Note to moderators: I put an identical post in the Southwest forum, but it got no responses, so I am moving it here. You can delete the other one.
Xeric oak landscapes are one good source for building a guild - (acorns, etc). And the olive-grape-artichoke-purslane-goat group is pretty common in the settled parts of the Mediterranean.
Maybe Pain's book would be helpful...
I seem to recall that Pain was in chapparel and he was harvesting the brush before fire could take it, replacing a fire cycle, with planned carbon concentration and digestion... neat idea conceptually. You'd need a donor site...
a few fruit trees that grew exceptionally well when i lived in socal were peaches, pomegranates, and figs. and yields were always above average. all would grow with no care and maybe one watering a summer once established( and yea i know it gets HOT) but they thrive on it.
also any kind of citrus will do well. we had everything from lemons, to calomondin's to kaffir lime trees. they can also all be kept to manageable size so you can fit more variety's.
What about sowing seeds in dry places like socal? How would you sow trees on none diverse land for example? Seedballs? Mulch? Is it possible to retain moisture in first few weeks after rainy season, so the seeds can germinate and grow a bit before heat comes?
I think some people pull up anything they don't know because they consider it is not natural to the place greatly reducing the natural variety of plants someone pulled up a bush that grows on the corner of my land and just beyond they pulled up what grew beyond and i suspect it was because they did not recognise it as being natural to the place, but it is in my book of plants that are natural to that part of Spain. It is i suppose funny if keen ecologist start uncounsciously reducing the natural diversity. A bit annoying and worrying too.
In permaculture you are meant to have an enormouse variety of plants the monkey puzzle tree is one tree that produces and enorouse quantity of nuts and it is not native to England but its high potential for fattening us makes it a good permeaculture tree. so th etrees natural to a place are not permaculture goal. production and saving soils is the goal and independence. rose macaskie.
I guess you are best off looking for native trees that will grow in your area and native understory..that is the way i tend to go here..however i also try to put in a few non natives, such as cherries, to provide foods that we can eat and preserve for winter..
as they are native to a similar temperate zone (Japan) they also do well here..so if you can find a similar nonnative zone as yours you might find suggestions from that area.
Plankl wrote:What about sowing seeds in dry places like socal? How would you sow trees on none diverse land for example? Seedballs? Mulch? Is it possible to retain moisture in first few weeks after rainy season, so the seeds can germinate and grow a bit before heat comes?
I'd plant a little before the rainy season if at all possible, and irrigate a little to establish the root structure and soil ecosystem so that the rain is as useful as can be.
Doing the math one night with a chart of average and extreme temperature & rain for Oakland, and some studies of how things grow in other parts of the world, I came to the conclusion that the first week of February is the best time to plant corn here. (Corn can produce well in Northern summers that are colder than my winter, and farmers in India get good results during a dry season that resembles my wet season.) You're a lot farther south than I, and so you have even more of an option to schedule everything around moisture, rather than warmth.
The methods you mention are also good. Since it's an urban area, I'd be tempted to mulch with scrap dimensional lumber courtesy of Craigslist, and either use poultry or foster local predators to control the slugs that will accumulate underneath. Maybe nail together 2x4s into planks a couple feet wide and of a length you can easily flip end-to-end; like a digging board, they'll prevent compaction, and you can use one year's paths as the next year's beds. Don't put too much work into them, though, because they'll rot after a couple years, and any uneven edges can be filled in with other sorts of mulch.
If you choose poultry, it might also be worthwhile to start them off on beds planted with bad-tasting plants like sesame, so that they get into the habit of focusing on the crawling things you've uncovered. Salamanders have started doing that work in my garden, and I'm pretty excited.