Wow, awesome, Mary. Do those locust varieties grow wild in your area, or are they naturalized, or did you import them from the U.S.. Do they spread rapidly by seed/birds? I loved driving through and camping on Manitoulin Island on a trip from Toronto to Terrace B.C., my hometown. Would it be possible to send me some seed of those locust varieties since you are Canadian?
I use mainly black locust and some caragana and honey locust,
I'm thinking that I might be able to get away with eleagnus species, but I don't like their often invasive spreading nature. I don't want my farm to be the place where Russian olive got established in the valley and became the bane of every cattle farmer, or something. I read that goumi is not terribly invasive. Any comments on that or on other possible eleagnus species? --- > I'm not sure, but zone three has it's limits in that species, I think. Probably only a few varieties; but I'm not sure. There is a shrub called wolf willow, or silver willow, or silver berry, Elaeagnus commutata that grows near this valley in Jasper Park (might grow in this valley too, but I haven't seen it), [at least I'm pretty sure I saw it there in Jasper] and produces a very nutritious fruit that is palatable when ripe. The bark was used traditionally for making cordage, and textiles. I'm into that for sure. It is also reputed to boost orchard crops by 10% ! Woot Woot. :) At least that one is local so that I would not be pointed out as THAT guy, who introduced it. I read that sea buckthorn has become a problem in part of Alberta, which is my neighboring province. I should keep in mind that Alberta has a much higher % of disturbed land that would be easily colonized by a heavy producing N fixer. This valley has disturbed land in the form of some logging activity, as well as ploughed, or disked hay fields where I think it might be a problem.
Other plants to try would be the eleagnus species which include several edible ones,
Yes, me too. I've got alfalfa, red and white clover, wild peas, and vetch growing in the meadow already. I also have a substantial amount of red clover seed which I plan to spread when I break ground on the swales. Lupines are another plant that I plan to gather seed from this year. I have a friend with a yard full of it, and I have one huge plant that I started from seed a few years ago, and it is ripening a big load of pods right now.
My preference would be to interplant with both woody and herbaceous legumes.
I wonder if goumi could be planted in a large pot and brought in for a few seasons of winters, and then grafted onto another eleagnus like silverberry/wolfberry that is hardier. I did see online that some people saying that goumi is hardy to -25F, so it might be able to handle zone 3 or 4. I might be able to microclimate up a few zones or at least one in a hugulkulture sun scoop with a pond nearby on the south side of my greenhouse or house. I checked out JL Hudson. Great stuff. I was unfamiliar with the plant wild blue indigo until you mentioned it. I looked it up. Seems like a gooder!
Goumi, unfortunately, won't grow this far north.
The invasiveness of russian and autumn olive is generally highly exaggerated.
That's my general understanding with most invasives, but I still use caution.
When humans keep disturbing the land with mowing road sides, plowing, over grazing, spraying herbicides, construction/expansion of buildings,etc, it freezes natural succession at the state where eleagnus and other pioneers are needed to heal things, so they step up to do their job.
Yes, they are essentially as short term compost tree, having a relatively short life span and producing a lot of soil building materials above and below the ground. I was thinking of coppicing or pollarding the ones that I was going to keep around. These practices, which promote new growth, keep the trees in a youthful stage, and thus can last a lot longer.
One caution is that alder easily fall down, so plan into the future as such..
Perhaps I will wait until the spring, or do a late fall job.
If the leaves are already budding, transplant success rate is low..
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