• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Anne Miller
  • Pearl Sutton
  • Nicole Alderman
  • Mike Haasl
  • r ranson
  • paul wheaton
master gardeners:
  • jordan barton
  • John F Dean
  • Rob Lineberger
  • Carla Burke
  • Jay Angler
  • Greg Martin
  • Ash Jackson
  • Jordan Holland

Another "New to Permaculture" person here ... Wow, it's almost overwhelming!

Posts: 7
Location: Central Arkansas Zone 7b
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Eh, almost? Who am I kidding!

Anyway, I've poked around looking at Permaculture for years (i.e. a video here, an article there) but haven't really given it much "thought". And by "thought" I mean actually LOOKING at what is around me and realizing what a daunting, but possibly rewarding, journey this can be.

My husband and I live on 3 acres in Central Arkansas. The worst property most people can imagine for trying to "garden" or do anything "productive". Now, having said that, the following comments are from my "previous" perspective (i.e. how I would have described it BEFORE I started getting deeper into the whole Permaculture idea).

The soil is practically non-existent and what is here is full of rocks. Suitable for rock gardens but veggie gardens? Forget about it! The land rises and falls with nary a level spot on it (except the two that DH made purposely for the House and our "parking lot" for our semi's). When it rains, the rain runs down the driveway like a small creek and has obliterated the driveway to the point that at the bottom (where we park) is a mucky mess. The Pines are falling around our ears (blown over by winds or killed by the "pine bark beetle"). We've got quite a few cedar trees, which are useless for much except posts. The Hickory trees attract "some" wildlife but generally just make a mess! It's on the North West side of a "mountain" so it gets ALL the heavy winds (which always seem to come from the Southwest/West). We have a "seasonal creek" but it's at the bottom southwest corner of the property and is virtually useless.

Now, though ... that "gully" at the top of the property that's about 5' deep, 10' wide and tapers (downhill) into more level terrain ... The more level terrain end can be built up and it can quite possibly be turned into a pond (can you say catfish?) for aquaculture. The sloping/descending terrain can be used to our benefit for capturing water. Not quite sure what to do about the driveway but I'm sure I can figure something out! The pine trees can be chopped up and used to create Hugelkulture beds along with any deadwood from the oaks & hickory trees. That will also make it so we don't have to "level" huge swaths of land in order to put in a "row garden". Winds are winds and there's nothing i can do to "change" that but I may be able to utilize/harness some of that energy for other things. Like possibly "pumping" water from that "useless" seasonal creek for watering up higher on the property.

Anyway, at the moment they're all just thoughts and idea's and while they're interesting to think about, I've really to to figure out how to make it all work. I'm still learning about how to map contours (which with this property is going to be critical) and what needs to be cleared out, what should be left where it is, how to go about building a pond, figuring out where it (they) should be, etc., etc.

So I'll probably lurk alot for the next bit, but I may have questions too. We'll just see where this all goes!

Posts: 7926
Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Welcome to permies Carol.

Indeed, it can be overwhelming when you first get here. So much to absorb.
The folks are friendly here, so don't be afraid to ask if you have questions.

Posts: 2679
Location: Phoenix, AZ (9b)
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi Carol - and welcome to Permies!

Sounds like you have a perfect property for the application of that old permaculture principle - "the problem is the solution". Start poking around and asking questions regarding your problem area - chances are, at least a few people here have had the same problem and came up with some wonderful solutions.

Permaculture can be a blast. I honestly prefer challenging properties over easy ones - but hey, I could just be a contrarian. I do live in a desert after all.
Just put the cards in their christmas stocking and PRESTO! They get it now! It's like you're the harry potter of permaculture. richsoil.com/cards
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic