I've been a lurker for the past couple of months, decided to join up today
I recently did a PDC which opened up a Pandora's Box of ideas! While listening to a Permaculture Voicespodcast while driving, it automatically played the next episode which happened to be Paul Wheaton's '72 Bricks to Build a Better World'. From then on I was hooked!
At the moment I'm very interested in learning how to grow food in a dry climate. Even though I live in a 'subtropical' zone, we've been going through some really bad drought and I'd like to be more prepared for it next year. I thought I was starting to get pretty good at gardening until the drought hit. Many lessons were learned.
Yesterday I made ollas (the glue is still setting) and today I am building a herb spiral! I'd like to get my pollinator garden happy before I move on to repairing my vegetable gardens.
Some more projects/ideas on the backburner are:
- finishing my drip irrigation
- wicking beds
- hugulkultur (not sure how well it will do in my climate, but I'm thinking of doing some experiments)
- keyline or swales
- air wells - zai holes
Thanks for having me guys, looking forward to being an active member in this community
Dealing with droughts is a concern for so many (usually they are followed by a round flood, which only makes it even more challenging).
I think you have alot of the knowledge already to grow in a dry climate and we look forward to your process and pictures.
So my take on growing in dry climate is earthworks/spacing/catchment area. If a plant normally need 20ft in wet climates give it 40ft if you get, say, half the rainfall. Give the water time to soak in vs sheet off (flatland) or runoff making gullies (steepland).
Drip irrigation is your friend, at least to get the system started. You can also use your greywater too. Mulchhay they are cheap $5/bale or woodchip, it might be free too. Mulching also cuts down on evaporation. Add carbon any how you can compost/chop and drop/biochar/etc.
Tree root take alot of water to get minerals into the tree, so have the tree trade with fungi-roots to get more mineral for less water overall, the trees will lose out on a but of sugar/stores sunlight but we already have an 'excess' of that.
Ground cover to slowly but surely build soil fertility, soil life, carbon in the soil, etc.