i finished the first section of the hugelkultur bed that is to surround the greenhouse area, planted and mulched and all that so i took pics of everything, this is the section that i dug out by hand, i dug down about 2ft deep and rolled huge logs into the hole, getting progressively smaller as i got taller, after i finished i realised that sepp said pauls article contains too much wood and all that so hopefully it turns out ok, i also failed to put soil down AS i stacked the logs and instead stacked the logs and THEN buried them, but again well just have to see how it all turns out
the retaining wall of stacked stone is made with mud and stone, its only there to make sure there is enough room to walk between the bed and hte existing fence, as i didnt account for that much slump when i originally started
the right side that doesnt have the wall isnt as steep as i would have liked it because i tried to have the skidster operator steepen it up when he was here and he couldnt get the dirt to stay sttep enough, from here on out i will go behind the machine and shovel the bottom soil up to steepen the bed before plant and mulch, there is going to be a little shallow bridge going over the bed right after section 1, probalby about 3 feet high tops, not sure what ill build it out of just yet but i may just dig it out, line iwth stones and fill with wood chip mulch...
the one log i got for my 1 quart jar, innoculating and a close up of the placement, put a few "extra" plugs in the straw surrounding the log, and then sprayed the thing down a little bit afterwards, not much though
we just had a good rain that caused some serious flash flooding across the interstate on our way back from waterworld in denver the other day, ill post a couple pics of that, i think our soil has a slight penetration problem but its probably coupled with getting a BUNCH more rain than we normally get in one rain event, ill post up the number on the post with the pics
ok here is the log after it was all put into place and all that
and never mind on the numbers i couldnt find any, go figure the newspaper will put a bunch of socialist promoting bullshit plus a bunch of sad stories to increase depression risks but wont put a thing on how much rain we got...
anyway we had to drive all the way back from the next exit which was a good 12 miles or more north of htis pic but when we first passed the water was RAGING under our side of the interstate(at LEAST 13ft high) and flowing over the other side causing a back up of slow cars and a couple cars that got pushed off the road or at least hydroplaned off the road the other pic is off a railroad tie and some logs that got washed up on the road at some point, idk if those trees in the valley thing survived or got wiped out but man that was a lot of water, you could see the flood reach at least a mile and a half up the valley(or what i'd call a valley on the rolling hills that cover this area, no mountains or nothing) it was definately a LOT of rain, and htough i havent gotten the numbers yet i would say probably more than our annual average being that there were flash floods and power outages that caused traffic lights the quit and a few accidents here and there
ok im back from leavin town for 12 days and working a lot with mushroom stuff, not even done with one bag of Blue Oyster and havent yet started with the Shitake bags so later this week or sometime next week ill be updating with a pretty large update because of how much i will have done, also started digging a couple swales today so in another month or two i should have pretty much all of those done...
by saying not even done with one bag in the last post i meant i never fully tore apart one of the bags for colonizing others, instead i only used about half of it to colonize 10 bags
but here we go with more mushroom pics
1) the two Blue Oyster mushroom bags i came back to, my phone sucks but you could see the mycelium had completely colonized them without even opening them
2) and 3) the Blue Oyster bags opened before i left, just a few days after spawning them with grain
third pic: an unknown fungi that was growing in the corner of a dark basement bedroom, relatively new carpet, came up on a humid week from outside rain, until i can get it identified i am calling it Carpet Muncher Fungus cus thats what it was munchin on lol
here is some shitake pics, this stuff wasnt as pleasant to work with as the Blue Oyster thus far, kinda makes the medium mushy, smells funky imo(some love it i hear) not as aggressive either, other than that, its still pretty cool to be growing high dollar gourmet mushrooms all on my own:)
this pic is going to be one its own, as well as the next one -well... maybe- because they dont really go thegether with eachother and wont fit with others for one reason or another but this ones alone at least
i just took this because i thought it was cool how the myc grew on the plugs around where the wheat used to be
the remainder of pics that i took of the forming pins, my phone aint a good camera but these things look REALLY awesome up close and focused well imo
to add a little nutrition info:
According to R.H. Kurtzman, PhD., they are rich sources of high-quality proteins and amino acids, B vitamins, and pro-vitamin D (the vitamin a lot of people are missing these days, as indoor jobs means little sun exposture). Minerals such as iron and potassium are also present. And oyster mushrooms are high in chitin; he recommends them as a cleaner source for chitin than shellfish.
