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Living Fence ideas?

 
Ben Zukisian
Posts: 84
Location: Redwood Country, Zone 9, 60" rain/yr,
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I have several areas where I would like to establish living fences, primarily to obscure road/neighbor views but also for all the other benefits one might enjoy like potentially keeping livestock and edibles. My neighbors have logged their 2nd growth in the past 3yrs to my dismay and on top of it exacerbating flooding it is just depressing to look at. I have been able to collect a lot of the wood for hugels and have one in the process along my driveway to divert flood water away from my house using the wood from trees across the driveway which were growing into power lines 20ft up. Unfortunately this bed along the driveway is essentially on top of the the septic tank and drainfield though, so I have not been growing edibles and am hesitant about trees that may damage the tank etc. Its in nearly full sun and in my climate I can grow almost anything. The soil below the hugels is acidic clay. Anyone have species recommendations for fast growing, useful and pretty plants for this purpose? How much should I worry about smaller fruit or nut trees like hazelnut or apple being close to the septic? A rose hedge is my first thought here.

In the back in my chicken yard I have another living fence of plums and apple trees that has fallen into poor health I'd like to reinvigorate and get huckleberries, hazelnut, grapes and kiwis going along with the trees, I just have to sequester the birds away from this spot to get them established.
 
John Polk
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Location: Currently in Lake Stevens, WA. Home in Spokane
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A rose hedge is my first thought here.

Yeah.  Rosa rugosa should do well in acidic soils, and a maritime setting.
They will provide buckets of huge rose hips, and great beauty when in flower.

Traditional living fences have provided a variety of edibles, free for the picking.
Rosa-rugosa-alba.PNG
[Thumbnail for Rosa-rugosa-alba.PNG]
 
Janne Lassila
Posts: 22
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Thought this might not affect you...but Rosa rugosa has done great damage in Finland. Yes it is nice looking rose, with glorious flowers, and it withstands and tolerates everything. But in maritime setting it also spreads very agressively via water, and here it has taken over countless beaches. The hip and seeds float and germinate readily.
https://luomus.digitarium.fi/MM.51729/MX.38815_Rosa_rugosa_TerhiRyttari_large.jpg

But since you don't live here, conditions may vary
 
Ben Zukisian
Posts: 84
Location: Redwood Country, Zone 9, 60" rain/yr,
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dog duck hugelkultur
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Thanks Janne and John, we have several native roses (i.e. Nootka) around here that are probably prime for taking cuttings right now. Any thoughts on the edibility and roots damage close to a septic system/field? Apparently around here in Caltucky (Del Norte-Humbold counties had no building code until 1973 and after that one person in the field office) everyone including the prior owner of this house and all my neighbours just pay off a plumber to sign off on inspections/pumping when in reality the systems just flood and flush out during rain events. The yokels around here think its just convenient because their septic tanks never fill up and disregard the rivers of shit. My feeling on this is that I am mainly worried about chemicals in the system than the biology, as I would like to be doing composting toilets anyhow and if I could design the down stream garden along my driveway as filtration/nutrient absorption device that would be great. However it seems tree roots cracking the tanks would still be bad, and I know grapes, berries and annuals could reflect the nightwater flavor.
 
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