Marjie Paton

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since Mar 03, 2014
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Recent posts by Marjie Paton

Hi Dale: Sorry ~ I did not respond sooner! I will need to take a picture of my back yard! Huge wood mess right now! Soooooooooooooooooooooooo much work to do inside and outside of my home in California! Needing 20 strong men to help me!!! Wish you were closer!! lol You have been very awesome!! Hoping to visit my Canadian Relatives in October! Will be visiting a friend in B.C. before going to a Wedding in Sask. I would be spending a couple days with her ~ She would be interested in your Hugelkultur Magic too! Another Nature Lover! Really do appreciate you so very much! And your sense of humor as well. Loving your kindness sooooooooooo much!! Hope we keep contact! Get a Facebook page!! lol Mug
6 years ago
Hi Anne: Dale is the expert and he is soooooooooooooooooooo very attentive and kind to be concerned with us ... new to this type of gardening! I am fascinated ... completely fascinated and looking forward to good results! I love the Tacoma / Seattle Area! I was born in Tacoma in 1947 and was raised in the rural area of Clover Creek. I miss the forests in Washington! I have lots of family in that area! We just had a family reunion and hoping to plan more for this summer!

If you do facebook ... send me a friend's request to Marjie Paton .... We can keep tabs on our Hugelkultur Gardens and how they grow! Take care! Mug
6 years ago
Dale: Again ~ Thank you for your help! I will tell my daughter to add some clay! Not sure what type of soils they have in Texas. Simi is ALL CLAY! lol I will keep you posted on my California Hugelkultur Gardens!! I might be keeping the Tall Perch for the Birds!! lol You are soooooooooooooooooooo kind!
6 years ago
Hi Dale: Thank you soooooooooooooooo very much for your concern! We were not given any advice what so ever! We used the drainage rocks simply from my experience with like potted plants! Silly reason and should have wrote to you sooner! lol The sacks just said drainage rocks ~ a little larger than gravel ~ We used about 5 sacks ~ might have been 3 or 4 inches deep. We put a 4 inch layer of compost before the logs were added. No fabric cloth .... Thank goodness! The rocks were somewhat different sizes. Sooooo I am sure some of the compost sifted down in between the rocks. Hopefully that would help the wicking process.

I will have to ask my new Texas, Friend, Bernie about the ground water ~ not sure how far under they lie! We could dig down under the blocks and use a hoe to pull out some of those rocks ... Would need to wait until I return ... I am that hard headed to try and resolve the rock issue! Arlington, TX does get quite a lot of rain fall. I will ask Bernie for a figure.

You are sooooooooooooooo sweet to be concerned! Would love to see your property some time in the future! We will be having a wedding in Pierceland, Sask in October ~ I hope that I will be able to attend ~ an excuse to see my family again! These family members are very awesome!! Great Canadians!!

Are you on Facebook? You most likely do not have time for facebooking!! I am Marjie Paton on Facebook lol Take care and sweet dreams!! Mug
6 years ago
Hi Dale: Thank you again for answering my questions. I am looking forward to getting started! My back yard is a mess at this point! Waiting for my Tree Trimmer to return to cut up some of the logs and contain the brush. Sad to hear the the Alder Stump would not make a good human perch! lol Just might need to save it for the birds!!

Do you think the drainage rock in my daughter's garden will effect her results when she plants in the Spring? Will the rocks stay there forever creating a barrier between the soils and the logs? Do they break down over time?

I really do appreciate the time that you have given to me to answer my many questions!! I will attempt to attach a few pictures of my daughter's garden in Texas. They are still getting snow and freezing temperatures. Spring should be soon! I bought her a 6' X 6' green house ~ frame and vinyl tent style that needs to be set up. This should help her get her seedlings started. Have you seen the Non-GMO seeds from: www.mypatriotsupply.com They are called Survival Seed Vault. I bought her enough to last her life time for only $40.00.

