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what to do with land that has salted up.  RSS feed

 
rose macaskie
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      WHat to do about land that has salted up, started to appear on the manuring desert land because of the geoff lawson you tube video on "Greening the Desert" by the dead sea and it seems to me it would be less confusing if  what to do with salty land had its own page.

  Goef Lawtons video that mentions his work getting salt levels dropping is "Greening the desert"
        I want to know what paul stamets has to say on mushrooms as de salinators for one.
              Anyone else know anything about farming salt lands? Agri rose macaskie.
 
                          
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Good question Rose

my old mate google came up with this, looks like it will fit into permie peramitors

www.worldfeeder.com/reclaiming-salt-land.html

A very good subject for googling away a night many options but not all would suit permie principles

Bird
 
Jennifer Smith
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That is SO cool bird!  I was thinking along the lines of asparagus and was racking my brain for other salt tolerant plants.  This stuff looks to be great.
 
                          
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and it's local too, well for America in Australia a lot of salty areas grow old man saltbush, apparently good fodder and exelent mulch silver in colour

Another good link

www.saltlandgenie.org.au

Bird
 
rose macaskie
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  That is great, bremuda grass grows in salt alnd and really fast, does it do for pasture land? As it is grass and so presumably good as pasture it made me remember there is a type of french lamb that comes from salt marshes i think its called mutton agnew, maybe i made that name up, i should look that up because evidently the producers of this lamb are farming in salt marshes.
  Cnn had some program on about farming with sea water in Bahia Kino. if i remember right that would be another answer.
  looked up the salt marsh mutton and it is of "pré salé", of salt feilds, it seems that what grows in pré salé is glass wort so called because it used to be burned so they could have soda for glass making and sea lavender which is a plant all those who have bought dry flowers will recognise , i am not sure that this is what the salt pasture sheep eat, it is just what grows there i have not managed to get as much information as i would have liked.
  Grass wort is a tye of salicornia a plant used in the sea water farms in bahia Kino in mexico.

  The salt marsh district in france is called the Carmargue a place famouse for its horses and bulls apparently there is bull fighting in Arles a town of hte district wehere van gogh lived .. A newyork person called david something seems to write a lot in it but i did not manage to open his articles. agri rose macaskie.
 
rose macaskie
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    geoff lawton in his greening the desert video is greening salty desert and he speaks of putting in normal permaculture strategies water harvesting and planting a food forest nitrogen fixing trees and fruit trees dates and popmegranites an dsuch and the salt with drawing he say it got locked up became inert or in solubal . one comment n his video said somethign abuot the salt becoming part of some other molecule some molecule htat needs a sodium or chlorine atom i suppse an d so changed . i don't have details on such a process.

  Another australian permaculturist and horse man had a salty farm and decided that he would dam the river to hold it up a while, he thinks  water is the liver and kidneys of the land and should meander an dget held up pond. that you should have wetlands instead of drained ones and he increased the vegetation and allowed hard weeds so as to get mulch and he cured the salty land the comment of some young scietists taking samples of his water which they said was very biodinamic, was that the healthy bit was maybe sitting on the salty bit and living inspite of the salty under layer but it seemed from the way they talked that they were just guessing.
  He went broke and lost the family but that could have been because though he was a good permaculturist he was a bad buisness man , he did green the land and that his family was difficult, his wife looked very smart, she might have wanted to do what the Jones did rather than to do things that were veiwed as odd. He got taken on by a rich man who wanted his farm greened and is living happily ever after it seems.  agri rose macaskie.
     
 
rose macaskie
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  I have more information to put under tihis topic i started myself.
  I was looking at peprmaculture you tube videos and i whatched the one called "greening Eritrea".
  It was the man who was using sea water to irrigate the desert in Bahia Kino again and the best description of what he does i have found.
  Eritrea is somewhere abouve Somalia, above the pirates, in an area with a desert coast in the red sea.
    He is a he from Arizona University and one person on internet said that was the place to find Paul Stamets, so they must have some ecology department there.
  He makes a canal taking sea water inland, i suppose it has to be in a flattish place and uses the sea water for shrimp farms and then, enriched with the manure of the shrimps, uses it to irigate feilds of glass wort, salicornia, and then on to irrigate a forest of mangroves and then back out into the sea.
        Salt wort can be used as a vegatable or for fodder apparently and it has lots of seed that is good for making vegetable oil or for feed. The mangrove recuperate the ecology of the place and also their leaves are good for fodder. The shrimps serve for export as well as for feeding the Eritreans.

