This is my first post on Permies. I grew huckleberries, and mine were awful. I would love to taste some good ones.
We have run a sustainable farm for over 10 years. But, between the horrid drought Texas went through last year and a major cancer battle, we are back at the beginning. We understood the idea of designing out the work, but somehow, in the scraping to make the farm pay, we missed the boat on that one. So, another thing to rethink. Our implementation of knowledge was not perfect, but our gardens did produce right through the summer drought last year, long after all other CSAs in the area had shut down. So, our no till, lots of wood chips garden beds are great.
Lately two topics have come up a lot, growing a food forest and huglekultur. We love both ideas, as they both will solve problems for us. That is, once we figure out how to implement them. I have yet to find anyone in SE Texas growing a food forest or doing Huglekulture. And no, we have not taken any permaculture courses. We have been unable to, I am chemically sensitive and no one will run a class in a non-toxic environment that does not allow fragrances. I do have dairy cows, and rabbits to look after, so I can't travel else where for a week or so. But, with the internet, it is amazing what can be learned. Just not as fast or as much fun as taking a course would be.
Is anyone else combining huglekulture and food forests? Our sheep will be back in August and we have pigs arriving in July, so growing food for them is part of the program. Our land turns into forest when not mowed or grazed, so the food forest is appropriate to the land. We are a small farm, only twenty acres, but doing that sustainably is a big job.
I plan to use hugelkultur as the basis for my food forest, still in the planning stages. So far I've not done "real" hugelkultur, instead using buried wood in my vegetable garden, which helped tremendously in the drought.
Kudos to you, Kim! It's a noble task, to work the land, produce food, and do it all sustainably and with the respect for the earth.
I'm in Dallas (backyard gardener), but I think I've had enough of Texas. Time to move to Montana! Just spent two weeks there, felt like home
(I'm originally from Belarus, it's the same as Zone 4 - which is majority of Montana).
Best of luck to you in your endeavors! Let's hope TX will not go into the brutal drought this summer like it did last year.
I hate winter, I had 35 years of real winter and that will do for a lifetime. I love Texas. We moved here 20 years ago from Edmonton Canada and I don't plan on leaving. But yes, drought is a problem and each cycle is getting worse. So, we will go to a huglekultur food forest on our land. The perimeter will be a bermed hedge that grows trees that are good for fodder, as well as for us. All fences will gradually be replaced with hedgerows, that will help keep everyone fed. We are working hard to be sustainable, without outside imports, eventually.
At least that is the general idea at this time. I just signed up to take permaculture on line, so I may find more ideas, but we will build for the conditions.
Kim & Garth Travis
Location: Dallas TX
posted 8 years ago
Oh!! Edmonton - yeah, that must have pretty long winters . Good you're enjoying TX.
All the best.
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
posted 8 years ago
My grandmother was originally from England. She had health problems, and their family Dr. told them that she would probably never see her 18th birthday unless she moved to a more agreeable climate. He suggested "America".
The family had cousins in "America" so they sent her to live with them. After two winters in Churchill, Manitoba ("Polar bear capital of the world"), she realized that this was not what her doctor had in mind. She moved to southern California, and lived to be 89.
Location: Bedias, Texas
posted 8 years ago
Ah, my secret comes out. Yes, originally we moved to Texas for my health. Garth was watching me die slowly, in my thirties. In my fifties, I am healthier and more active than I was in my twenties. But, I do have to get up early to work, it gets very hot in the afternoon here, this time of the year. Almost time to go and milk the cow.
I am taking the course that was recommended on this forum, from: http://www.permaculturevisions.com/ For me, in person courses are a nightmare since I suffer from MCS. [multiple chemical sensitivities] Any time I try to go to something like this, there is always at least one person who has used some kind of toxic product on themselves or their clothing. While often it is not bad enough to kill me, it does make me brain dead, so there is no point in being in the class. Or, the classes are held in places that are toxic, especially if they share space with yoga classes. Aroma therapy is one of the worst offenders. Finding an online course for me is perfect. Also, the cost is not outrageous. And it is kinder to the environment, since I don't have to drive a long distance.