just pulled off a website, no guarentees that this is 100% accurate but im sure if i spent the time to double check all this would be true and id probably find a little more too
ok here are three pics of the last three days, each one from a different day, BIG difference every day, i dont think i could share the beauty of these things up close even if i had a high resolution camera, they are just amazing to watch grow:)
been a bit since last update so here is a couple more i will go out and take pics here in a minute and update on the hugelkultur bed and the logs currently being soaked for cold pastuerization as well as the already nocced up log and bins of straw
how do i embed pics so that i can post more in each post, make them bigger and better eye candy?
and can someone double check this plant for me, im pretty sure its purslane, am i right?
it tastes sweet and tangy at the same time though, grows on exposed soil, one on the hugelkultur bed next to the path over the bed and the other next to future site of keyhole bed that hasnt been finished yet...
here are the logs i have cut and soaking, there are approx 7 or 8 small 2"-3" diameter logs, being soaked for at least 30 hours to kill anything that may have already inhabited the logs as far as fungus goes
then the finished hugelkultur bed, first section anyway
and the plants on the first section of hugelkultur bed, the big ones are Rostov sunflowers
there are also bush beans
bindweed here and there
hopefully some wheat but grasses here and there
one or two curly dock plants near the bottom
a couple purple basil plants, small and young
a purslane plant
i also planted but havent yet seen or identified
and i think there may be a few other seeds i threw on there but cant remember what they are at the moment
here is the pic of the bulk mushroom outdoor grow i got going, hope it all works out but the log is blue oyster as well as the left bin and the right bin is shitake
more logs(the ones soaking) will soon be piled here as well to help mainatin humidity and temps and ensure a crop of some sort hopefully
i shouldve done this some time ago but forgot about it after noccing up the bins so the plugs will be WELL colonized by the time i plug up the logs...
Devon, Awesome thread and great work so far. How much land are you working with ?
You might see if you can find a copy of the books "Weeds of the West" or "Pests of the west" to help identify the local plants.
I usually post my pictures at a sight called "Photobucket" and then link to the photos. The pictures are stored in a file, in one place, and linked so they do not take up space here at Permies.
I would love to check out your farm sometime. I usually get through Cheyenne once a month as I travel from my place near Saratoga to Denver and back. I am not as far along as you are so you are an inspiration to me. I have been harvesting Alberta peaches this month and have a bunch of seeds, if you would like to try to grow some peaches I can drop some off .
I spent many years in Rock Springs before I discovered permiculture. Here are a couple of pictures, from the photobucket site, of the greenhouse I had.
^thanks for visiting the thread:)
i have a little less than 2 acres to work with and if you got some peaches i might have to say you're further along then i am lol
i have a lot of things going on but dont ever seem to get very much in the way of yield or harvests
all and all i would have to say that i am definitely making some progress, but i sure wish it were more apparent in the form of harvest-able food lol
definately feel free to swing by any time you come through, i will PM you a phone number and you can just give me a call a few days in advance so that i can try to clear my schedule for that day, im certainly interested in giving some peaches a try, so feel free to bring some of those along as well, if i have anything to trade at the time then i'm certainly willing to compensate for the gift in one form or another
i lived in green river for a few months last winter, worked at the mall in rock springs and ive gone to saratoga to visit the hotsprings, as well as spent a few days camping out in the surrounding mountains, nice area in my opinion:)
ive been thinking of potential drought resistant designs that can also hold large amounts of water during out of proportion storms and rain events and will create a comfortable microclimate near the house, hopefully keep the lawn green longer (client insists on having lawn, their choice) and include a diverse array of microclimates that create a very beautiful and resilient backyard - i just have it written down here, when i visualize it on a paper or white board, i will be sure to take a picture, just remind me to post pictures if i havent by january... ive fallen out of the habit of updating if you havent noticed... takes time and effort i dont always feel like sharing:p
so since ive sorta finished my minds picture for this place, i will write it down here where it can be shared and referred to later:)
On my small back acre i plan to have a large, deep swale along the top that is on contour and leads to a silt trap and a large, deep, drought resistant pond, then backfilling and filling a frog pond(ponds that are not full all the time and dry out in the dry season) or two along the bottom (only half-acre area to spread swale length on contour) before filling and emptying to a deeper frog/crawdad pond thats NOT sealed properly for better infiltration and backfilling into a smaller swale that is likely hand dug, and when that fills the overflow areas run in between a few hugelkulturs that have depressions betwen them to make more frog ponds and swale combos (very short, shallow systems to ensure a good catchment of water but not making travel impossible or more difficult than you would want, the spillways on each would alternate so that if it was flowing contiously for a day or two, it would meander through the walkway, slowing erosion and increase infiltration and moisture rentention/water quality all the way down the slope, these would overflow into another deep swale, POSSIBLY deeper than the other swale at the top of the hill, in this swale are 3-5 deep frog ponds that fill before the swale, then the swale spills into 5 