Author Topic: My temperate suburban forest garden  (Read 8526 times)

Offline Moonvalleyprepper

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My temperate suburban forest garden
« on: June 11, 2014, 10:07:56 AM »
Hi all!

I was going to take pictures and write a bunch of words, but that's a lot of work. So I made a video tour instead.

All questions and comments welcome

Enjoy!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QbH6wwHxJLQ

Offline Tacoma Sentinel

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2014, 10:42:01 AM »
Great job!  I would love to see future updates as the system matures. In Zone 6, how long did it take to get fruit off the Flying Dragon? And, any disease issues tractoring rabbits that way. I would love to do a rabbit tractor like your, but a local large scale rabbit producer got me all paranoid about disease - he said meat rabbits should never touch the ground.

Thanks again, great job.

Offline Ms. Albatross

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2014, 11:08:47 AM »
Hi all!

I was going to take pictures and write a bunch of words, but that's a lot of work. So I made a video tour instead.

All questions and comments welcome

Enjoy!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QbH6wwHxJLQ

Enjoyed the video.  Thanks for sharing!



IMO just being able to be in on the ground floor of PermaEthos is worth the price, the PDC is just icing on the cake. I am also finishing up my app to be a wwopf there this summer. I think being there while taking the course would be pretty wild.

Did you end up deciding to wwopf?  If so, when are you going?

Offline Moonvalleyprepper

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2014, 11:40:19 AM »
Great job!  I would love to see future updates as the system matures.

Thank you! I plan on documenting the whole yard, it just wasn't where I wanted to show it off yet, not too many folks get excited about ditches and swales with no plants.  ;)

In Zone 6, how long did it take to get fruit off the Flying Dragon?

No idea, they were planted this spring so I'm guessing it will be a few years. The longest any of those trees have been in the ground is 1 year. I wasn't planning on getting any fruit from them for at least a few years, I am pretty surprised to see that a couple of apples and a pear are setting fruit.

Any disease issues tractoring rabbits that way?

Not recently. Last year I built those tractors and used them all over the yard. Wherever a swale, garden or path was going I used the rabbits to denude the ground first. They went into the tractors in early summer and stayed until the fall. Everything went great, no escapes or losses. A couple of does gave birth in them and raised the kits without issues. Then in the fall we got a wet snap with cold nights and one of my does mysteriously gave up the ghost, four days later one of my bucks (my favorite rabbit at the time) died also. At that point I put them back in their wire cages for the winter.

Thinking about this over the winter I came up with a theory on what happened. Both rabbits were in different tractors on different parts of the property. Both tractors were running North / South. In both cases the rabbit that died was in the far Northern end. I think being on the Northern end they didn't get enough light and warmth and got damp fur during the wet snap. Damp fur led to fly strike, I found a couple of tiny maggots in one of their arm pits. So yes I have had issues, but I think with proper selection, genetically, and management practices it can be done successfully. Needless to say the two that died won't be passing on their genes in my herd, and hopefully through selection I can guide them to be more resilient on pasture.

Offline Moonvalleyprepper

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2014, 11:46:27 AM »
Did you end up deciding to wwopf?  If so, when are you going?

Yup, I talked to Josiah last week and will be heading down soon. I'm still waiting on word from my side job, they just had 3 people quit in the last 2 weeks so I might have to train a couple of people before I head out. The plan is to be down there this month though.

Offline Ms. Albatross

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2014, 07:44:32 PM »

Did you end up deciding to wwopf?  If so, when are you going?

Yup, I talked to Josiah last week and will be heading down soon. I'm still waiting on word from my side job, they just had 3 people quit in the last 2 weeks so I might have to train a couple of people before I head out. The plan is to be down there this month though.

Looking forward to seeing you in the videos! 

I'm ready for my closeup Mr. DeMille. 8)

Offline jamendjr

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #6 on: July 04, 2014, 07:52:19 AM »
That looks great. I listened to your interview with Jack, great stuff!

Whats your ratio of support trees to "production" trees in there?

Offline ResidentCelt

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #7 on: October 22, 2014, 09:49:59 AM »
Looks good! Definitely gives me some ideas for my similarly-sized yard. What do you do about the paths? It looks like it's just packed dirt. Does it get muddy?

Offline FreedomFarmTV

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #8 on: October 22, 2014, 02:10:09 PM »
Great job. loved it

Offline Moonvalleyprepper

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2014, 09:12:24 AM »
I'm back!

I had a self imposed computer ban for the summer / fall but now that's it's cold as crap out I don't feel bad about doing some forum posting.

