Thursday, May 14, 2009

The first step to permaculture

We just received our order of fruit trees from Raintree nursery. Four peach trees and four apple trees. Permaculture is a concatenation of permanent agriculture. This is generally considered to include fruits, nuts, berries, bushes, trees, and garden plants that reseed or multiply, like strawberries, asparagus, rhubarb, some species of onions and jerusalem artichokes. This would be in contrast to plants that you have to plant every year and are care intensive. The theory of permaculture is that once you have it going and balanced, you end up with a "food forest" that just keeps making food with little effort on your part. We'll see.

I initially decided to dig the 8 holes by hand, with a shovel. You don't need a humongous hole for a bare root tree, right? This lasted for one hole. You have to remove the grass, which saps nutrients and moisture from fruit trees when they most need it. The soil hadn't been worked in decades, etc. And hey, I HAVE a back hoe. So, I dropped the disk, hooked up the back hoe and was pleased that it worked perfectly right from the get-go. I would have gotten all the seven remaining holes done in an hour but then I saw this big bolt of vivid blue lightning and decided to pack it in after five holes. I'll finish up the rest in the next day or two.

The garden is about ready to put in. The tomato plants are getting several true leaves. The watermelon plants are looking vivacious. The muskmelon plants are all dying. This is odd, given that they are in the same no-soil mix, under the same lights, getting watered the same way, etc etc. Heirloom seeds are somewhat riskier than hybrid seed, but I am prepared to suffer some losses and may just purchase some prestarted plants at a garden center.

None of this should prevent us from blowing insulation again this weekend.

Finest regards,


No comments:

Blog Archive