Our mother's both had 10 children! It must be those cold snowy nights in Canada! lol

Take care and sweet dreams! Mug
6 years ago
Hi Dale: Thank you again for answering my questions. I am looking forward to getting started! My back yard is a mess at this point! Waiting for my Tree Trimmer to return to cut up some of the logs and contain the brush. Sad to hear the the Alder Stump would not make a good human perch! lol Just might need to save it for the birds!!

Do you think the drainage rock in my daughter's garden will effect her results when she plants in the Spring? Will the rocks stay there forever creating a barrier between the soils and the logs? Do they break down over time?

I really do appreciate the time that you have given to me to answer my many questions!! I will attempt to attach a few pictures of my daughter's garden in Texas. They are still getting snow and freezing temperatures. Spring should be soon! I bought her a 6' X 6' green house ~ frame and vinyl tent style that needs to be set up. This should help her get her seedlings started. Have you seen the Non-GMO seeds from: www.mypatriotsupply.com They are called Survival Seed Vault. I bought her enough to last her life time for only $40.00.

Our mother's both had 10 children! It must be those cold snowy nights in Canada! lol

Take care and sweet dreams! Mug
6 years ago
Hi Dale: Thank you sooooooooooooo very much for your information! Very happy that Alder is a good wood and that this wood can be used green. Since mine was cut in Early Spring, I could experience some growth, which will soon die out. Please tell me about the Chinese Elm wood? I have a massive Chinese Elm in both my front yard and my back yard. I had the Elm in front trimmed last year. As I said before, I have limbs from that cutting and will use these at the bottom. Curious ~ Are the Alder and the Elm good for fire wood? I do have a fire place and that would be good to know! Soooooooooooo back to my original question ... Is the Chinese Elm a good wood for the Hugelkultur Garden? What about Walnut or Eucalyptus logs? Are they good woods for these gardens?

Since California is a very dry climate ... I will attempt to dig down for at least 2 feet. My back yard would not accommodate big machinery .... Will need to use my own muscle!! Is my idea about using wood pallets around my block retaining wall, at least the back wall, for some vertical beds a good plan? There was at one time a 2 1/2 foot slope under the back retaining wall. My father and I hauled tons of rock from the Canyons in CA and we fashioned a rock (using cement) retaining wall of about 2 feet height to hold the soils for planting. I could attempt to dig out the soils and fill with the Chinese Elm logs and then the wood pallets would be filled with the Alder.

I will have to rethink using more cinder blocks after hearing your advice! I love ROCKS! I have some banana trees that I had gotten about 3 months ago. I was told to keep them in water until March and then plant them. I am hoping they have not died out! I was thinking to make them their own planter containers. I could dig down in my yard ... perhaps 3 feet ... Fill with last years Chinese Elm ... Then the Alder ... Shore up the sides with wood pallets or rocks ... Reverse some sod ~ Compost ~ Soils. In Simi Valley ~ We have only CLAY SOILS!! I plan on having Composting Worm Beds as well.

I should have gotten advice from your forum before jumping in to build the Hugelkultur Garden for my daughter. She wanted a waist high garden .... And the Cinder Blocks were handy for that. The blocks were reinforce with re-bar for strength. I am hoping that the blocks do not leach out chemicals into the soils of the garden? Sooooooooooooooooooooooo When I go back to Texas ... Do I need to take apart that garden to dig out the drainage rocks that we mistakenly used? Might be a good idea to do that! They do get quite a lot of rain around Dallas ~ She lives in Arlington. I do want her to have successes with growing her organic veggies! Working on her to become a Raw Vegan! lol At least getting more healthy foods instead of fast food into their young lives!! I found Composting Worms and the man was so great to build us a worm bed for them. My daughter is already using the soils that they are creating. I would imagine that adding the worms directly into the Hugelkultur Beds would be good? We also installed a Roof Rain Water Collection System with two barrels, which fill after a 30 minute rain. She is using these waters for her gardening. She gets the rain! Ours in CA is much more infrequent! lol I will try posting some pictures!

YOU LIVE in a paradise!! I grew up in the rural area near Tacoma, Washington! I grew up barefoot in the mossy covered rain forest of the Great Northwest! I love the flora in the coastal areas of Oregon, Washington and British Columbia! My fondest memories are foraging and exploring the depths of the forests ~ we followed the creeks way back into the woods ~ so we never got lost ~ we would find our way home for dinner time! lol I have created Washington in my back yard in California! Tons of Ferns, Blackberry Bushes, Hugh Varieties of Clematis, Honeysuckle, Tons of Vines! .... No Dogwood Trees though! I am missing the Dogwood Trees so much!! Happy to meet you in this forum! I have many relatives in British Columbia, Alberta and Sask! My mother gave birth to nine children in Canada before returning to her native country and meeting my father ... I was her tenth and last child!! We returned to Canada every year to keep the family together!! Lots of memories!! Lots of reunions!! Thank you again for your help!! Marjie alias Mug!
6 years ago
Hello: I am new to the Hugelkultur Gardening! I was recently in Texas and built a Hugelkultur Garden for my daughter before leaving for home. We used cinder blocks about 80 to build a rectangular waist height perimeter for the Hugelkultur Garden. We layered gravel for the foundation and used iron rods to give some strength to the walls. We layered drainage rocks, a layer of compost, aged oak fire wood to fill the garden except for the last 12 or 18 inches. We dumped in one year old composted X-mas Trees from the land fill site and then composted soils from the same site. My daughter then used a mixture of organic soil, vermiculite and peat moss for the next 8 or 10 inches. This was our first attempt ... Do you have any pointers? Did we make any mistakes along the way?

I am now wanting to build several Hugelkultur Gardens in Simi Valley, CA. I just cut down a huge Alder Tree in my back yard. From what I have been reading in these posts. Alder is a good wood ~ however ~ would I need to wait for one year or two years to pass by before using this wood in my Gardens? I have other cut up logs from last year when we trimmed a very large Chinese Elm in the front yard. This wood has aged about one year .. Would this be a good wood to use in my gardens. I am anxious to get started and I do not want to wait!! I could try trading my Alder Wood for Wood that has been aged for two years.

What types of wood are best? Oak? Not sure whether we have Cottonwood in CA. Sounds like Pepper Trees, Eucalyptus Trees and Cedar Trees are not the most suitable for this project. Is there away that I could use the Alder since I have sooooooooooo much of it in my back yard!!! Would it be detrimental to use this green wood? I was planning to use branches and small kindling to fill in between the logs. I might find some chipped wood somewhere. I will try to get some organic soils to bring home. I might try to pound some iron rods into the ground against my block walls. Tether wood pallets to these rods to keep the weight off of my old and weak block walls. I would place the logs piled up high and then slant another wood pallet in front of these logs ... tethering it to the rear pallet for strength. Padding with reversed sod, compost and soils. Giving me vertical gardens all along my block walls in my back yard.

Does this sound like it would work? I am simply a small little baby boomer with big plans and a huge imagination!! I left a 20 foot stump from the Alder Tree ~ I am planing to have a perch (sunbathing deck with a banister for safety) built on top of the stump ~ left 3 limbs for extra support for the wood deck. Add a rope ladder and a very young flexible senior (Raw Vegan) to climb up! Looking forward to all of my projects and simply looking for some advice!! I have another huge Chinese Elm in the back yard, which is going to be taken almost out! Leaving a strong support for my new Yoga Swing. I am tired of the worry these huge trees will fall on my home! Plus I need more sun in my back yard to grow more veggies and fruits! Raw Vegans are always HUNGRY!

Hope to hear from someone soon! Our rain storm passed by and we should be getting some sunny days to start my projects!! Whoo Who! Marjie Alias Mug! Sweet Dreams!!
6 years ago