Looking forward to seeing you in the videos! 

I'm ready for my closeup Mr. DeMille. 8)

So PermaEthos was a lot of fun, got to meet a bunch of awesome people, play with a mini excavator, chase pigs and cows, help install a baffle  pipe on the top damn, dig swales and make some terraces.

I'm in this video a few times,I'm the guy using the chainsaw mill about 40 sec in, but I think my fly fishing rod got more air time ;) I showed the kid in the video how to use it, and he was pretty darn good at it by the end of the weekend.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAQKPxnOeHc

All in all it was a great experience, it really opened my eyes to how challenging of a site that is and what amazing potential it has.

That looks great. I listened to your interview with Jack, great stuff!

Whats your ratio of support trees to "production" trees in there?

So right now there are no tree support species in the ground. I have a couple in my design, but they didn't make it in this year so probably next year. The major supporting elements is a clover ground cover, and a crap ton of comfrey. I'm very lucky in that I have awesome soil already, and my house backs up to a large hill, one of the highest points in SE MI. So aside from my already pretty good top soil, I have most of the top soil that was on that hill at some point. Not bragging, but when I dug my swales I was 2.5' down and still in dark black soil. The soils isn't perfect, it's very compacted, acid and needs life, but it's already good enough to support my productive plants.

Also, with how tightly I placed the trees I am not really looking for a lot of Nitrogen fixing elements (N+). Nitrogen supports vegetative growth and in my instance will just lead to more pruning. Most of my supporting elements will be focused on P, K, Mineral accumulation, pollinators, decompactors and biomass to feed the soil. If I was installing this in an area with less favorable soils, or wanted full size trees quickly I would have overstacked the area with a ton of black locust or other N+ trees that work in the area.

Looks good! Definitely gives me some ideas for my similarly-sized yard. What do you do about the paths? It looks like it's just packed dirt. Does it get muddy?

Thanks! Right now that paths are mostly just dirt, I had clover seeded but the dogs loving running around and chasing each other through the swales and paths so some areas are pretty torn up. The bottoms of the swales get a little muddy after a rain, but the paths stay pretty solid. They are pitched to drain any water to the swale below. Eventually, the plan is either to fill in the paths and swales with wood chips or use a gravel base. If I go the wood chip route I will also inoculate all of the paths and swales with edible mushrooms, with the swales causing them to flush due to rain events. The other option I am thinking of is to lay down weed fabric, then gravel. With either option I am going to put in a small block wall on the edges in between the paths and the garden beds. I priced both options out and they are both out of my range right now, so I'll figure that one out eventually.

Great job. loved it

Thank you!

Now that the leaves are dropping it might be a good time to do an update video, It's a lot easier to see the earth works and overall shape right now. Feel free to post anymore questions or comments :)

Offline jamendjr

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2014, 02:11:37 PM »
Interesting, sounds like you have a solid plan. Looking forward to the update video!

Offline Moonvalleyprepper

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2015, 09:06:09 AM »
Video update

Fun with time lapse, 2 years in 2 minutes.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iSKfQQZmGuk

I've still got the camera up and running, just put in another 20 trees this spring with more on the way.  ;D

Offline jamendjr

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2015, 09:10:25 AM »
Awesome idea using the trail camera. I did however play the music of my choice in the background while watching!

Offline Moonvalleyprepper

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2015, 09:16:14 AM »
Awww no Yankety sax?

I'm not sure why, but every time I see a time lapse I want it playing the the background.  ;)

It's a Primos DPS camera ~$50 on amazon. The software is crap and it's not high def, but I figured crappy video is better then no video.

Offline jamendjr

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2015, 09:18:50 AM »
Nope, Ben Folds was rocking Annie Waits while I watched that one.

I am so doing this, I wish I had done it when prepping my annual beds this year. I may make a new bed just to try it out. We have a trail cam to watch the suburban deer, fox, etc. The kids like it.

Glad to see you are continuing with the updates.

Offline Moonvalleyprepper

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #15 on: May 14, 2015, 09:25:29 AM »
Putting in some double dug vegetable beds, built to the specs of Curtis Stone. 30" wide and about 23' long. I plan on having 9 total. Enjoy!

https://youtu.be/b3U6ynCqoWk


Offline jamendjr

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Re: My temperate suburban forest garden
« Reply #16 on: May 14, 2015, 12:47:14 PM »
Double digging can be a beast. I have also seen it interpreted it in multiple ways. Did you double dig a la John Jeavons/Ecology In Action?

http://www.misterhendrix.com/biointensivegardening/

Good work!

Seven more to go...