Jason Kootenai

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since Apr 02, 2012
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Recent posts by Jason Kootenai

In: The Holistic Orchard: Tree Fruits and Berries the Biological Way. Michael Phillips references cedar chips disrupting the preferred mycelium relationship for fruit trees. One may deduce the allelopathy of Cedar would do the same thing in soil. Any thoughts on this?
5 years ago
Great information and pictures. I am curious about your swale building process. Looks like you have a two bottom plow? Would be excited to see an example of the moldboard plow and what it does. I have seen Swales dug with the FEL but that looks tedious in comparison. Keep up the great work.
5 years ago
Welcome Grant, your topic is timely for my situation. I have begun talks with my local NRCS to look at options for approximately 8 acres of my land in latitude 47 N. Idaho. The land in question is hydric soil bordering on wetlands that has been used for hay and horse pasture. It is slowly reverting back to a wetlands nature of native Cottonwood, Spirea, Lupine, Alder, Willow. My goals for the land are largely influenced by Holzer, Lawton, Falk. I would like to see the land converted to swales, hugelkultur, humus retention, and wildlife food plots. Furthermore, my hope is that the swales/Hugelkultur can provide dry enough soil for perennial and annual food production. The NRCS seems receptive to a potential cost-sharing partnership in these goals. But has concerns about soil disturbance with swales.
Do you have any input as I negotiate and partner with my local agency?
5 years ago
Thanks Al, that's the kind of information for which I search. The land is designated wetland by state; it is not designated wetland by federal. Grey area. I will continue to ask more questions before I engage. But would like to know all I can.
5 years ago
Hi Tim and Gang,

I have a large pasture above a creek. The pasture is primarily water logged or snow covered until July-October. My goals for the acreage are to be able to slowly move into a hugelbed, food forest type of environment for several of the acres. This would necessitate the diversion and channeling of some of the surface runoff into a holding pond. I have spoken to the Soil Conservation Service and he suggested a WRP (wetlands restoration project) could be established and there could also be some cost sharing to undertake the project. I was forthright in sharing my goals for the land and stated I didn't want to "shake hands with the devil" and establish an agreement that would lock me into a commitment with a federal or state agency contrary to those goals. He stated he didn't see the goals as mutually exclusive. My question: Has anyone partnered with the SCS or any gov't agency and had either a beneficial or negative experience? I would like to be prepared before I research further.
5 years ago
Just speculation here: Cedar is anti-fungal and anti-microbial. Wouldn't it then serve to be counter productive to introduce a species that would hinder soil health. Agreed, it may slow down and budget decomposition. But, I am not sure that is the point. I don't believe HK beds have an expiration date. Thoughts?
6 years ago
This is an interesting idea. I have a couple of concerns for the greenhouse longevity. You mention your North wall benefiting from the infiltration of water and thusly providing the sponge phenomena for which we all strive in hugelkultur. The inherent problem is then the inability to protect your structural posts from becoming part of that sponge and seeing your greenhouse slowly fail. Clearly, one would want to avoid pressure treated posts, or utility poles; this leaves Cedar, Black Locust, Bamboo(?). If you were to use those materials, I would suggest following Mike Oehler's advice and use plastic bags and char to protect the subterranean sections. The overall contradiction in design is, you are wanting some wood to actively rot and become a sponge; but, you are wanting the structural posts to be impervious. Perhaps you have access to metal lightposts?
6 years ago
Hi Armin,

I recently had the Soil Conservation Service come to look at partnering in cost share and wetland restoration projects for my 12 acres in Sandpoint. I asked if a map with 2' contour intervals was available and without blinking, he said he would order one. You may call SCS and ask some questions.
6 years ago
IF you would be able to:
travel to the site in Montana: YES
have the funds to pay a workshop fee: YES, but I am a cheap bastard.
be able to take time off work: Probably

we want to hear from you in this thread.

So, IF you fit the three criteria above, please reply and include:
(a) how many podcasts you've listened to:
15-20
(b) whether you would be willing to camp in a tent:
Sure
(c) how many days works for you - 2-3 day, 5-7 days:
3-5 days
(d) which earth works are most interesting: pond, creek restoration, berms, hugelkultur:
Ponds, Berms, Swales, and all the Holzerfying we DIDN'T get to do in Bozeman.
6 years ago