Troy Santos

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since Feb 14, 2013
Southern Thailand
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Recent posts by Troy Santos

Seems to me Geoff Lawton featured this too Urban Agroecoloy: 6,000 lbs of food on 1/10th acre - Urban Homestead - Urban Permaculture  


Travis ... your story is encouraging and inspiring. I wish you well
9 months ago

Sam White wrote:Here's a study done by the Ecological Land Cooperative focusing upon the economic viability of smallholdings (10 acres or less). UK based study but you might find it interesting.


It's available here as a PDF
library.uniteddiversity.coop/Food/Small_is_Successful-Creating_Sustainable_Livelihoods_on_10_Acres_or_Less.pdf
9 months ago

Just thought ... I wonder if eucalyptus is allelopathic (i.e. hinders the growth of other vegetation). If so, you might want to avoid using it in hugel beds anyway. I hope you post back here in the future about your hugelkultur beds
1 year ago

You're in Udon ... I'm in Hat Yai You get a decent cold spell that gets to about zero celcius, and long dry hot season. I think it's a super cool idea to bury all that stuff. I suppose I'd mix it up first, but if you bury the stuff separately, boy, make sure you know what is where, and to some extent, plant the same things in the various parts, then note plant characteristics and vigor & health. One word of caution ... I think the sugar cane bagass will attract tons and tons of ants! But maybe I'm wrong. Regarding the rice husks, realize that they take a long time to break down, even under soil, and many people in the colder climates would say that's great, except that unless they're already somewhat decomposed, I'll bechya their decomposing agents'll (bacteria and fungi?) drag nitrogen out of the soil in order to break them down. If there are cows around who like to poop, be sure there's a person nearby who is happy to scoop Also regarding the rice husks, you realize that some people say that burying biochar (in your case, the charred rice husks) in the soil, in an HC bed is a great idea. Others are not so sure. Just gotta try it out on your own

I don't have any experience trying what you're gonna try, and don't know who has but I'm interested to follow this project

One more thing: if you're not so far from a city, where people have trees, or where there is a tree cutting service ... hit them up

1 year ago

For about the first 20 minutes of the 2nd video (37 minutes total), Wade and the lecture attendees talk about their experiences with Hugelkultur. So it is apparent that more than a few people have used the method in Hawaii. After the hugelkultur bit they talk about sheet mulch beds. Good talk
2 years ago

Thanks Andrew. I like your idea to put wood in banana circles. I'll watch Wade's videos.
2 years ago

Thanks for this. I really appreciate creativity and innovativeness based on local conditions
2 years ago

I'd love to get some updates on these tropical hugel beds. I'm in Thailand doing urban agriculture research. I suggested hugel beds to the participants in my research. Only one guy took up the idea and his hasn't worked out so well. I keep thinking I didn't put on enough soil. Just starting to write my thesis, so I'm still super interested to learn more about hugel in the tropics. If anyone knows of research that I can cite in my thesis, please tell. I've seen a couple of things about how wood decomposes under soil, but nothing about hugel specifically, and for sure nothing in the tropics. I realize that hugel beds aren't especially suited to urban areas, but they are very doable on a small piece of land as well as on a large piece of land. Even putting wood in a plastic tote or styrofoam box and covering it with soil works!
2 years ago

Thanks guys. K Putnam, I listened to the podcast, and I agree, the guy has some interesting things to say, quite a lot contradicting some core things that Elaine Ingham and others insist on. I always get interested when someone tears down something that I've come to take as truth. But then, jeez ...! Gets just a tiny bit exasperating. A couple of things that he is in accord with is amount of synthetic fertilizers - amount. Don't use a lot! When he says he supports using synthetic fertilizers in a vegetable garden ... a flag goes up for me right away. But I agree with him in principle, don't be dogmatic about organic (or anything for that matter).

RedHawk ... I'll look at those journals you mentioned. Thanks much


2 years ago

Question first:
Anyone have any idea where I might find published or unpublished research on the microbial life of fill dirt?!

Explanation second:
I'm doing a master's degree in Thailand regarding urban agriculture. I've met many people who have fill dirt in their gardens, and many people in my research complain about soil problems and so-called pests. I understand that there are people (Elaine Ingham, and others) who say that the missing ingredient in "dirt" is the microbial life. I understand that fill dirt is really just "dirt" (lacking the microbial life) but I haven't yet found any academic research to back this up.

Now, I don't expect that anyone'll come up with a fistful of recent peer-reviewed journal articles on just this topic (LOL) but if anyone has any ideas where I can look, please tell because I'd really appreciate it. I've looked in two online data bases (Science Direct and Springer) but didn't come up with anything. My advisors can't help with this.

Thanks a ton
2 years ago