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Please help me with my 7 Acres of Old Corn/Soy Bean fields. I want to start a small permaculture

 
Jamey Sturgill
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Hello friends,

I have dreamed of a nice permaculture farm for several years now. I listen to the permies podcasts etc. but now I have my 7 acres and I need help with where to start. It is an old corn field in Delaware. I have a milk cow and a couple milk goats.

What do I do with an old corn field? It is dead now and has corn stalks throughout. Family say disc it and plant grass seed but it is quite expensive and doesn't seem permaculture-like.

Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance.


Jamey
 
John Elliott
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You don't have to disc it, but you should get a nice cover crop in for the winter to build the soil. The more seeds in the blend, the better. Here, this video explains it in detail:



Some brassicas, some chicory, some clover, there are a lot of things that can grow over the Delaware winter. Then next spring you can think about what types of fruit trees and permanent crops can go in. That will give you all winter to plan, which some of us consider the fun part.
 
Jamey Sturgill
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That sounds like a lovely idea! Thanks John!
 
Phillip Swartz
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Location: Upper Midwest - Third Coast - USDA Zone 6a/b
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If this property has a recorded cropping history then you may be able to qualify for cost-sharing through USDA Conservation programs such as EQIP, CRP, and CSP. Many of the programs available can help you pay for the cost of cover crop seed, planting trees, water diversions (swales), fencing, and many other practices. Check with your local NRCS office.

http://sustainableagriculture.net/publications/grassrootsguide/
 
Phillip Swartz
Posts: 38
Location: Upper Midwest - Third Coast - USDA Zone 6a/b
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Just don't mention the word 'permaculture' when you're dealing with the government. They prefer to hear words like Agroforesty, Silvopasture, Alley Cropping, etc.

http://permaculturenews.org/2014/08/22/make-use-usdas-unofficial-support-permaculture/
 
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