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hugelkultur for grape

 
mostafa ismail
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hi all

I have four acre of grape , invasive weed had taken control over it",pampas grass,". what am doing right now is trying to apply the hugelkultur idea on the rows
under the grape shrubs, I know it would mean lot of work and money , but I can't find other way , in the mean while I won' t be able to add but only branches ,pampas grass scraps and sandy soil, I should mention am in the desert with carbonate calcium soil with high ph ,and there is no rain,we use drip irrigation
now , do you think it's good idea? , do you have a better solution? I would be thankful if you share the thing with me
 
James Colbert
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Grapes are Mediterranean plants which means they are drought tolerant. "Poor" soils often grow great grapes. The yield is less than organic rich well watered grapes but the quality is higher. This is true for most Mediterranean plants. If you water and fertilize (with compost and organic amendments) plants grow faster and larger but are of a lower quality. So Hugelkulture may not be the bet technique for grapes, I say may because I don't have direct experience. Just thought I would bring to your attention the nature of Mediterranean plants in relation to soil quality.
 
mostafa ismail
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James , i must thank you first
then I would like to tell you I have been with grape for almost 10 years , and ever since I started to go organic and things were going downward , like I mentioned
weeds are wild where we are , and in summer. grape can't stand more than 5 days without water , from now on we almost water every day , all of us act this way, we are in the desert , to me there is not other way but to try hogelkulutr , i did try it with 3 guava trees and it did bettr last year
 
Miles Flansburg
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Hello Mostafa, have you seen Geoff Lawtons work? He has a video on Youtube called greening the desert that may give you some ideas. I think swales and hugel beds would be great !

http://permaculturenews.org/2007/03/01/greening-the-desert-now-on-youtube/
 
James Colbert
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I should have asked where you lived Mostafa. If you do live in a true desert type situation perhaps the best compromise would be to bury the wood relatively deep (1m or more) and use sub surface irrigation.
 
mostafa ismail
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Hello Miles
yes am quite familiar with Geoff work , but you made me see the video again , and i was missing this part about putting organic matter half meter deep in soil .
thank you
 
mostafa ismail
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hi James ,
well i live in Cairo Egypt , my farm in south of cairo , Giza , in a lomy soil which is desert that can't hold water at all , we are using drip irrigation.
we can't dig now in the soil we are about to harvest the grape , all we can do is to add organic matter and soil over it
 
Brenda Groth
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2 years ago I buried some aspen logs up against the roots of some grape vines, it has seemed to work OK..but still early to tell this year as my grapes are just beginning to bud
 
Jennifer Smith
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Ok so I do have 5to grape vines and soon my deck will be done (can't plant till finished or will be trompled). What is best site preparation? What to olant with them? Ideas for arbor or trellis? Help please
 
allen lumley
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Location: Northern New York Zone4-5 the OUTER 'RONDACs percip 36''
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All over Afghanistan, in the country, there are low South facing mounds/terracing that were put there for grape production and some grape drying (raisins!)

This man made feature is problematic for 'our boys over there' because no matter how you enter this kind of territory, soon you are giving an advantage
'to the other guy'!

I only posted this because it is such a common figure over there, though many of these mini hugelkulturs are in 'disrepair' -just thought I'd share ! Big Al !
 
Brian Kremer
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Location: Midway ut
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Did you manage the vineyard conventionally before you went organic? Lots of inputs? Water, fertilizer, tilling, pesticides, herbicides?
Grapes and most plants respond to pampering by being less robust with smaller root systems.
In other words if you want to move to a more sustainable system you may need to replant.
I would suggest stages, stress the vineyard a bit, replant what dies, stress further,replant what dies, etc.

 
Andrew Parker
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Location: Salt Lake Valley, Utah, hardiness zone 6b/7a
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Mostafa,

You may want to investigate (if you haven't already) "lasagna" gardening. You ought to be able to use pampas grass cuttings, green and dried, to build up your beds. I am sure hugeltkultur works, but in arid climates it is often difficult or impossible to find large quantities of logs. Grasses and reeds are usually easier, and cheaper, to come by.
 
mostafa ismail
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Brain , Andrew , thank you both
yes my grape raised on conventional , but I stopped that in 2009 , and it seems it lacks nitrogen a lot , and i will take your advice brain
and yes I have been cutting pampas for three years and leaving there for a mulch but it didn't pay ,may be because there is no rain ,
we are depending on dripping irrigation , this year am burying any thing organic , let's hope it will work next time , we allready harvesting now , what is done is done
 
Andrew Parker
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Location: Salt Lake Valley, Utah, hardiness zone 6b/7a
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Mostafa,

If you are using drip irrigation and there is no rain, what is the pampas grass using for water? Do you have a high water table?

I live in a semi-arid zone (not as dry as where you are) and it takes a very long time (often, years) for organic material (grass clippings, wood chips, logs, etc.) to break down if it is not in direct contact with moist soil. Mulch (organic or plastic) is good in conjunction with drip irrigation, in that it slows down or eliminates evaporation from the soil surface which also significantly reduces soil salinization.

I would have to adapt the lasagna method, or hugelkultur, to my local climate. Water is so expensive here that, for now, I am limiting myself to container gardening.

 
mostafa ismail
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Andew

yes logs are not so available , but grape pruning are there , and I bought my slelf a new chines saw chain machine , I will use it for what is there with the pampas grass scrapes , I did mentioned that I did try it last year with 3 guava tress behind the house and it worked very well , by the way I was meaning to make compost out of the grape pruning not meaning to make hugelculture bed , I never heard of hugelculture word by then
 
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