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Permaculture attempt in high desert of California  RSS feed

 
kevin stewart
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Hi jon
So sorry, I gave sam half of what I had left over and just planted the rest. I'm always collecting bags of seeds so if I come across some more I will send them to you. I will collect more in a couple of months.
Yesterday I thought I saw what looked like thirty or fourty palo verde trees.
I was careening down the 405 freeway at the time so maybe today I'll have a closer look.

I just got my shade cloth from amazon. Did you know that their prices change?
Three months ago $50.00
Two months ago $63.00
Last week $33.00
Same product, same company.
Is their pricing like the airlines? Buy your ticket on a wednesday? Phase of the moon?
 
John Polk
steward
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Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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Is their pricing like the airlines? Buy your ticket on a wednesday? Phase of the moon?

Supply & Demand?
When it is scorching hot (July/Aug), prices are at a peak?
Now that it has cooled off, drop the price?
Check back in the middle of December, and see how low they will go.
 
Sam Fel
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Marco Banks wrote:Great thread.  I live southwest of you -- LA county.

I've seen olives and apricots do well in the high desert.  Apricots are surprisingly tough little suckers.  They are drought tolerant and fast growing.  If you can find someone in the area who has an apricot tree that has done well, get as many seeds from him or her as you can, and use them as pioneer species.  Start them in pots, and then get them in the ground as soon as they are viable --- able to stand up to the wind, dry conditions and the many things that will want to munch of them.  You could make a little cage around them with chicken wire until they are established.


Thanks dude! Yea that's what I've been doing.. Starting them in pots until they are strong enough to put in the ground. Chicken wire is a must if it's not planted next to my tent. Apricots and almonds are definitely on my to get list but I think I'll buy those as trees and not start from seed need some fast windbreak

I'm building and training an army of mesquite to go whip the wind into submission. They are 50 strong and I'm gonna prepare another 50 seeds today
 
Jon Snow
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kevin stewart wrote:Hi jon
So sorry, I gave sam half of what I had left over and just planted the rest. I'm always collecting bags of seeds so if I come across some more I will send them to you. I will collect more in a couple of months.
Yesterday I thought I saw what looked like thirty or fourty palo verde trees.
I was careening down the 405 freeway at the time so maybe today I'll have a closer look.

I just got my shade cloth from amazon. Did you know that their prices change?
Three months ago $50.00
Two months ago $63.00
Last week $33.00
Same product, same company.
Is their pricing like the airlines? Buy your ticket on a wednesday? Phase of the moon?


  Thanks Kevin. I'm going to my cabin this weekend. Ill be on the lookout for some mesquite seeds.

I have 2 Australian Bottle trees (Brachychiton Populneus). I hear great things about this tree. Very drought tolerant. I have one planted in my yard in LA and the other in a 15 gallon pot. I will plant the other on my property in the High Desert.  I rarely water them and they are doing well. They produce pods with seeds similar to mesquites. Ill keep you guys updated on how well it does. Here's a link with info on the tree

http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/57651/
 
Sam Fel
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Jon Snow wrote:
kevin stewart wrote:Hi jon
So sorry, I gave sam half of what I had left over and just planted the rest. I'm always collecting bags of seeds so if I come across some more I will send them to you. I will collect more in a couple of months.
Yesterday I thought I saw what looked like thirty or fourty palo verde trees.
I was careening down the 405 freeway at the time so maybe today I'll have a closer look.

I just got my shade cloth from amazon. Did you know that their prices change?
Three months ago $50.00
Two months ago $63.00
Last week $33.00
Same product, same company.
Is their pricing like the airlines? Buy your ticket on a wednesday? Phase of the moon?


  Thanks Kevin. I'm going to my cabin this weekend. Ill be on the lookout for some mesquite seeds.

I have 2 Australian Bottle trees (Brachychiton Populneus). I hear great things about this tree. Very drought tolerant. I have one planted in my yard in LA and the other in a 15 gallon pot. I will plant the other on my property in the High Desert.  I rarely water them and they are doing well. They produce pods with seeds similar to mesquites. Ill keep you guys updated on how well it does. Here's a link with info on the tree

http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/57651/


Hey Jon I visited my friend in Hemet and he had a mesquite tree with all it pods dropped already. I picked them up and that what I've been planting from. Email me and I can send them to you.

