketched in:



I wish I knew where to turn for help with improving my design and how to integrate the elements with each other and the water harvesting. I don't know how to get in touch with any permaculturists in my area, the nearest ones seem about 100 miles away. Also I don't have money to pay someone for a design.

L. Jones


Joined: Apr 29, 2012
Posts: 80
Location: NW Mass Zone 4 (5 for optomists)
How much of your other ~19 acres is above your 1-acre-ish homestead area? Given the availability of an excavator and application of a level, all that area should be working to help move water to where you need it, when you get it. I gather you've made a start on that, given the one picture of the rain basin that's not on this map. As for the parts below, just work to help them move water into the ground, as opposed to letting it run away. But given finite time, start with the projects that will (gently) bring surface water into the homestead area, and work further out until you hit the edges of the high-side, then work on the lower parts as you can.

Muddling towards a more permanent agriculture. Not after a guru or a religion, just a functional garden.
Devon Olsen


Joined: Nov 28, 2011
Posts: 1002
Location: SE Wyoming -zone 4
    
    6
well im sub'd cant wait to watch more of your project unfold


Current Cheyenne, WY project
"Do you Hugel?" T-shirts and other products
Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
The homestead is almost exactly in the middle of the property, with half above and half below. The homestead is slightly uphill from the major drainage of the two seasonal creeks, so serious flooding of the house itself is very unlikely. The lower garden (Prairie Garden and Asparagus Garden on the map) has been under about four inches of water in the past. During one flood event a wall of water came through between the house and the shop, knocking over fences and small trees. As we can only expect these kinds of events to get worse with global warming, we seriously need to address these water issues but have limited financial and physical resources. It's been easy to forget about the flooding during the drought, in which we had a couple years with no heavy rain, but the recent flood (minor) reminded me I need to get serious about it again.

Tyler Ludens
pollinator

Joined: Jun 25, 2010
Posts: 5326
Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
    
  20
Yard flooding:



I hope to improve this situation by putting a swale out in that field.

Lori Crouch


Joined: Sep 26, 2011
Posts: 104
Location: Amarillo, TX.
    
    1
We've been getting a ton of rain up here too the past few weeks. I thought on our tiny property that is usually devoid of water that swales would be ridiculous to add. However I am watching the flow of water from the house and cement walkways and devising some plans. I had already made some sunken garden beds around the front walkways to collect rain runoff and that is certainly helping quite a bit. I've only been here for two years and I've never seen this much rain.
 
 
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