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Basic Hugelkultur Questions

 
Merideth Richardson
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I read the article on richsoil.com, but there were a few things I couldn't see.

1. How do you keep the soil and mulch from eroding off the top and sides?

2. Will the plant roots enter the rotting wood, just as if it were soil? And Will this happen by the second year?

3. How do you 'refill' these things once the logs are completely decomposed? I see eventually you could just start over on the same place, but what if you chose to plant perennials?

4. How do you keep rodents out of them? If I were a wood-gnawing critter, these would make pretty good homes.

5. And roley-poley insects? Will they hurt live plants? Because they've got to be going bananas in those logs.
 
John Elliott
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1. How do you keep the soil and mulch from eroding off the top and sides?


Sometimes it does. If it gets to be too much, rake it up and toss it back on top. If you have a thickly growing canopy though, erosion is usually not a problem.

2. Will the plant roots enter the rotting wood, just as if it were soil? And Will this happen by the second year?


Yes. See the video here. No reason why it won't continue year after year until the wood falls apart and is better classified as 'dirt'.

3. How do you 'refill' these things once the logs are completely decomposed? I see eventually you could just start over on the same place, but what if you chose to plant perennials?


Keep mulching the top of it. Not just grass clippings, but real chunks of wood.

4. How do you keep rodents out of them? If I were a wood-gnawing critter, these would make pretty good homes.


See the video in #2 and what his thoughts were about the rodent.

5. And roley-poley insects? Will they hurt live plants? Because they've got to be going bananas in those logs.


Sowbugs are your friends, they only eat dead vegetation. If there are too many to handle, the chickens will make short work of them.



 
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