Kevin be safe driving! I know how distracting tree hunting can be!

Can anyone ID this mesquite for me? I think it might be honey but I'm looking for velvet mesquite too.
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Hemet pods
 
Kevin Elmore
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Sam,

The pods look like they might be from a Chilean Mesquite.  For positive ID you will probably need to see some leaves too.

Kevin
 
Sam Fel
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Kevin Elmore wrote:Sam,

The pods look like they might be from a Chilean Mesquite.  For positive ID you will probably need to see some leaves too.

Kevin


I was actually able to confirm that it came from a honey mesquite tree. I was also able to find some velvet mesquite pods in riverside. Along with some acorns!!
 
Mike Snyder
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Hello fellow Hi desert enthusiasts, decided it's time to join the forum.          I skipped thru this thread but will be rereading again great thread ,and info . We're near Victorville on with 3/4 acre + lot . we're using shade cloth for shade ,and windbreak . we are trying to grow pistachios ,mulberry ,apricot ,peaches ,apples almonds ,grapes ,fig , pomegranate and pear so far . some success some failures . watering deep 1 time a week seems to work really good here (lots of clay).We seem to be having more success after adding worms . i'm very interested in some bamboo along fence ,and mesquite ,moringa or anything that will grow and provide a benefit ...Mike
 
Mike Snyder
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When digging in clay we've found using a pressure washer works amazingly fast .use it to bore a hole then a breaker bar 5' long break it up shovel it out repeat .even caliche clay breaks up quick . with the PW I can dig a 3' deep x 3' wide hole in less than 2 hours by myself thru caliche with little effort .
 
Sam Fel
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Mike Snyder wrote:Hello fellow Hi desert enthusiasts, decided it's time to join the forum.          I skipped thru this thread but will be rereading again great thread ,and info . We're near Victorville on with 3/4 acre + lot . we're using shade cloth for shade ,and windbreak . we are trying to grow pistachios ,mulberry ,apricot ,peaches ,apples almonds ,grapes ,fig , pomegranate and pear so far . some success some failures . watering deep 1 time a week seems to work really good here (lots of clay).We seem to be having more success after adding worms . i'm very interested in some bamboo along fence ,and mesquite ,moringa or anything that will grow and provide a benefit ...Mike


If your looking for some bamboo let me know. I've been thinking of starting a nursery on my property to avoid going on the road trucking again. The bamboo is great for breaking up clay and also is an edible vegetable and it will also provide a privacy fence. Try growing some goji berries they are pretty resilient as mine have weathered sandstorms and extreme heat this year.

Some palo verde trees will also help give some filtered sunlight and essentially substitute as a living shade cloth.

I've been trying to post some pics and updates but seems my phone data been going to slow. 😢

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Eye see
 
Sam Fel
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Update: we having 5 days of wind advisory starting to Friday, here is my mesquite from 5 days ago..

Everything is starting to throw in some extra growth before they go dormant for winter.
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Mike Snyder
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Hey Sam , that fig is looking good . there is a big fig out by itself near here ,it looks really healthy . i need to try its fruit and try to clone it if its any good .
 
Jon Snow
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I was in Yucca Valley and came across a nice looking honey mesquite. Seed pods all over the ground. Ill send you some Sam. Will mesquite seeds germinate during winter or should I plant them in the spring?
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Sam Fel
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Jon Snow wrote: I was in Yucca Valley and came across a nice looking honey mesquite. Seed pods all over the ground. Ill send you some Sam. Will mesquite seeds germinate during winter or should I plant them in the spring?


Those were the same ones I was about to send you! Yea I'm still sprouting some as we speak just saw the cotyledon pop out if soil line on a few. I recommend you sprout them ASAP.
 
Sam Fel
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Pic updates
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Pear
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Mesquite seedling
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Oak acorn
 
Sam Fel
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Bamboo update: everything is doing great bamboo wise
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Jon Snow
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It's nice to see your progress. Your trees look good. As I write this I have about a dozen mesquite seeds soaking in water. I will plant them this weekend. I was told the tree from where I got the seeds is a honey mesquite. I think its a Chilean because the seeds taste chaulky and I didn't see any thorns on the tree. I'm no expert so I'm not 100% sure.
 
Sam Fel
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Mike Snyder wrote:Hey Sam , that fig is looking good . there is a big fig out by itself near here ,it looks really healthy . i need to try its fruit and try to clone it if its any good .[/quott

There were actually two praying mantis in the picture too! Not sure if anyone noticed them.
 
Kevin Franck
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Jon Snow wrote: I just bought a small cabin on 5 acres in Johnson Valley, not too far from Barstow. The high desert is AWESOME!!  I'm also looking to plant some native Mesquite trees. There is a nursery that sells plants and trees in Yucca Valley called Unique Garden Center. I have never been there (but will soon) all the locals say this place is the best.  Search for these helpful facebook groups: Joshua Tree Permaculture and Eden Regenerative Design. Here is a pic of my shack, I just bought it 5 months ago.


I love your vision there Jon of wanting to create something spectacular in such an isolated and challenging spot. I love deserts, but have lived over here in Sweden now for over 10 years now. People here freak when I mention missing the deserts southwest over there. I lived in Anza California for over 20+ years prior to moving here. I lived east of the town of Anza up on Table Mountain at the doorstep of Anza Borrego State Park. My brother still lives in Ranchita to the south in San Diego county just above Borrego Springs. I have written quite a lot about Anza Borrego desert and Imperial Valley. My last post was on my wishes for reclamation of a landscape that is basically a black canvas. The post was about a natural mechanism for rebuilding called Tardigrades. I mostly write about Mycorrhizae, bacteria, biological soil crusts and various native plants with deep rooting infrastructure, but these little guys have become recently more and more interesting to me.

      Tardigrades: Pioneers in Creating a New Earth       

Here is my dream black canvas landscape below or something close to it. This is Font's Point in the Anza Borrego Balands. I was once chastized by the Desert Protective Council who once posted a similar photo on their site when I made the comment, "Most people see a totally desolate worthless wasteland. But I see it as potential." The Desert Protective Council Administrator took offense as did some of their members. I wasn't talking about development, but rather enhancing the landscape again with native desert plants. They were still irritated. To each their religious ideological own I guess.




You mentioned planting Mesquites. I've written a lot about utilizing Mesquite as a windbreak plant component to large berms created as windbreaks. This would realistically biomimic a natural Mesquite Mound which are almost gone in that part of the world because of housing and country club development. The early Farmers and the Ag Extention Science Experts made a huge mistake in bringing over Middle eastern and North African Tamarisk trees to do this job. They suck far more water and have replaced most of the native riparian habitats there in the southwest. But my plans and blueprint ideas included building large permanant rock and soul berms with multiple native desert trees and plants like Mesquite (Velvet, Honey & Screwbean), Cat'sclaw Acacia, Foothill or even Blue Palo Verde, Desert Ironwood & Baja Fairyduster. Once established they would need little or even no watering (especially if located on Imperial Valley floors where water table is high).

      Lessons from a Mesquite Dune Project   

My other area of interest is deep pipe irrigation as opposed to drip irrigation.

     Deep Irrigation Methods for Deeper Rotting Infrastructure      

Hope some of this is helpful


 
Kevin Franck
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Sam Fel wrote:

There were actually two praying mantis in the picture too! Not sure if anyone noticed them.


I only saw a large blue-green one on the Bamboo

Are you going to actually plant those oak acorns ? You will definitely need all the help you can get with both Ecto & Endo Mycorrhizal fungi. Don't plant them without inoculating. A Goasis waterboxx would be perfect for the establishment process in developing straight downwards deep root system.
 
Kevin Franck
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Sam Fel wrote:  Picture updates


             
   


I would suggest planting directly into the soil where you wish the tree to be established permanantly from the start. I once did an experiment when i was in my late teens. I acquired some seed pods from Cat'sclaw Acacia from hiking in the Santa Rosa Mountains just above Palm springs. I did the old paper towel in the large jar trick with presoaked seeds inserted in between towel and glass at the top of the jar. Then I filled the bottom of the jar with 3 inches of water. The capillary action of the paper towle drew up moisture which in just a couple days triggered the seed germination of the Cat'sclaw Acacia. For some few weeks there was not leaf sprout, only a single taproot growth from one seed. At the third week a single stem with leaf emerged. So I decided it was time to plant on the mountainside above my parents property. What was fascinating about this taproot grwth was the fact that when it reached the bottom of this large tall jar, it merely kept growing and spiraling around the bottom several times. When I finally planted, I had to dig a hole that was almost a meter in depth. What all of this told me was that the blueprint instructions within the DNA of this Cat'sclaw Acacia was programmed to survive within a harsh hot dry desert environment. The programming cause the plant to put all it's resources into developing a very long deep taprooting system because that was the only way this plant would survive a life under those conditions.

I've since done other desert tree seed experiements with the same results. Very rapid germination and development equally as rapid with deep taproot infrastructure. Most of the native desert plants believe it or not actually germinate in the middle of summer during the monsoon rainy season. That doesn't mean they may not germinate if there are winter rains, but I've just never seen them like summertime monsoon rains a week later. If you do not have a Groasis Waterboxx Planting Cocoon, then simply deep soak the planting hole, refill it with soil, plant the seed, water again and mulch as you've done in the black pot container, then find some large flat rocks to place around where the plant will germinate. Roack are a perfect desert muclh which will not allow any water to escape. The seed itself will take surface water and move it downwards as the taproot moves deep as well. The seed drilling mechanism is very similar to mechanical human constructed drills for water or oil wells which also pump water down and spit it out ahead of the drill for easier soil penetration with less frictin. Of course the taproot will no doubt have other enzyme it uses along with the water for a disolving type of penetration. Mycorrhizal fungi do the same thing when mining for nutrients in solid rock particles.

Below is one of my more recent experiments when I brought back seed from the pea family from our visit to Tennerife in the Canary Islands a couple of years back. (Seed from Paloverde, Cat'sclaw and Mexican Red Bird of Paradise) All experienced same rapid germination and taproot growth. Container systems stunt that deep root infrastructure and set the plant back. Hope this makes sense.

 
Sam Fel
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Kevin Franck wrote:
Sam Fel wrote:  Picture updates


             
   


I would suggest planting directly into the soil where you wish the tree to be established permanantly from the start. I once did an experiment when i was in my late teens. I acquired some seed pods from Cat'sclaw Acacia from hiking in the Santa Rosa Mountains just above Palm springs. I did the old paper towel in the large jar trick with presoaked seeds inserted in between towel and glass at the top of the jar. Then I filled the bottom of the jar with 3 inches of water. The capillary action of the paper towle drew up moisture which in just a couple days triggered the seed germination of the Cat'sclaw Acacia. For some few weeks there was not leaf sprout, only a single taproot growth from one seed. At the third week a single stem with leaf emerged. So I decided it was time to plant on the mountainside above my parents property. What was fascinating about this taproot grwth was the fact that when it reached the bottom of this large tall jar, it merely kept growing and spiraling around the bottom several times. When I finally planted, I had to dig a hole that was almost a meter in depth. What all of this told me was that the blueprint instructions within the DNA of this Cat'sclaw Acacia was programmed to survive within a harsh hot dry desert environment. The programming cause the plant to put all it's resources into developing a very long deep taprooting system because that was the only way this plant would survive a life under those conditions.

I've since done other desert tree seed experiements with the same results. Very rapid germination and development equally as rapid with deep taproot infrastructure. Most of the native desert plants believe it or not actually germinate in the middle of summer during the monsoon rainy season. That doesn't mean they may not germinate if there are winter rains, but I've just never seen them like summertime monsoon rains a week later. If you do not have a Groasis Waterboxx Planting Cocoon, then simply deep soak the planting hole, refill it with soil, plant the seed, water again and mulch as you've done in the black pot container, then find some large flat rocks to place around where the plant will germinate. Roack are a perfect desert muclh which will not allow any water to escape. The seed itself will take surface water and move it downwards as the taproot moves deep as well. The seed drilling mechanism is very similar to mechanical human constructed drills for water or oil wells which also pump water down and spit it out ahead of the drill for easier soil penetration with less frictin. Of course the taproot will no doubt have other enzyme it uses along with the water for a disolving type of penetration. Mycorrhizal fungi do the same thing when mining for nutrients in solid rock particles.

Below is one of my more recent experiments when I brought back seed from the pea family from our visit to Tennerife in the Canary Islands a couple of years back. (Seed from Paloverde, Cat'sclaw and Mexican Red Bird of Paradise) All experienced same rapid germination and taproot growth. Container systems stunt that deep root infrastructure and set the plant back. Hope this makes sense.



Wow! Thank you for your post and contribution. I completely agree with you about everything you said! It all was very logical and made sense! I would like to direct sow my trees however I'm currently battling with the critters on the area. Rabbits are very hungry and seems even mice are eating the mesquite seedlings which were to far away for my cats to protect. It makes send that if your direct sow a plant or tree it will have more time to sink it taproot down into the water column. I plan on direct sowing more trees next year, this year was more of acquiring seed and planing. I'm planning on buying some catclaw acacias seeds eventually I would like to construct a bow out of it like my ancestors did before in the past.
 
Jon Snow
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My groasis waterbox just arrived in the mail a few days ago! Can't wait to use it. I definitely need it since I don't live in the high desert. I'm only there a few weekends a month. I'm also thinking of making something similar to a groasis waterboxx with 5 gallon buckets. The groasis waterboxx are pretty expensive. I paid close to $60 for one shipped to L.A. I'll keep you guys posted.
 
Kevin Franck
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Jon Snow wrote:My groasis waterbox just arrived in the mail a few days ago! Can't wait to use it. I definitely need it since I don't live in the high desert. I'm only there a few weekends a month. I'm also thinking of making something similar to a groasis waterboxx with 5 gallon buckets. The groasis waterboxx are pretty expensive. I paid close to $60 for one shipped to L.A. I'll keep you guys posted.


I'm in ongoing contact with Groasis over here in Europe. I'm in Sweden and they are in Nederlands. I recently put them together with a friend here(who is also American) who has a process of turning tree lignin into a type of long lasting plastic. To me the original price for the box was expernse, but they have two manufacturing contracts with companies in South America right now. Like the USA, it's just too expensive to make cheap things here in E.U. because of high minimum wage requirement, plus all those socialist welfare entitlements. Not to mention here in Sweden sales tax is 25%. Mexico is purchasing one million of the Groasis boxxes. The biodegradable ones are the cheapest to purchase. You definitely have to provide a wire mesh around the plants to prevent herbivore browsing. Hope it works well for you.

The Nederlands people have already done much experimentation with hundreds of waterboxxes in Yucca Valley and Coachella Valley restoration sites with Joshua trees and other plants like Mesquites, etc.
 
kevin stewart
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Sam

In the ground is nice but how are you going to protect those seeds? Individual wire cages?
I considered long tubes of wire but then the trees will be too close together.

This trip I have planted thirty siberian elm in a half circle around my future house location.
For the moment they are just sticks. I expect to see growth on march/april and then I will have to cough up the money for welded wire fencing to circle each one.
In june each one will need it's own shade cloth cover.
The picture is of a siberian elm (so I've been told) at an abandoned homestead. At least, in five years no one has seen the owner...
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Sam Fel
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kevin stewart wrote:Sam

In the ground is nice but how are you going to protect those seeds? Individual wire cages?
I considered long tubes of wire but then the trees will be too close together.

This trip I have planted thirty siberian elm in a half circle around my future house location.
For the moment they are just sticks. I expect to see growth on march/april and then I will have to cough up the money for welded wire fencing to circle each one.
In june each one will need it's own shade cloth cover.
The picture is of a siberian elm (so I've been told) at an abandoned homestead. At least, in five years no one has seen the owner...


I'm planning on planting close to my camp where the cats can protect them. I also think I'm gonna use 2 liter bottles to protect them while they are young. Seems the red tail hawk that moved in has been helping
 
Wayne Mackenzie
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greening the desert
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You might want to try some Jujube trees. You could grow rootstock from seed (cheap) & graft later on.
 
Jon Snow
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Here's a picture of the bottle tree I planted. I made these boxes to protect the tree from the killer jackrabbits that eat anything in sight and to give some protection from the sun.
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Jon Snow
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Here are more pictures of the wood boxes I made. The one in the bottom is upside down. I bury the legs so the wind wont move it.
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Tyler Ludens
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That box is a great idea!
 
