I got a little area on my property that is currently unused.
I'd like to use it for some food production and permaculture experiments.
It's a rectangle about 60ft x 140ft in size, butts up right to the border of my land. All the cut down brush are there from clearing the border.
Unfortunately the field next to it is farmed using conventional methods - pesticides/herbicides/fertilizer.
Right between my border and the farmer's field there is a zone with some brush and trees, about 40 to 60ft wide. I'm hoping it will be at least somewhat effective at blocking the 'cides that farmer used on his grain field.
Would it be a good idea to stealth-plant a bunch of spruce trees in this area to increase the protective effect? The farmer likely would not care or notice at all.
The slope also runs away from my property, my small field being the highest point in the area, so runoff is likely to go the other way.
Would you use this area for growing food or would the proximity of the conventionally farmed grain field put you off? There is exactly 0% chance the farmer will go organic or use it as pasture etc.
Right now there is a ton of brush/young trees up to about 3 inch diameter from the border clearing and some clearing between the large trees.
I'm thinking of using these in some way - my options are to bury them as is to make hugelbeds or make them into biochar first.
Either way they will need to dry out a couple of months first. Most of them are some sort of willow, so likely to to just send up new shoots if I bury them now or not burn too well due to the high moisture content.
Which would you do? Hugel or biochar? I'm leaning towards biochar as it's something that has caught my interest at the moment.
I want to set up some polycultures of mostly annuals, not looking to plant trees here as I have plenty of those in other areas.
Perhaps 'three sisters' as I'm very interested in landrace squash and corn at the moment.
Anyway, I'll probably start by making some conventional raised beds with my rotary plow and depending on what I decide to do with the brush go from there at the end of the season.
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