J Davis

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since Jan 23, 2019
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hugelkultur foraging homestead
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Recent posts by J Davis

Have a dozen plus of these. Am in e. Tn.

Trade for?
3 years ago
I too have hilly terrain. Plus, a lot of clay. So mobile carts get really heavy, especially when its been raining.

So ive been experimenting with modular chicken tractor that so fsr is working well even on the steepest terrain.

I use galvanized (I know, a bit ick) utility panels that are 5' x 20' s 4 inch grid. I use carabeeners to connect them at each end, top and bottom. I only use two panels at a time so the run ends up the shape of a spade (think playing cards). I have cut a few 2"x2"x10' with notches that help the run stay wide, and a few 2"x2"x4' to hold up food /water containers on each end. Then I drape a mesh tarp (UV tolerant) across the top and secure that to the carabeeners as well. I used some long thin sawmill castoffs for roosting about 6" off the bottom. All in, maybe 80 USD. It works for containment and the chickens seem to feel pampered and secure.

Now the gotcha. I dont move the run exactly. I build a new one adjacent and then open the end up so they can run to the new space. Then I disasemmble the prior one and store it nearby until it again becomes the new one. At 20' long, its a two person job. At 12' it would likely be manageable for one person. I added a large plant container on its side and tossed in leaves. They use it as nesting box happily.
3 years ago
The only one I can comment on is the cherry. The leaves of wild cherry, if wilted, concentrate cyanide and sometimes livestock dies from eating them.

The bark of some cherries is used in tea / medicine.
3 years ago
Good info,  and a bit concerning.

It highlights the relevance of "landrace everything" post on permies as individual action.

And it highlights the need to fund and crowdsource private sector projects like "plants for a future"
3 years ago
Should be safe for the vehicle, but if it is a heavy vehicle you may end up with enough compaction to keep moisture from making it into the ground which may be counterproductive to your goal.
3 years ago
Ambitious and perhaps risky business :)

What kind of soil? How much rainfall annually? 100 yr flood looks like? Overflow options for flood event?

Ive seen pics of indigenous projects on steep land like you sketched.ive also heard horror stories of landslides, etc.

Planting shrubs might be another way to at least get water into the subsoil.

Another consideration is gutter flow from house to cistern where you could store water for irrigation, drinking, etc
3 years ago
A treeline could help sink the water. Id suggest a crescent shaped swale yo slow it down. Then maybe plant rose of sharon hibiscus (edible flowers/young leaves) and/or elderberry (jelly/juice) on the downhill side.
3 years ago

So sorry to hear this.

The adaptor narrative of not being mad is all good until some badged thug sprays your food forest w herbicide.

First they came for the...
Ive read both your stuff and you are both very talented.

On the income stream, id just like to point out an analog (non digital) trend you could embrace. Plant inventory onsite consult for new property owners.

People are moving from cities to the country. Those people want some self reliance and they dont know what plants are on their property which might be useful for food / medicine.

I spent a hundred bucks to have a local plant expert walk my newly acquired land with me 7 years ago. Best hundred bucks I ever spent. 2 hours onsite tops.

Designing an edible yard on top of the inventory could bring in other fees. Plan. Selection. Planting. Training on first harvest, etc. Foraging training wheels...

Realtors are literally slammed right now, network with them to get referrals.

Anyway, good luck!
3 years ago
Close quarters and pigs might eventually be problematic. But the pigs dont need to stay forever. You could even fence with utility panels and t posts so you can repurpose when they have done their job.

As for the pine/oak. Hugel mounds are great but best when comprised of variety of sizes of wood. Big logs take longer to break down. That said, if you have a topsoil layer (not just sand) then digging impression, layering logs, then branches, then sticks, then leaves, then topsoil will work. Id position it just uphill of where rain enters the pond and make the rain hit it and go around, soaking in in the process. That should serve double duty to cut sediment flow into the pond and give you a raised bed that is self irrigated.
3 years ago