• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Anne Miller
  • Pearl Sutton
  • r ranson
  • Nicole Alderman
stewards:
  • Joseph Lofthouse
  • paul wheaton
  • Mike Haasl
master gardeners:
  • jordan barton
  • John F Dean
  • Carla Burke
  • Greg Martin
gardeners:
  • Jay Angler
  • Leigh Tate
  • thomas rubino

Brainstorming help, please

 
pollinator
Posts: 463
Location: Utah
127
cat forest garden fungi foraging food preservation bee medical herbs writing greening the desert
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Last fall I realized that nearly all the water that runs off the stairs or the driveway dives headfirst into one corner of the parkstrip.



Problem solved (maybe). If there's just water from the driveway it should fill up and soak in. If the water from the street gets high enough, it should fill up and soak in. We'll see how it works when we get the first spring storm.

I have another nearly complete in another area (where the streets come together, you can't see it in the video) and two more planned.

The whole parkstrip right now is deep mulch, and last year I didn't water after I checked the sprinklers in the spring, so maybe four months without significant water. We had watermelon, pumpkins, and sunchokes in there, along with a single tomato I put in as a test to see if it would survive. It did. This year I'll be doing watermelons, pumpkins and tomatoes again (plus one summer squash as a test), but in these deep areas where more water will be caught I want to put something else--some kind of tree or perennial. I'm just not sure what.

We generally get two or three major storms, usually at least one in the spring and one in the fall. So this area should get double the water. It won't all be "caught," though, because the soil underneath the mulch is primarily sand. So maybe fifteen to twenty inches? Normal is around 12.

What perennial food producing plant would survive under those conditions? It can't overflow onto the street or the sidewalk, and any harvest has to be above ground. It has to tolerate months of freezing temperatures and also 100+ in the summer, with 0 humidity. Any ideas?
 
pollinator
Posts: 1438
Location: Bendigo , Australia
90
dog gear plumbing earthworks bee building homestead
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
You may be able to improve the sands water holding capacity by growing a green mulch. Some of the plants used in Australia go down 4 feet and they would fill the sand with organic matter.
Its a particular type of radish that does that.
On you hill in the garden have you thought of creating a small swale to hold a 1/2 moon shaped area of rainwater, thus enabling that to soak into the ground, rather than run ioff?
 
gardener
Posts: 378
Location: In view of the Chiricahua Mountains, AZ
196
dog duck forest garden fish fungi chicken cooking bee greening the desert
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Prickly pear can tolerate those things.  That's a hard to beat plant, edible leaves, lovely fruit, and extra leaves can be compost or fodder....
 
Lauren Ritz
pollinator
Posts: 463
Location: Utah
127
cat forest garden fungi foraging food preservation bee medical herbs writing greening the desert
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

John C Daley wrote:You may be able to improve the sands water holding capacity by growing a green mulch. Some of the plants used in Australia go down 4 feet and they would fill the sand with organic matter.
Its a particular type of radish that does that.
On you hill in the garden have you thought of creating a small swale to hold a 1/2 moon shaped area of rainwater, thus enabling that to soak into the ground, rather than run ioff?


I'm using sweet potatoes to fix the soil in other areas. Commercial varieties, so large roots, and they appear to be digging deep so all that nice root mass is going right where it needs to be. :) I'll be using them in another area this year, one which will be planted next spring.

The problem with the "hill" is that Dad still wants grass. I'm maintaining that one area with grass for him, not that he uses it. A large swale would be ideal, but I'm thinking I'll do it just below the wall and use it to water the corner garden. Still thinking about that one.
 
Posts: 65
17
forest garden fungi trees
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Consider planting a few *Hardy Kiwis* along your chain-link fenceline, and the plants could use them as a trellis while visually softening the metal texture of the fence. Hardy Kiwis can survive frigid temperatures and a variety of conditions.  They require both male and female plants for good production.

https://garden.org/learn/articles/view/656/

I'm a sucker for *archways and trellises* -- perhaps a series of archways over the sidewalk could connect another perennial vining crop from the street side of the sidewalk. (Of course, one may need to be mindful of any height restrictions for traffic visibility if planting near the driveway or traffic corners.)  

*Thornless blackberries* could be enjoyed as people walk under such archways.  

You could train your annual vining crops up them, too.
 
Lauren Ritz
pollinator
Posts: 463
Location: Utah
127
cat forest garden fungi foraging food preservation bee medical herbs writing greening the desert
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

George Yacus wrote:Consider planting a few *Hardy Kiwis* along your chain-link fenceline, and the plants could use them as a trellis while visually softening the metal texture of the fence. Hardy Kiwis can survive frigid temperatures and a variety of conditions.  They require both male and female plants for good production.

https://garden.org/learn/articles/view/656/

I'm a sucker for *archways and trellises* -- perhaps a series of archways over the sidewalk could connect another perennial vining crop from the street side of the sidewalk. (Of course, one may need to be mindful of any height restrictions for traffic visibility if planting near the driveway or traffic corners.)  

*Thornless blackberries* could be enjoyed as people walk under such archways.  

You could train your annual vining crops up them, too.

Those are some good ideas. City codes say that anything less than 30 feet from the corner needs to be 4 feet or less (which is why we ended up with a 4 foot chainlink fence instead of a 6 foot sight barrier), so I'm rather restricted in that sense. The area farthest from the corner is under almost constant shade during the summer, but an arch over the sidewalk...hm. I'll have to think about that one.

Hardy kiwi have already died a couple times, but it's a thought for the future after the soil is fixed.
gift
 
Collection of 14 Permaculture/Homesteading Cheat-Sheets, Worksheets, and Guides
will be released to subscribers in: soon!
reply
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic