Timothy Markus wrote:Hi Johnny, and welcome to Permies! Congratulations on your purchase; the property looks great.
Are you looking to make the land useful by generating income or mostly for personal use?
S Bengi wrote:I would start off with a huge leafy green vegetable garden
Followed by other vegetables (tomatoes, potatoes, squash, radish, etc)
Herbs are another easy one
A bee hive is nice.
A chicken coop, with automatic feeder, so that you could leave for a week is also nice.
bluegill fish pond/pool
With a zone 8, you can plant pretty much any fruit tree. I would aim for native plants and desert/drought friendly plants. While super popular I would avoid apples and peaches.
Now for fruiting vines I like, Grapes, hardy kiwi, fuzzy kiwi, passion fruit
For nuts, I really like Hazel nuts. Pistachios will also do well. Almond is also worth a try too.
When it comes to water. Strawbales as mulch is your friend. Woodchip is even better. Swales on contour to help with rain events is your very best friend, esp at the top of your property. Infiltrating any water that enters your property helps alot.
Anne Pratt wrote:Such interesting land! If you've been reading about permaculture, you know that one of your first tasks is to live there and observe. California flora/landscapes are so foreign to me, and despite the excellent photos I can't observe much so far (!). Are some of the standing trees dead, or is this a seasonal issue? Dead trees can make great hugelkultur.
I also notice a lot of aged wood chips near the top of the stairs. Great! And a terraced section next to the stairs - but are those treated railroad ties? That might not be the place for edibles. (And why do the stairs look so much like an escalator?)
Wherever the chicken bedding/litter was dumped is likely a great spot for a garden, if the chickens have been gone for 6 months or more. Awesome fertility! Are you a gardener already? If not, definitely read up on it. There is so much to learn, and fortunately, mistakes are usually cheap! Think about what you and your family like to eat, and learn about what is easy to grow. Don't try too many things that are hard to grow. Easy: brassicas started from seedlings, cucumbers, summer squash, carrots, radishes (the easiest!), potatoes. Tomatoes can be fussy - they get diseases, need fertility but not excess nitrogen (otherwise the crop is tomato leaves!). But don't be afraid to try!
I always put in perennials when I first arrive, observation be damned. I like to get them started from tiny plants or seed, so that my garden starts to fill out the next year. I wonder how this works in your USDA zone. Is there winter? Is there a rainy season and a dry season? So much to learn. But I would figure out where a couple of fruit and nut trees could go sooner rather than later, and plant them very carefully. That way, you're one more year closer to having fruit! You can plant more later.
Congratulations! So exciting. It looks like a beautiful spot.