Bart Wallace
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Interesting topic and I do not have the water issues you all have. We had a dry year this year and still received over 40 inches of rain but did have two months of no rain. The reason I am commenting and asking here is that I am looking to go towards more drought hardy plants. I have heard that pomegranates are very drought hardy. Would they work in the desert?
 
Bart Wallace
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How much rain is everyone averaging in the desert?
 
Tracy Wandling
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Jon Snow; Thank you for a great idea! Another thing to build with scrap wood, and I can envision putting some wire fencing or chicken wire around the top to protect from deer. Brilliant, thank you!
 
Erwin Decoene
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I'm impressed with your attempts at permaculture in such conditions. Salination is probably your biggest longterm problem ?


I have no experience whatever but i'm aware of efforts elsewhere you may not have encountered yet.


Maybe this might be of use to you.

The fysical geography department of the university of Leuven is part of a program to prevent erosion and harvest water in Ethiopia. They and their African partners have al kinds of publications - from heavy academic texts down to information an illiterate african farmer can use. http://www.kuleuven.be/ci/24/cki24-ethiopia.html ; https://lirias.kuleuven.be/handle/123456789/368684 The links lead to a number of publications that you can acces. Just google any authors name that comes up as you go.

One of the conclusions you can extrapolate upon is that the captured sediment runof behind smal scale dams (similar to swales) is more fertile than the remaining eroded land. So you could build water (and sediment) capture swales/dams and either harvest the soil accumulating or you can move you swale once you have decent soil depth.

Another is that managing the fertility of your land should be done in a holistic and integrated way.

You may also find publications about China's green wall to be of intrest.

Succes






 
Pat Banttari
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books food preservation greening the desert
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You have some very good ideas to pass along when gardening in the dry lands of the desert. I live in the High Desert also, about 40 miles south of you at about 3600' elevation. I've been gardening here for the last 14 years and it's quite a challenge with the high, dry winds, water issues, nutrient depleted soils that have to be constantly built up for what we now grow here, and the under and above ground critters killing plants and trees.This past year I've tried to outsmart the hungry critters.

So I now plant in large pots! Continuously feeding the soil is a must to build up the good bacteria, fungi and grow a large earthworm population that can eat through the Caliche. And it all fertilizes the ground. I figure if you pull up a shovel-full of soil and its loaded with earthworms, you've got good soil. I use kitchen waste, weeds that have not gone to seed and compost where I will grow next.

It's interesting to remember that the desert used to be barren of homes. The main plants were the California Juniper, Yucca and Joshua trees and native wildflowers that have survived in this rugged landscape. Now we build homes, people want to garden and grow things so the landscape and soils have to be changed.

One of the most valuable trees I grow, although still small about 3' tall and in a pot, is the Moringa tree. It grows mostly in third world countries and is making its way in America. The seeds are hard to grow.  Seedlings grow better when starting off.
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/08/24/moringa-tree-uses.aspx
http://www.treesforlife.org/our-work/our-initiatives/moringa
http://www.moringamatters.com/how_to_eat_moringa_leaves.html

It has only been introduced in the U.S. recently but doing much research, it is one I treasure. It's leaves are nutrient rich. It's an awesome tree.

I try to only grow plants and trees that offer food, flowers, herbs for cooking and for good health and healing. And for pollinators. Shade trees are also planted.
It takes time to build good soil and I grow organically, no digging or cultivating the soil. And only grow heirloom seeds and plants then save the seeds. I water deeply about once a week during Sumer, nothing at all in Winter, and sparsely inthe Fall when needed.

Any book written by ruth stout - if you can find one, out of print are priceless.
Also "One Straw Revolution" or "Sowing Seeds in the Desert" by Masanobu Fukuoka are amazing books with excellent gardening wisdom.

http://www.onestrawrevolution.net/One_Straw_Revolution/One-Straw_Revolution.html
 
Pat Banttari
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Location: High Desert, Ca
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Bart Wallace wrote:Interesting topic and I do not have the water issues you all have. We had a dry year this year and still received over 40 inches of rain but did have two months of no rain. The reason I am commenting and asking here is that I am looking to go towards more drought hardy plants. I have heard that pomegranates are very drought hardy. Would they work in the desert?


Pomegranates grow very well in the desert. Last year I saved the seeds from the one and only small pom. I have growing. I look forward to growing more pom plants sprouting this year.
 