He turns the desert green on the coast and talks of how many thousands of miles of desert coast there are to turn green.
    I have read somewhere else  that he says that though he has been doing this for some time somewhere, he land has not salted up. A lot of somewheres, i have to cheque out my information again. agri rose macaskie.
 
                              
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Bermuda grass is grown much here in Florida and the sell Bermuda hay.  Now whatever they have done to the special "world Feeder" Bermuda to make it extra salt tolerant I don't know but I will warn those people who don't actually need hay or salt tolerant aggressive grass, keep it far from your garden plots!  This stuff is good at growing where you don't want it and really hard to get rid of.
 
Jennifer Smith
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Rose,
I like it when you don't have all your facts just fine.  Sometimes when you do have all your facts and figures your posts can be too technical for me to read quickly and I have to skip parts.  It is always nice to hear from you though.
 
rose macaskie
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        When i read technical books i find  i pick up a bit one day and another bit six mounths later, usually I only read the bit that interests me when i get the book and later on another bit and sometimes in the end i have read all the book.
  Also the first time i read something I notice one part, it srikes me so that there is some other detail i don't notice and i notice other details on re-reading it.  Maybe i wouldnot re-read it if i was not checking the information because i was trying to  write about it, that obliges me to be technical.
    I find though i don't read a book about something that interests me ar first at the end of ten years i have got through a lot of it. Some books jsut never end up intereswting me though i thought they would . i spend a long time in book shops so as not to buy useless books when they are expensive.
  Thanks for the comment nice to here from you again, maybe i should write an introduction so that you know whats coming and if its important for you. I think people need all the stuff, then they can make an informed choice but not maybe all at once.
      I must get it wrong sometimes i have read technical books and others that contradict them in some points then i have to find a thrird book and fourth to try and work out which is right.agri rose macaskie.
 
rose macaskie
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i get so impatient about spending time on reading that I can hardly bare to read slower bits too. rose.
 
                  
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There is a farmer in Australia called Peter Andrews and he has developed a system called Natural Sequence Farming which looks at water movement through the landscape. if you were to google him or his system you may be able to find some ways to combat your salt problems. I am fairly sure this is the same farmer alluded to by rose macaskie.
 
                                
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Beets can tolerate salt. They were originally a maritime plant. I would look to other plant families that come from the beach environment to remove salt from the soil. Just don't compost their parts, sell the crop off or remove it some way from the premises.
 
                              
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It may depend on how salty the land is.  There are many plants that are salt tolerant to a point, heck some people like salty tomatoes.  And if the area is tropical or sub tropical there are many plants that are listed as to their salt tolerance at some of the tropical nursery's I've looked at (tropical areas are often islands with lots of ocean front property and people often need to know what can be planted near the beach. 

That brings me to mangroves and sea grapes.  try researching some plants that grow right in salt water, like mangroves, they should be salt tolerant (I don't know if they have much use other than helping protect the land from hurricane storm surge and providing great wildlife habitat.)  And I've seen sea grapes growing just above the high tide mark in south Florida and they do have edible fruit.  The poor sea grape plant growing in my yard doesn't do much, probably too cold here for it.
 
                            
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FRED wrote:
There is a farmer in Australia called Peter Andrews....


Yes! Thank you! I saw videos on Peter Andrews a long time ago and couldn't remember his name for the life of me. Really wanted to go back to them. Genius man this Peter Andrews!

Reminds me a lot of sepp holzer. Particularly because they both seem to have a ....what will  I call it....a certain independence of social....consciousness. If you allow me to use that term...and they both come up with these incredibly simple solutions that no-one ever seemed to have thought off...

Pascal
 
                          
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peter andrews also has fourum
 
                            
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Bird wrote:
peter andrews also has fourum


Is that your really polite way to tell me that i should leave this one?

(just kidding)

Pascal
 
                          
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no you just made me venture over for a visit, and ill just might become regular there aswell
 
Joel Hollingsworth
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Good to know that about beets.

The same is true of asparagus, and New Zealand spinach.

I understand barley tends to tolerate salt better than other grains, and some varieties are particularly good.

I don't know of a good salt-tolerant nitrogen fixer. I guess azolla can grow in brackish water.
 
Chelle Lewis
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Let’s talk about rising salts in the demise of forest species: When rain falls on forests we have water storage. When forests are removed we have evaporation. When forests absorb this rain it travels downwards and takes with it salts produced from the breakdown of rocks. The trees act as biological pumps that keep these salts at deep levels. Any evaporation from the leaves of the tree is pure water. This is all good for the atmosphere and the soil. When the forests are removed and the salt levels rise to three feet below the surface then trees are suddenly and mysteriously affected by bugs and pathogens. The real cause is the imbalance in the soil caused by rising salts. The onslaught on the tree makes it susceptible to pests and disease. When these trees die and salt levels rise higher, then crops are affected too and become weakened. When salt levels rise to the surface then we have created an inhospitable soil environment that is easily seen.
http://edenparadigm.blogspot.com/2009/10/trees-to-forests.html
 
rose macaskie
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cyara interesting quote . It makes me want to do a lot of research. since i don't have much posibilities of doing experiments i try to find someone who has done them for me when there is something i would like to understand better have more information on or doubt some part of i try to find ansewers among the experiments of others..

      I think bill mollison mentions trees having a good effect on salt levels because they lower the water table take the salt water out of reach. Geoff Lawton says that if salt is washed down you just get a situation that is even harder to cure in the long run?  greening the desert video. He just says he does not know why the salt level dropped.
evaporation from trees may be pure water but leaf fall? What things might not plants realease themselves of in leaf fall?
 
  I wonder about excretion of poisonouse substances in plants, they must have some excretory methods.
     Pines if wounded drip elaborated sap resin not water, transpire water and exude resin.   
      Junipers the same, the first turpentine comes from Juniperus Thurifera in France, according to one bit about this tree i read .
     These junipers grow in the French Alpes as well as in Spain.
     One year the willows in my patch lost their leaves or many of them in summer and i found the information  that willows sometimes do this and next year they recuperate . The new neighbor 's efflluent was going into the stream that year, i think, before his drains were made. I thought maybe this leaf fall is due to some substance in the water the willows dont like, washing up liquid or washing powder, I thought the leaf fall might be a sort of excretory method, put the poisons in the leaves and drop them. The problem is that the poison will then fall at the feet of the trees ready to be picked up next year. Some leaves might get carried away by the wind and if the trees live in places were live stock pass get eaten and so dispersed by the live stock and cease to exist in anyone bit of land in concentrations that seriously affect the plants.
 
    The tamarisk or many varieties of tamarisk, have glands that sweat salt on their branches all except the trunk and biggest branches,  they can live with with salt, so though they don't transpire salt the exude it and so manage to live in salty ground.
     I was going to suggest tamarisks for curing salty land, you could biomine the salt off the branches so cleaning up the land. agri rose macaskie.
 
Joel Hollingsworth
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rose macaskie wrote: I was going to suggest tamarisks for curing salty land, you could biomine the salt off the branches so cleaning up the land.


Wow. There are probably lots of ions other than sodium that this would work for, especially if you're willing to do some selective breeding. What a great idea!
 
rose macaskie
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thanks joel though biomining is not my idea its to be found if you look up bioremediation in google for example still i agree its a great idea.
  you taLK OF IONS ITS WHAT I WANTED A SCIENTIST , DO YOU KNOW IF SALT CAN BE BROKEN DOWN IF PLANTS OF FUNGI OR OTHER ORGANISMS BREAK DOWN THE SALT INTO SODIUM AND CHLORINE can the plant then use them to form molecules which include sodiom or chlorine and are not salt . i am going to correst the block capitals later have to go out now. rose.
 
