WOW. this was much more information than I was expecting. Thank you all for the great tips.
Our hay is from our land and has not been sprayed or fertilized with anything for about 20 years. We have embarked on this deep mulch swalling and Never Till methodology because the land we are on is heavy clay and rocky. I felt that tillage or trenching could break a lot of equipment and end up being very expensive. It is our 2nd growing season here. Last year we covered with heavy black plastic and planted manly diakon radish (which were not harvested) and other beneficial cover crops. The plastic eventually began falling apart so we had to find a new way.
We also spread kitchen scraps about because we don't like turning a compost pile (and we don't create enough to make a pile worth while)
I really like the idea of berms or the trademark Wheaton massive hugelkultur beds. The area pictured is the flattest part of our land. It is roughly 30 x 200 covered in hay down to the red thing in the background; this is designated for croppy crops. It is about 50 yards from the house (there is virtually nothing plant-able around the house). It's where we are putting most of the standard annual veggies & herbs, not a mono crop, but definitely the least diverse/perminant area of the farm. Further down the field we'll have companion planted sorghum / beans. Wind is a serious consideration this is ridge land.
We have other areas Hay berm swaled for berries, perennials and we are currently planting about 300 native fruit and nut trees and bushes on contoured hay swales. We've been rolling the bails out and basically folding it over to create an very thick heavy berm. Our region has had a 100 year rain fall this fall and winter and 40-60 mile wind gusts... we have not seen any migration of the hay once it's matted down.
We are also using Straw on our garlic instead of hay (but we have to buy that), saw dust, leaves, wood-ash, there are a few areas where we are edging areas with small trees and sticks, and hopefully getting some wood chips soon (having a hard time procuring them).
We have a dog for the big vermin. There are a few feral cats that seem to hang out here a lot, we are getting some chickens to rotate and some free ranging Guineafowl soon. Hopefully these friends will help with the lil'critters..
I'm not sure I know what you mean by frost pockets.
Map of this area of the farm. We intend to build wwoofer quarters and harvest processing station in the flat part of the berry swales.