Bryant RedHawk

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since May 15, 2014
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Part Nakota, part Irish. The Nakota took over long ago but still lives in two worlds, the European world and the first people's world. He lives on a small (15 + acres) piece of mother earth deep in the woods. Was trained in the cooper's arts as a child, since the family owned a cooperage. He has been a carpenter, and timber wright but love all aspects of farming.He holds a BS in Chemistry and Biology and a MS in Horticulture. Worked for the USDA for 16 years. Then PHD in Microbiology defended. Redhawk and his wife Wolf are setting up to be fully self sustaining, growing all their own foods and collecting rain water. "Soon we will be self sustaining and closer to being off the grid" he said when asked about future plans. They continue their own research both in Agriculture and soils with the hope to make the world more like it used to be, before mankind began screwing up the Earth Mother. This is the only way humankind will survive, we must fix what we have broken.
Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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Recent posts by Bryant RedHawk

Elaine Jett wrote:Hi, I'm about to try lowering the pH for my avocado plant and was wondering if it worked for you? Thanks

I will presume that you know the soil pH already and tbat it is at 7.0 or higher since you did not state the pH. Your tree is going to respond to small reductions better than a large drop all at once (which could kill the tree). If there aren't obvious yellow or crispy leaves pick a non primary mineral (no p, k,  ca) sulfate for adjusting pH, I like MgSO4 for reducing pH, use around 1/4 cup for trunks under 4" diameter. Spring and fall are the best times of year. Yes this works, but make additions no more than every two months so you don't shock the roots too much.

1 week ago
hau Violet, wonderful information on dirtless soil. This is just like the first horizon, all organic material, the minerals lie in the second horizon we term top soil, the two layers work together and there are many organisms as their foods are present and available. Kudos for sharing this great recipe for potting soil.

1 week ago

Eric Hanson wrote:Redhawk, everyone,

So would I be correct to assume that with a little "conditioning"--that is drying out time--even pine trees and chips from pine trees would be good for my Wine Caps?  I am asking this mostly out of curiosity, not because I have great plans to use pines or even a good source of pines.  

Just curious,


hau kola Eric, conifers are,(according to paul stamets), not proper in nutrients for many of our favorite fungi. I have chicken of the woods growing on some conifer wood but none of my oyster strains did anything. This is probably a prime function of the resins, I am doing some investigation on why my favorite to eat fungi do not seem to even get a start.

1 week ago

Eric Hanson wrote:Out of curiosity, what does the drying off do that is so beneficial?


Drying conifer chips reduces the viability of the alopathic compounds (each family has different types, some more potent than others). By reducing these the compound(s) are less likely to cause unwanted effects. The resins tend to inhibit both fungal and bacterial activity.

1 week ago
Correct Dennis, conifer chips need a drying period before use as mulch, especially in veg plots.

1 week ago

Kyle Anders wrote:Is a field covered in wood chips compatible with growing a hay crop like a mix of clover and some other perennial grass? Is there a way to broadcast seed through the wood chips, or should the hay be growing already? Or should i wait for the wood chips to break down on the surface and then plant a grass crop like normal?


If you use a seed drill planting through chips works pretty well. WC are mulch when on the soil surface the interface area retains moisture making that area more friable as well as more fungal/bacterial.
2 weeks ago

Angelika Maier wrote:We are buying a garden in a coastal subtropical climate. It is sloping a bit. The median rain is 1072.2 mm per year. The soil is compacted clay. It is half an acre (2000m2)
What we want is two swales and deep ripping of the soil.
first I want to know whom to ask and what to look for? If I ask an excavator they have probably no clue. I don't want a huge machine either which would compact the soil even more.
What should be avoided when doing that work? What can go wrong?
On the photo: the land goes to the red car which is on the road$.

First you need to set those swale lines, which need to be no more than 1 degree fall end to end, this is actually easy tk do with a watef level. The ripping is large tractor work it takes 45 hp to rip down 18" in a single pass, deeper equals more hp in the tractor. By hand would mean people with picks ( many people). The rip line needs to be  at the upper line of the swale, the swale is more like a slight depression than a ditch it should be wider than depth, and follow that 1 degree fall line the removed soil is what makes the berm below tbe swale.

4 weeks ago
Metal hoops are steel or stainless steel, the rivets are same metal as the band and they are hot riveted.
1 month ago

Leah Holder wrote:A friend recently sent me a Bokashi kit and quite frankly I’m a little skeptical.  How can promoting anaerobic organisms help the overall well-being of my plants? Won’t that just stifle the growth of the good stuff? I know you explained a bit Dr. R, but I could use a little more if someone doesn’t mind.
    My original question is actually about pigeon manure. Can using Bokashi kill pathogens in my pigeon manure, making it safe enough to add to my working compost, incase I don’t make temperature? Will the flush of anaerobic EM counteract the aerobic progress of my pile? And lastly, would a bucket of Bokashi be beneficial dumped into the center of my hugelkultur mound? Thanks in advance, I’m loving it here.❤️

All bird droppings contain high N and are fairly acidic from being a mix of urine and fecal matter. Bokashi method makes use of the anaerobic microbes for rapid breakdown of plant matter, that makes it great for small space composting.

The dual nature of the bokasi method means we can use all of the bacteria present, each working their part at the right time. To get the best use of tbe finished product we need to reduce the predators that grow during the process, cilliates are our prime concern, most of the bad guys can not live in an oxygen enviroment so when we add O2 to the finished product we remove most or all of the critters we don't want. EM are in the air as well as in the soil, they also live in the gut there is no need to purchase them except for speeding up the fermentation process.
Bokashi can help anywhere you place it in your gardens.

1 month ago