Sam Fel
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Sorry for such a long gap between updating everyone in the project! I watered my plants for the first time since early December today and everything seems to be doing great! The Swales are green with wild grass, dandelions, and other weeds but I'm loving how green it looking! Wind has been pretty bad but most the plants seems to be doing well thanks to this natural ground cover that has sprung up. It's warmer up enough that I was able to direct sow some carob, mesquite and palo verde trees that have sprouted. Also bamboo has been doing great starting g it's spring shoots. The goji berries are very resilent plants and are growing vigorously they had an aphid problem but there seriously must've been over 100 ladybugs visiting it thru out the day and seems they are almost done with the clean-up.( got some good pics of them mating on the leaf) grapes just starting breaking their leaf buds and greening up as of yesterday along with the blackberries and blueberries. Seems not quite warm enough to sprout moringa yet. As it has dropped to 34 degrees once within the last week.
My figs are the only ones that haven't woken up from their winter hibernation.. Also my oaks begin to sprout and show leaves above the ground! I know they are going to grow slow but I'm still excited they are growing! First time germinating acorns and it worked! Now just gotta do that times 100000! Lol
 
Pat Banttari
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....."The Swales are green with wild grass, dandelions, and other weeds but I'm loving how green it looking!...."

Whether you know it or not you have one of the most valuable "medicine and food" growing right in your garden!!
Most people "spray" these powerful foods out of their garden.....
...Dandelions are one of the most healthful "weeds" you can have in your garden...the whole plant...from roots, to leaves..to the flowers.
Sadly in this wasteful society, we've made everything that is good to be bad, and everything that is bad to be good! That's the way of "mankind".
The Almighty has provided us with such great abundance of "green plants" as healing herbs that are very powerful healers for our bodies.
Dandelion is one of the greatest! And in the middle of Winter its at it's most nutritious.
Never underestimate our "weeds"...most can be the best medicine and very few to no side effects. Better than "manmade" drugs with all the harmful  side effects any day, in my book!!
There is no drug out there today that heals, only masks the symptoms.

https://www.mountainroseherbs.com/products/dandelion-root/profile
http://www.herballegacy.com/Chhabra_Medicinal.html
https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/herbs-and-spices/health-benefits-of-dandelion.html
http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/dandelion

There is much information on youtube.com. Here's a great one -
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrbowas5z6g

I make infusions out of my herbs - Comfrey, Dandelion, Horsetail Grass, Linden blossoms...and many more.
1 ounce of herbs to one quart of boiling water in a quart  canning jar. Cover with both lids and let sit overnight. It has an earthy taste but the healthful benefits
outweigh the taste. People make Dandelion wine - another business, perhaps?? And use the greens in a delicious salad.
I am literally growing my own medicine right in my garden. I just went outside tnis AM to pick some Comfrey leaves to put on my wrists to help
with the arthritic pain of years of pruning, digging, etc.

Once you learn the many great health benefits of herbs, you may want to start a great medicine garden.
I am saving the dried branches of trees that I've had to cut down and weaving the branches together with wire to make a pretty creative fence around my "medicine" garden.

Genesis 1:29 "Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that
has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food.
30 And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground
—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.” And it was so."

 
Sam Fel
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Omg! That's exactly what I was telling my dad when he wanted to pull out the dandelions even dogs dig them up to eat their roots.. And I'm not sure but I'm pretty sure the other "weed" that is growing is pursulane
 
Pat Banttari
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https://survivalblog.com//?s=Become+Your+Own+Herbal+Doctor
https://survivalblog.com//?s=herbal+medicinbes

Sam - Here's a few really great articles on making and using herbal medicines. When we live "far out", sometimes in the boonies, we, at least I do
don't want to have to run to a doctor for every little ailment. Can't remember when I've had even a cold, flu or anything else.

I make herbal infusions and that really helps to keep me healthy.

Here's some pictures of purslane. Identifying the right plant is very, very important when we have them growing on our property as some
"look-alikes" can be poisonous. There is also pictures of the poisonous "look-alike" plant on this same site.
http://www.ediblewildfood.com/purslane.aspx

It's a whole new and exciting "ball-game" when we grow our own medicine right in our gardens, especially when they just grow up around us without
planting them. Free medicine!!!
 
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