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Hugelkultur with eucalypts and conifers?

 
Leiari Locky
Posts: 2
Location: Gippsland, Victoria
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We moved into our new house in January and have been planning out new gardens and orchards - I've been looking into hugelkultur for some of the garden but all we have here is Eucalypts and conifers plus lots of grass.

I have a garden bed with 6 smallish eucalypts (4-6m tall, lots of branches, pruned annually to 3m for a few years) and a couple of dozen conifers (Cupressocyparis leylandii, 2-4m high) down the driveway. They're all coming out in the next couple of weeks, is it worth trying a hugelkultur bed with these trees and grass+lillypilly prunings or should I just keep them for poles and firewood?

So far we've pulled out 5 conifers and have dumped the pieces in a big open compost bin - I was prepared to let it sit for a year or so to break down, but most of the big branches (on these and the ones still in the ground) are no more than thumb thick. The main stems I put aside to use later. I was thinking the conifers would be good for blueberries and similar if I did a hugelbed. We have a small shredder, so I can shred the lighter pieces.

Most of what I'm planting is fruit trees - apricots and plums, with berries between and passionfruit on the fence.

Any suggestions?
 
Lisa Albrecht
Posts: 5
Location: Midwest
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Gosh! I was going to post the same question! My county here is widening the road and I suddenly have lots of pine logs to make hugelkulturs out of. I am wondering if the pine would be too acid to use for the hugelkultur? I have a bunch of blueberries coming from Fedco, so I am going to plant them in the pine hugelkulturs. However I have so much pine that I couldn't possibly use it all for hugelkulturs. Does anyone have any suggestions what else I could do with them? HELP!!!
 
Andrew Bartelt
Posts: 20
Location: Central Wisconsin
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Lisa,
New here so sorry if this is too late and you found uses for pine. From podcasts and articles it appears that pine is fine in hugul, it just breaks down faster then hardwoods. As far as too much for it, 6-7 foot high beds are suggested by the big boys, but they have the big toys to move it. I hope you can use this knowledge, looked you because you are local to me.
 
Tyrr Vangeel
Posts: 39
Location: Mol, Belgium
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chicken dog forest garden
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the big boys, you might name sepp holzer as one off them.
In one of his books (sepp holzer's Permaculture), he suggests using pine as it is the cheapest to get for him and is not that good firewood.
Just don't shred it because then it will accidify your soil. If you use entire stems, that should be fine.

I have not experimented with it myself yet, but the book is very clear about it so I suppose it to be okay.
I hope to get my garden shet in somewhere in the next weeks and then I can start with my own garden. I'll be usnig hugelkultur keyhole garden in zone 1, maybe high enough so the space in between can be a zone 2. But that's off topic :p
 
Olivier Asselin
Posts: 62
Location: Ariege, France
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So I presume fir trees would also work? I was about to recommend my brother to chop up his Christmas tree and hold on to it as he plans to build raised beds in his small urban yard next spring.
 
Andrew Bartelt
Posts: 20
Location: Central Wisconsin
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Sure, just plan for more settling if branches are "bushy". If he can, tell him to grab what he can from street if his city does road side tree pickup. Best recycling is reuse and composting.
 
Elliot Everett
Posts: 29
Location: Coastal Uruguay. Wet winters, hot and dry summers. 1000 mm annual rain.
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I have had very good initial results with eucalyptus. I used smaller branches and leaf waste to make my first test hugel. Even though there is partial shade, things are growing very well: comfrey, jerusalem artichokes, sweet potato, potato and mint.

Pics:

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I agree. Here's the link: http://stoves2.com
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