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Soil, natural mounds and rain

 
Della Miller
Posts: 7
Location: Hernando, MS Zone 7b clay soil
fish food preservation hugelkultur
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Hello!
First time here. Please allow me to list the basics
- 59 inches of rain a year
- 13 acres of slightly hilly land
-CLAY soil 
-long growing season (yay)

I would like to fill the natural low laying valleys of my land with hugle.  I am concerned about the clay soil but read that I need to stand my wood chunks on their end.
We plan to add compost, chicken manure, horse manure and some fish to help with decomposition and nutrients. Advice?

How well will my hugle work in this area with a lot of rain?

I have a lake, 5 acres. On the edges of the lake to build it out they created deep valleys between the lake wall and the ground of the property. Seems to me I could back fill it with logs, and debris layer with soil ect and use the lake wall and the opposite tree line to act as a holding structure.

Thoughts?
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Posts: 1822
Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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MY first big concern is the mention of "Lake Wall", that sounds more like a Dam to me.
Earth dams fail a lot of times because of the wrong sort of things happening over time.
Tree roots will actually destroy the holding ability of earth dams, there is one being redone right now in a housing development because of tree roots.

If you do as you mentioned, you could actually create a dam failure, from clay saturation, that probably would not be good for you. 5 acres of water is a lot of water.

With that much rainfall, have you addressed the control of water yet?
That would be the first thing to do. Hugels would come later so they were placed correctly.

Once a hugel is properly built it will settle from the top down, the wood will slowly become saturated with water (this happens faster if the wood is already decaying).
A good hugel has lots of water holding ability, enough that clay would stay saturated for weeks or even months after it became saturated.

I am just concerned for your land. I'm sure you can use hugels as you want to but you might need to rethink their location and it is better to do that before you build one and find out it created issues you didn't expect or want.

If you could post a couple of photos, it would be much easier for us to give you pertinent information.

Redhawk
 
Della Miller
Posts: 7
Location: Hernando, MS Zone 7b clay soil
fish food preservation hugelkultur
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Thank you very much for your reply.  I am doing alot of thinking about proper placement.  What  you said has definitely helped me identify some important areas. 
 
Bryant RedHawk
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Location: Vilonia, Arkansas - Zone 7B/8A stoney, sandy loam soil pH 6.5
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If you come upon any other questions, please let me know. I'll help all I can.
 
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