Hello from Mid-USA

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself Here' started by cmcneal, May 5, 2018.

  1. cmcneal

    cmcneal New Member

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    I was going through our local library and came across the topic of Hugelkultur which I believe now translates to permaculture. Since you are a .org, I thought it might be worthwhile to join and share ideas. The permaculture concept is extremely interesting considering there are lots of logs on the land and I don't really know what to do with them other than invite some friends over and do a bonfire. After a while, it seems like a waste of resources to just burn them. In any case, the most perplexing thing to me is how does one bury the logs with soil without digging or using excavators? For one, I do not own a trailer to be able to haul an excavator over. Secondly, it is quite costly to rent an excavator. Looking for a good conversation on soil for mound building. Digging or no digging, I believe displaced soil won't be enough to create a mound. So, what does permaculture think soil is and where to get it? Looking forward to your encouragement in creating a successful start with permaculture even if it is a small start. Hopefully, I can learn a lot, successfully experiment and spread the wisdom of permaculture.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2018
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  2. 9anda1f

    9anda1f Administrator Staff Member

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    Welcome to the PRI Forums CMCNeal,
    Permaculture is the art and practice of living in concert with nature, rather than in conflict. Much of the western world's practice seeks to dominate nature and force it to submit to our short-term, profit-driven approaches (especially with regards to agriculture). Geoff Lawton has used the metaphor of Permaculture as a wardrobe, with hugelkultur being one of many techniques/hangars within that wardrobe. Swales, mulch pits, guilds, and hugelkultur are all techniques that follow the patterns nature has set-out for us to emulate, with an overarching goal of building living soil (which is essentially the basis for everything!).
    Hugelkultur is the result of observation of natural processes such as "nurse logs" and dead tree stumps/trunks, how the wood trunks decompose, and how they nurture other plants
    As far as hugelkultur mound construction goes, this article describes both small and large scale hugel-beds: https://permaculturenews.org/2012/01/04/hugelkultur-composting-whole-trees-with-ease/ If we look at hugelkultur as "composting whole trees", we can see that adding nitrogen (such as manures and green vegetation) to the mainly carbon tree parts will greatly accelerate the composting process while providing a moisture source and nutrients for hugel-bed plantings.
    Hope this helps your project to move forward. Looking forward to hearing about your progress!
     
  3. songbird

    songbird Senior Member

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    hello and welcome, :)

    you can just use them as edges if you have areas on a slope to hold back what might be
    flowing downhill.

    i don't burn anything if i can help it. i consider that a huge waste of energy (all that
    wood being reduced to ash).

    burying does speed up some forms of decomposition, but in MN you have enough
    surface soil moisture that it should go fairly quickly anyways. if they are newly
    fallen trees you can cut them in sections and innoculate with different fungi for
    growing mushrooms. or you can just move them off to the side and let nature
    take care of them.

    after a few years as they get beetles and grubs in there various animals will
    start helping the process along by tearing them apart looking for those.

    i bury things here a lot of the time because i cannot do as much cover planting
    as i'd like and that is the only way to help increase soil carbon and also because
    i find most composting methods more work than i want to put in and the soil
    community does as well of a job as a fast compost heap, but it is slower. it's
    ok with me... :)

    p.s. bury too deep in clay and they may not rot for many many years...
     
  4. cmcneal

    cmcneal New Member

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    Thank you for the warm welcome and advice. I definitely do not want to put in a lot of work into building a garden as I have a day job and budget limitations. I also believe that gardening should be a hobby for everyone. In short, it should not cost much to enjoy gardening. I have looked at the links Ganda1f has shared. One of the links mentioned top soil. I know that top soil is the top layer of the soil. But if that is not enough to bury logs, is top soil sold in home improvement stores the same as top soil being mentioned in the article?

    Thanks in advance for enlightening me..
     

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