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Hugelkultur instead of fences?  RSS feed

 
Kevin MacBearach
Posts: 213
Location: Beavercreek, Oregon
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We just bought a property that shares about a 50' stretch along the property line with a Christmas tree farm, which are quite common here in Oregon. I want to try to create a buffer between the farm and my property to block any residual herbicide spray that they use. If I put a hugelkultur raised bed there, it would just follow along the property line with no regard to wind currents or frost flow but would hopefully block some of what goes on over there.

Since I have a couple cows and some chickens, I would use these raised beds for small trees, shrubs, and herbs that the cows and chickens could graze on during their rotations threw that part of the field.

Has anyone done this? Using a 6' raised bed as a living barrier, instead of a fence or hedge?

Kevin
 
Morgan Morrigan
Posts: 1400
Location: Verde Valley, AZ.
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you want to look up Belgian Fence, and espaliers, and i think it is Hawthorne fence, which is like a belgian, but you just hack partway thru a tough tall growing shrub, and lean it over.
they were used for centuries as living cattle fences.

Would still be a good idea to build a double swale along the line, and interplant some tough, shorter stuff with thorns. does honeyberry or serviceberry have thorns? Prob dont want rasberry, cuz you will have to mess with the belgian fairly often for the first 3 years.

depending on height of full grown tree, you can get a 20 foot fence, that will keep out deer too.

could also just put in grape trellis, and grapes come in so late, prop wont be a spraying issue.
 
Kevin MacBearach
Posts: 213
Location: Beavercreek, Oregon
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I opted against laying a hedge because of the time and labor as well as I couldn't use it to grow much edible stuff. What I was thinking was to grow more edible stuff for the cows and chickens on my side of he raised bed, and less edible, more barrier type stuff on the far side.
 
Brenda Groth
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Location: North Central Michigan
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i would say a lot will depend on the wind and the other trees in the area..

IF there is bare land up to the hugel on the windy side, then the down wind side will get some disturbance from the barrier..so let say your wind comes from the west and you are planting your hugel bed on the west and it will be partly blocking the wind causeing disturbance on the east side of it..then I would consider maybe putting some fast growing evergreens on the windward side of the hugel bed to diffuse the wind first. In Michigan we would likely use white pine or red pine for that as they grow very quickly and diffuse the wind well. then you can plant your hugel berm with just about anything and it will be protected from the wind and will get sun in morning and early afternoon.

IF it is parallel with the wind it could cause a wind tunnel, which could also be destructive and may even cause worse problems downwind..so possibly it would be better to curve the berms to break up the wind tunnel effect..maybe in an s shape??

If it is on the downwind side of your property then the neighbors will be the ones to be concerned about the turbulance..
 
Kevin MacBearach
Posts: 213
Location: Beavercreek, Oregon
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Hi Brenda. The area I'm trying to block off actually is on the west side of us. I haven't noticed any wind, other than a breeze, coming from the west. It does come from the south so the hugelkultur-berm WILL be parallel with the wind but I don't see it as causing too much wind since this berm would only be about 50', and there are trees . Guess I could make it curvy but I wouldn't want it to be too curvy so that it takes up valuable pasture space on my side, cause I have minimal land space.

I don't want to plant large conifers on the west side since it would create too much shade in the late afternoon, plus it might upset the farmers next to me cause of the shade it would cause them early in the day.

How much of an s-curve would be enough to break up the wind flow?
 
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