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swale - hugelculture -

 
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books chicken cooking
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Not sure where to put this question, so I am putting it in hugelculture!  I am looking at catching water from monsoon type storms.

I am in high desert with seasonal monsoon type rains in July/Aug/Sep with not much rain March - June.  When we do get rain it comes fast and furious and often in the form of hail (yes even in july and aug)

I am making some swale and bump / hugelculture mixups in my yard.  Basically digging a trench on a contour line, piling wood on the downslope line of the trench, putting most of the dug out dirt on the bump/hugel mound , filling the trench up with wood and other stuff then covering with some of the dirt taken out and covering the stuff in the trench to plant into as well as planting onto the bump/hugel mound.  so two hugel mounds next to each other one on existing surface and one upslope dug below exiting surface.

What I am trying to accomplish:
keeping water from running off sloping yard in monsoon season
keeping water from taking dirt with it
improving soil condition
making more planting areas

I am planning on making these about a foot high at the start, since that is about how much wood I have to start with.

Has anyone done anything similiar to this before?    I am thinking of filling the trench with chicken coop cleanouts on top of the wood and below the dirt- will this be too hot?  I also have various wool stuff I have been saving but didnt want to throw out - moth eaten wool rug, wool socks that are no longer patchable, etc I'd like to put this into the trench as well - thoughts about this?

Sandy


 
pollinator
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Location: North Carolina zone 7
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I think it’s a very innovated approach to hugelcultures. One aspect of these mounds is protecting crops from too much water. The first year I had one was a very wet one. Everything in my regular beds died while the hugel beds flourished. I see no problem with chicken coop clean out going on the bottom. Buy the time the roots it it there shouldn’t be any problems with it being hot. Given the small size you described I’m not sure i would put it too thick though. I’m not sure about the wool but cutting them into strips would be helpful I believe. If you don’t mind keep me updated on your progress.
 
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Location: Currently staying with a friend near the four corners, usa
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foraging woodworking greening the desert
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Hey there, any progress with this?  I'd love to see some pictures/hear some updates.  How deep are your trenches and how much space between wood and planting inside the trench?  What will you plant on your mound to hold the soil? Best, Z
 
S Smithsson
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Covid, transition to work at home, dogs, coyote fence, garden fence.. all have contributed to no progress on the hugel / swale.  Also we hit tuff about 4-6 inches down.... so it will not be much of a swale! and the dogs have torn apart the two layers of logs/dirt/small sticks that we DID have laid down.

We are planning on getting back to it soon, since it is almost Monsoon season. I'll post some pics when we get there.

Sandy
 
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