or more spillways (to spread water out), some going on two sides of the heat trap, one going through a break in some more hugelkultur beds bordering the chicken paddocks), then downhill just a ways from the bottome end of the top bed in the break, a pond would also form for frogs, creating a weak tefa sorta thing with animals downhill and water reflecting light onto stones on the hugelbeds, before backfilling to hand dug swale, (with many depressions) that spills over the heavily textured chicken yard, collecting in many small frog ponds and 4 small ones such as the ones between the hugelkultur bed uphill that are at the base of the part of the hugelkultur that wraps around the bottom part of the chicken yard, and finally, where the land currently turns from convex to concave, before turning convex again towards the house 40 yds away, this one hopefully deepest of all, with instead of ponds at the bottom, a few islands here and there for heat/water loving plants, using rock mulch, likely dark rocks to absorb maximum heat, with surronding banks in a circle around the island and deep mulch circle, clean(not maintained, just "clean") sand piled high enough to make an effective light reflector for the heat/moisture loving plant(s) on the small island, this would create moist areas that can be used for maximum heat gain and retention for out of zone plants
all of the back yard flows into a nearby draw anyway (probably wrong terminology, during heavy rains it fills up and backfloods the plain, which two years later (and a drought year) stayed green a few weeks longer than everything else into the heat and is still a bit LESS brown than everything else in the area) this is currently fed from my back yard, culverts running half a mile or so up the road my direction, another mile long culvert on a steeper rise heading other way and part of a much larger hill/ridge that probably equals a 2 square mile catchment area at least.
--- In 2010 this area backflooded so much that with another inch or two of rain in the same event, it wouldve flooded our poorly placed home (purchased, not built or sited by us) it was flowing out full force through an opened "culvert pipe" that runs under the road to the neighbors across the streets "pasture" i presume (occasionally see a horse there), but though it stay green for quite a while, i suspect he loses a lot of topsoil in these events, we still almost got flooded out and i believe he closed it with a board at one point to avoid it destroying his property ---
to mitigate potential water that may flood the home, i plan to build a hugel/bed or berm along the edge of our property line near the house where the saddle sits, and dig down the area that runs to the culvert so that it backflows into my culvert during such large rain events, at the bottom of said culvert i would have deep pits that would serve as temporary frog ponds and help to filter out runoff/pollutants that come off the busy road nearby(county so no curbs) and planted with filtering plants and fungi that would help to clean that soil and moisture before it soaked into our land, then the plan to eventually convince the clients to take over the large area out front (currently used to park big vehicles and things for sale) and to loop around to park between trees - if this were clay soil it would create a huge compacted catchment area that would shed quite a lot of water towards the house) and plant a bamboo hedge at the ridge that is directly along the culvert, plant some plants that wont be used in a way that would involve eating toxins by some animal or person, such as non-edible decorative nursery plants for sell, right next to the road so customers dont have to go out back for everything, also possible loacation for not easily seen honor stand (only have so much land to produce for so many people, which can be found by word of mouth easily - also reduces conflict with dept. of making you criminal), then maybe after a LIGHTLY sloped (say one or two inch drop for the full width of it) driveway that customers can drive up in to acess the plants ( perhaps a spot for MAYBE a well built undergroundgreenhouse - i dont know if i like greenhouses enough to have it there) IF there is a small greenhouse there, then it acts as a catchment pond for some somewhat deep ponds that sit over and overflows through a few hugelkultur beds (both sets on both hills angled so as to move the water away from the house and to the draw while allowing it to soak in above said hydrophobic areas)
the back ridge and the front ridge, as well as POSSIBLE greenhouse and animal housing just off front and back ridges respectively, act as the highest catchment areas and both have swales or some other way of holding a large amount of water from running downhill, as the water fills this sponge it hits the next one, frog ponds mostly, deep enough to have little risk of filling and overflowing even during heavy rains, then hugelkultur beds, and a final deep swale and/or large berm/hugelbed that run excess water off site and into the nearby draw, as this draw fills it fill the culvert at the top of the front end of the property, this water soaks in good and moistens just beneath the greenhouse plants and around the SHCS (from central rocky mountain permaculture institute) and waters things inside the greenhouse deeply, being spongy, this reduces water needs in the greenhouse for a long period, particularly if the water has already ran through and soaked the site once and is filling back in from the draw, without any pumps or substantial rise in altitude ( because it only hits culvert upon back filling) the water flows from the bottom of the property and returns to the top to be soaked in again
Devon Olsen wrote:ive been thinking of potential drought resistant designs that can also hold large amounts of water during out of proportion storms and rain events and will create a comfortable microclimate near the house,
This interests me tremendously. I would love to see diagrams of your plan, because I have a little trouble making a clear mental picture of it from the description. I think I might be able to employ some of the ideas you mention, such as the deeper small ponds within swales (if I'm understanding correctly).
