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What can you do with a small creek?

 
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We're thinking of moving to a place that has a small creek in the back in Northern California. (By small I mean maybe 4-5 feet across, slow moving water.) It's covered with all sorts of grasses, shrubs, vines, and a few big trees, many of them invasive, but we could slowly replace those.

What sorts of vegetables, perennial edibles, or fruits can grow alongside a creek?

Would it be possible to have backyard ducks and let them have access to the creek instead of providing them a pond?
 
pollinator
Posts: 1528
Location: zone 7
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small creeks here in California are a hub of diversity. there are many medicinal and eatable plants and trees that can grow near or on or in the river.

yes you can have ducks that go in the creek. that is until the water starts moving too fast say come winter. by then the winter rains can fill a seasonal pond for the ducks.
 
pollinator
Posts: 4437
Location: North Central Michigan
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lots of people here raise ducks on creeks..one good thing they seldom freeze..elderberries like water and you can grow watercress and marsh marigolds..also you can fish..fish are a good protein food
 
Posts: 19
Location: Missouri
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Bob, does it flow year round? The creek near my boyhood home dried up during the hot summer months.
 
Bob Starn
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That sounds great about the ducks.

I've heard that blueberries, cranberries, and pears can do well by creeks. Are there other fruit truees that do? I know most don't like wet feet.
 
steward
Posts: 2524
Location: FL
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Flowing surface water has so many uses its hard to list them all.

-Ram Pump
This allows for off grid water pressure. Useful for watering livestock and irrigation. If the water is potable, such a device can service a home. It should at least be able to service a flush. If the water was sent through a radiator, it could cool a space in warm weather, warm a space in cool weather.

-Micro Hydro Electric
If the flow is strong enough, it could be used to operate a small turbine to produce electricity.

-Farm Raised Fish
There is the option of using the water to service tanks or using the stream to raise fish in containment areas.

-Acorns
Continuously replenished fresh water is ideal for removing tannins from acorns. Once removed, the acorns are entirely edible, with a wide array of menu possibilities.

-Mill
Constant motion used to turn a shaft offers excellent opportunity for a cottage industry. It is essentially Free Energy. Grind grains, cut lumber, pulverize materials, move air, crush apples to make cider, run a machine...all possible.

 
pollinator
Posts: 1454
Location: Midlands, South Carolina Zone 7b/8a
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I love weeping willow. I have one next to a grey water area but a creek would be so much better.

The willow stems are good for chewing when I have a headache and I also make a willow tea and water seedlings or things I am trying to root. Nice for making wreaths and baskets and tying things with as well.
 
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