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Clay Rogers

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since Jan 20, 2016
WI Zone 5a
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Recent posts by Clay Rogers

I have the beginnings of a permaculture orchard. I planted most of the trees about two years ago. I am modeling it after what Stefan Sobkowiak has done. He uses Honey Locust trees as nitrogen fixers in between is fruit trees.

I have black locust trees that are already growing and established in my area. So, I had used those instead of honey locust.

However, after seeing how black locust trees spread, and are very hard to completely remove if you don't want them there, I'm re-thinking the use of them in my orchard. I was thinking I can trim them to keep them smaller above the ground, but, that won't keep the root system from spreading.

Plus, the pods they drop are constantly producing new trees. I suppose I would just have to stay on top of any new ones that start to grow and pull them out before they have a chance to get established.

What do you guys think? Should I remove them now while they are still small? Or, do you think they will do the job of nitrogen fixing well and so I should leave them?

3 years ago
I have about 20 fruit trees in my orchard. All were just planted this spring. Originally, I had planned on doing hardware cloth around the trunk for protection.

However, I am noticing that deer are able to easily reach above the hardware cloth and nibble away. So, I need a different plan.

I am going to try bars of soap for now but I need a more permanent solution. What kind of fence would you recommend to put around my orchard? What else should I factor in?

I was thinking something along the lines of fence #3 as described on this page:

I saw this fence made for deer:

Where is generally the best place to purchase items needed for fencing?

Thanks for the help!
4 years ago
Thanks for the quick reply. It's funny because I had ordered 20+ black locust trees to plant with my fruit trees for nitrogen etc. Along with other places around the property for harvesting for firewood.

Then, I realized that a lot of the trees that I cut down a year ago when we bought the place were probably some kind of locust. These are shoots coming back from where I had cut them down.

So, if these are black locust I might spend more time transplanting them vs buying from nurseries.
4 years ago
I am looking for helping identifying what I think is some sort of locust tree. Here are some pics:

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What type do you think it is?
4 years ago
Thanks for the info so far. I know I will have to deal with pests moving forward. I was just planning on not having to deal with it yet.

I was mainly concerned about them killing my trees at this point as I'm not worried about losing fruit as I won't have any this first year.

I have LOTS to learn moving forward though. I am hoping to go a more permaculture method where I don't have to intervene so much. I planted way more trees than I need fruit from planning on losing some to natural pests etc. I of course would like to harvest for our use more than pests take for themselves.
5 years ago
I just planted fruit trees this year and was planning on my main battle this year being that I would need to keep them well watered. Well, I have noticed a bunch of holes in the leaves of my young trees. I was looking around under some of the leaves and this guy fell from one of the leaves.

Here are a couple pictures. My question is, what is it and what do I do about it?

5 years ago
Tyler - Thanks so much for the time you took to put this together!

I'll have to find some info on actually implementing/digging a swale.

One thing that I just noticed now is that our existing chicken coop does not show on the picture as the tree canopy shields it from view. It's South of the house at the edge of the trees. We are using it mainly because it was there already and we only needed to do a little work on it to get it ready to house chickens.

Thanks again for your work on this!
5 years ago
I don't know that I would say drought. But, we definitely have years where we don't get enough rain for crops to grow well so farmers etc do irrigate.

I'm not really planning commercial but I do have a large orchard planned. Mainly to account for loss of trees in no small part because I don't know what I'm doing, and to account for years when not everything will bear well. Those years, I'm thinking of putting back a lot and possibly having a stand out by the road.

They used to keep cattle on this property I'm told but mainly just left them out. In the following picture, you will see a metal shed that used to be used for horse stalls. Here is the pic of the house area:

And here it is if that image is too small: House Closer Up Picture

5 years ago
If you are like me and didn't know there was a permaculture design area of the forum click here to check out my post requesting help on permaculture design:

The design forum seems buried compared to this part of the forum but is an important part if permaculture is something you want to implement on your property.
5 years ago
Well, we are actually thinking goats next, mainly for milk. After that, I would like to raise a few cattle. Just enough to supply us with beef for the year. I was watching a youtube video where he made the case that cattle really don't need shelter in the winter. Just pasture to forage.

Our property is kind of odd. we basically have a small front yard, small back yard, and 15+ acres of side yard. So, the huge downside is not being able to put as much close to the house as we would like. We put the garden in a closer spot as it will need more attention, and the orchard farther away needing less attention for that reason.

How would you suggest to divide up the pasture into sections?

I'm interested Tyler in what you come up for a design. One of the downsides of my property is the wet area around the middle where the wet weather creek is. If we use it for pasture, it will be really wet in spring and would turn into mud quickly. Some neighbors have said I should tile it but I'm waiting until I come up with a large scale plan.

Tyler, any info you have for me is greatly appreciated!
5 years ago