were you the one who just posted in another thread that you got 3 inches of rain in an hour or so and it wiped out your hand dug swales?
if so, you were who i originally started typing that up for - as a response - but i decided i might as well include that as part of my own thread so its easier for me to find so i moved it here instead:)
i will definately be putting this on paper at some point however because i have to get the homeowners involved and excited
Got another hugelkultur bed put in and used up all of the logs i had around, the bed is still open and will not be finished until i get the chance to get to it again so i will get a pic up at some point after i get back to town at the end of the month
also threw a couple Blue Oyster Cakes outside under some woodchips that were NOT sterilized, i dont personally think that will be a problem though, one is near an apple tree and some straw with shitake spawn in it (that im not so sure about however) and the the other was thrown under some logs in the still open hugelkultur bed with some woodchips, seems like a nice place for mushrooms if its not covered up beforehand...
so i have decided to catch up on all the pictures i have taken recently(ish) and neglected to post being that i am going to have access to a fairly quiet house and computer while i am watching my THANKFULLY quiet, and well behaved two year old cousin for a couple weeks:)
so to kick off some more pictures i am going to begin with a bunch of pictures of a mushroom that grew out of one of the largest cottonwood logs out back this summer, i took the pics over the period of growth (a couple weeks) and i also cut it up and took pics before tearing it apart and dispersing it around the garden as a sorta slow release fertilizer:)
you may also realize that i labeled them according to the order they were sent and downloaded and not the order they were taken or by date by any means, so it may appear a bit scattered
what is labeled as pics 1, 2 and 3 are described below:
1: Taken September 5th 2012, this is showing the gills of the mushroom begginning to become exposed
2: taken same day, youll also see a dumbo ear in there...
3: also taken same day this is just showing all of what had come out till that point
as before the one that are labeled such, not the order posted
4: taken sept 5th as well
5: taken september 13th, the mushroom was pretty much done maturing by this point so i picked the first one that had popped up - shows the bottom of the mushroom compared to my hand
6: taken sept 13th as well, shows where the mushroom attached to the log, rather brown and tough/leathery throughout the mushroom, but especially in the brown, interior section
same description system as previous couple of posts
BTW, i don't have any sort of ID on this mushroom, if anyone even has some idea as to what family to look in that would be greatly appreciated:)
7: this shows the insides of the mushroom split sideways from top to bottom, the older growth is tough and brown, the newer is slightly less tough and white, the exterior looks similar to a crisped marshmallow in that its white with raised golden brown bits here and there - i deleted the picture from my phone before i posted but i am fairly certain this is from sept 13th as well
8: a closer view of the side, you can see the grain of the mushroom here
9: a view of where the gills meet the "stem" i guess you would call it
here are three pictures of earthstar fungus i found in the yard this fall, they were in the field near where the woodchip pile is along where i have drove the truck when dropping off more organic matter through the year, i have also seen one down near the begginning of the walkways from the house/lawn so they either got some spores moved down there when moving around wood chips or the little ball got blown down there, but i think its more likely that spores simply grew there
these pics were all taken on September 12th of 2012
ok so i have successfully harvested one single Blue Oyster Mushroom this year, and here are some pictures of it growing while small and of me frying it and eating it
fruying and eating pics were taken some time in december, i would guess around the 18th if i had to, but i deleted these before posting as well
when i harvested it, i threw some butter on an electric grill and then put it on that and ran outside to grab a sprig of Dill, i split the dill into smaller pieces (i LOVE the smell of fresh dill btw) and threw it on with the mushroom