Kit Veerkamp

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since Mar 29, 2016
Cool, CA
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Recent posts by Kit Veerkamp

I addition to some of the other good advice posted, I'd recommend deep ripping the entire area before you do anything else. Compaction is one of the most difficult aspects of soil to ameliorate because getting pore space back so that air and water move through it properly is exceptionally difficult. Ripping will give you a huge head start on that, then, with getting as much organic matter, Mother Nature will take it course to build the soil as the Soil Food Web grows and improves.
1 year ago
Two other groundcovers you might consider are sweet alyssum and creeping thyme. Super easy to grow from seed and persistent. And they help attract and feed a host of beneficial insects to boot.
1 year ago
Being in a hot-summer climate, you want to build a passive greenhouse with a solid roof in order to minimize solar gain in summer. I'm in the process of building a detached greenhouse right (in California) now that I did a lot of research on to plan it. Building a thermal mass wall below the south-facing windows will help heat the room in the winter. An arbor should be built to extend out from the south wall that will shade the windows in the summer but allow solar access in winter. Grow a deciduous fruit vine on it for better shade. You will need to calculate how far to extend the arbor based on where you live to be able to have the sun hit the windows up until the time in the spring when the weather starts to get too warm. For me that is the end of May. The whole object is to maximize solar gain in winter but minimize it it in the summer! I've attached two images showing a simple attached greenhouse that is suitable for hot-summer areas and a diagram that shows the way to calculate how far the roof or arbor needs to extend to shade the windows in summer. These came from a Mother News article on How to Build a Passive Solar Greenhouse. The problem with the article is that many of the images are for areas with cooler summer climates.
2 years ago