Ariel Leger

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since Feb 05, 2013
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Recent posts by Ariel Leger

I have heard that natural plasters with finely ground bio-char help inhibit the growth of mould and fungi. worth looking into for a carbon sequestering, mould inhibiting, low cost, biodegradable option.
4 years ago
Sounds like you have a good year ahead of you! I'll send some pictures of the hugel bed I build for funsies
I agree about the digging in of the hugel beds. It is just too mesic out here and as I too am one of smaller stature, I don't want to have to reach too far or walk all over the hugel to get at the plants. I was planning on digging in about a half meter or so and then mounding wood (fresh cherry, apple and pear as well as dry rotted douglas fir and misc. fruit wood) until it was waist high. then cover with dirt. I don't think I'll make it much more than 1.5 meters wide for easy double reachability. I was also considering burying some logs in vertically to make a sort of retaining wall for a hugel-raised bed.
anyhow I can only imagine how difficul this is to picture so I will post pictures once it is built.
4 years ago
I live just north of the border in the Okanagan (yea it's got an 'a' up here) but at a much lower elevation (closer to 400'). I got an amazing book for plant ID called "Plants of Southern Interior British Colombia" by Roberta Parish, Ray Coupe, and Dennis Lloyd. Its kick ass. If you don't already have it, it may help you ID those grasses and such.

traditional ground covers are had out here because it's so damn dry. If you aren't irrigating, and are trying to establish a ground cover out in the open, it's hella tough. Depending on what kind of soil conditions you are looking to create with this ground cover, you might be able to get some woodier dryland plants going without too much trouble (think sagebrush, lavender, etc). If you chop n' drop those you can get a really nice fungal duff going for a future orchard.

how are those hugel beds doing btw? I'm putting a few in this year. seems like a really good way to conserve water in this climate.

Cheers!
4 years ago
I was thinking of trying Shiitakes and oysters. Shiitake because I have read that they grow well on dense wood and oysters because they are such an aggressive growing mushroom.
Anyone have any other suggestions for mushrooms that would grow well on fruit wood (namely apple and cherry)?
I have noticed that mycelium tends to run just under the bark of decomposing wood. Apple tends to have thin bark and I was thinking that wrapping the logs with a layer of corrugated cardboard might help mimic thicker bark. Ima give it a try and see what gives.
4 years ago
I am living in close proximity to fruit orchards and have access to all wood from the hard cuts that were made this winter.
the logs were 2 months ago and have been laying in the orchard since.
they are oddly shaped but many are 30-40 cm in diameter and 40 cm + in length.
Most of it is Apple wood with some cherry. I have seen turkey tail (trametes versicolor) growing on both trees.
I am looking for a good candidate for innoculating these logs. What Species would folks recommend for Apple and Cherry wood? Do you think that these logs have been sitting for too long to innoculate?
Thanks,
Ariel
4 years ago
Hi Jen,

Dave has given some good advice here, kudos Dave, and I wish you the luck of finding an arborist with such a kind and permaculture oriented heart near you. Falling trees in an Urban area in the US is a veritable shitstorm of liability issues... It is worth doing the research and checking with the companies in your area but I think you may be hard pressed to find someone who will pay you for the trees. Timber companies will probably be uninterested in such a small cut and most arborists will charge to cut down trees in an Urban area even if you let them keep the wood as dealing with the fallen trees is seen an added expense, not as potential profit.

From the picture, it looks as if the trees could be dropped onto the open lawn behind them...If this is the case, I'd go with the DIY option. Start in your community zone 1 and work outwards to see if you can find someone who has the ability to drop these trees safely. If they can be processed, stored and seasoned on site to be sold next year as processed ready to use timber you may be able to obtain a yield from these trees that way.

If you do not have folks in your network to help you process the lumber, you may be hard pressed to find someone to cut these trees without YOU having to pay THEM for their trouble. In this case, I would let them grow. They are beautiful Oak trees and if you or someone in your community does not have need for the lumber let them stand! they are doing far more good as living standing trees than as cut lumber. I think that you may be able to get better yields out of these trees if you let them live. I wont go into too much detail about the various uses of a living oak tree in this thread as it is specifically about woodworking and harvesting urban lumber but it might be worth doing some research into other ways of obtaining yields from these oaks without cutting them down for lumber. (I can think of quite a few and if you want some ideas feel free to message me about them )
4 years ago
Question for David:
How do you personally use small odd cuts of wood in your construction? How have you seen others put odd, gnarled and or small cuts to the best possible use?
I have used them for heating, hugelkulture, biochar and to build raised beds/terraces on the steep hillsides of the Okanagan but none of these could really be classified as construction.
What I am really trying to get as is if you have come across a way to upcycle the small cuts before they are put to the above mentioned uses (hugelkulture, biochar, etc).
Thank you!
4 years ago
Thinking on closing some loops in you system:
seems heating and feeding the fish are both open here. The system provides for neither of these needs without constant addition from energy outside the system. If you live in a suburban area you could most probably get a hold of enough food waste to feed a large worm bin or black soldier fly system which could provide some great protein for the fish. There are also many high protein plants that Catfish love that you might be able to grow in the low light conditions of your raised bed gardens in the summer or find some space for in your hoop house during the winter. I don't know much about what catfish eat in their natural environment but assume that they would like high protein plants. They might even like having some plants growing in a raft in their tank. I know that catfish like to play amongst the roots of aquatic plants in the wild.
where does the power to keep the water flowing come from?
This might be a little more complicated if you don't have the option of using solar power. Wind is kinda expensive to install and depending on your area might not be practical. whatever you choose, It is a good idea to have a back up power source for your system in case the grid goes down for a substantial amount of time. nice to have a back up plan..
Looks like you have a beautiful system going here! It'll be wonderful to have fresh veggies all through the winter that don't come from califorina...
5 years ago
Hi Soni,
I'd love to talk about your project and read your write up. I am a permaculture designer and have been practicing mostly in urban and peri-urban environments around the US and Canada. Living mostly in intentional communtities, group houses, squats and other such anarcho minded spaces. I am looking at bringing together a bunch of folks together in a similar anarcho-farm/urban homestead way and would love to bounce ideas off of you and talk about the various similar projects that have been and are still around, what works and what doesn't etc.
hit me up at growrevgrow (at) riseup (dot) net
5 years ago
I want to get some feedback from the Permie community about the cost of folks who have a PDC certification, attending a 2nd, 3rd, 4th etc PDC.

I thought that permaculture etiquette allowed for folks who have already take a PDC to attend subsequent ones for free. This discounting of course the costs of housing/food if the even is being catered or if housing is being provided for those attending.

What say you permies? especially interested in hearing from PDC facilitators.
5 years ago