Joel Hollingsworth
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Salt breaks up into sodium ions and chloride ions as a part of the process of dissolving into water.

Human nerves are a well-known use of biological ion "pumps", which pull ions of a certain charge onto one side of a membrane. As a nerve fires, ions are allowed back through the membrane and they re-unite, and that electrical current opens up the neighboring section of membrane, much the same way that dominoes fall.

Humans generate hydrochloric (aka muriatic) acid for use in the stomach. The chlorine for this ultimately comes from salt.

A biologist would probably talk about fish gills and kidneys: I seem to recall ion pumps are important for both of those, too, but I don't know enough.

Plants definitely do this sort of chemistry all the time, but the methods they use probably have some stringent limits in terms of intensity.

The Chlorox company, which started here in Oakland, were for a long time specialists at separating sodium from chlorine, to varying degrees. One of the least-intense products they made, the bleach their name has become a generic term for, is of course able to de-nature most biological chemicals. So an enzyme that tries to do this sort of thing too intensely, would not be able to finish before being destroyed by its own reaction products.
 
rose macaskie
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geoff lawton in his bit greening the desert thought the salt on the land he permaculturised near the dead sea had been denaturised, as the university showed that the salt levels had dropped and he had used a minimum of irrigation that was one of the possibliities he thought of.
  i went to the dead sea when i was iholidaying in a kibbutz, entering ion the north west siide not the jordanian one and it was so incredibly lacking in vegetation that the story otf the death of the scape goat seemed much more likely part of the scenery than the idea of geoff lawton greening it is, maybe those who haven't been their won't realise what a difficult place it is to green. 
  I think that you need scientists who discover exactly what happened in geoff Lawtons plot because it would be easier to convince people that his method worlked if, as well as haivng the proof of the peice of green land he made you had the scientific explaination.
  i have just looked up ions and sodium, it seems among other things there are some sorts of rock with sodium in them.
 
  Ended up the navigations reading about "fog fences"  and "air wells", things designed to collect the humidity from the air by cooling it to dew point. and with a wikipedia scientific article on  "wetting"  that you might find interesting. Maybe as you are ia scientist you know all about it anyway and so it will be boring for you.  rose macaskie.
 
rose macaskie
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joel hollingsworth I shoould have started the alst reply with so you do think that plants and animals and such could change the chemical nature of the salt so desalinising it .
    I  also wondered if it reverted back to being salt again very easily if you changed it into some other substance. agri rose macaskie.
 
Chelle Lewis
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rose macaskie wrote:
DO YOU KNOW IF SALT CAN BE BROKEN DOWN IF PLANTS OF FUNGI OR OTHER ORGANISMS BREAK DOWN THE SALT INTO SODIUM AND CHLORINE can the plant then use them to form molecules which include sodiom or chlorine and are not salt . i am going to correst the block capitals later have to go out now. rose.
I know that certain fungi actually lock up the salt and make the land useful again. Heavy mulching with enough humidity can bring about this kind of fungi growth. Check out Geoff Lawton's video "Greening the Desert" available on YouTube. This is what happened when they took the worst land imaginable - like a dust bowl.... in an area with the lowest rainfall of any nation and turned it into land producing figs in only 4 years. This was the quintessential in Permaculture success. No project could be as tough as this.... and it was extremely successful.

Chelle
 
rose macaskie
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cyara what do they mean exactly by locking up the salt, do you know? I have to go back to reading about bioremediation and maybe then i will know myself. agri rose macaskie.
 
rose macaskie
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cyara do you know what sort of fungi it was did lawson seed the land with it as well as heavy mulching, i suppose i should pay out for his tape to find out. agri rose macaskie.
 
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