Hugelkultur – A backyard suburban rotting log, garden bed.

One man and a chainsaw can mulch anything.
I highly recommend you utilise the assistance of friends in this project as lifting logs is a killer on the body. Even worse when you’re on a 30°-40° slope.

The premise is you bury logs under soil and plant on top of them. Initially it’s not so great as the bacteria breaking down the logs steal nitrogen from the plants nearby. This effect however is reversed with interest afterwards. You can plant in the dirt covering the logs and they will flourish from the decomposition happening below the surface.

I had two massive trees that were felled in my back yard and I wasn’t keen on lugging them uphill to the street to load them on a truck to take them to the dump. A friend sent me a link to hugelkultur sites and I immersed myself for several days in this whole new world.

 

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A story of sowing my wild legumes.
More Cowbell Cowpea !

Yesterday on the way back from the farm we stopped into the local bulk seed supplier so that I could get some cowpea to scatter in the back yard. I can’t believe how awesome and farm-like it feels to purchase a giant 25kg sack of seeds, throwing it over your shoulder to take back for use in an inner city block!

 

For $55 I basically got my own little nitrogen and soil breaking factory. The idea being the roots will infiltrate my clay soil and slowly break it apart and at the same time load it up with nitrogen for my soon to be tree and vegetable planting mission.

 

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The Permaculture Project Inspiration

This is the story of how it all started. I went across the world to the Nevada desert to meet a guy named John who lived one suburb away from my home. We bonded over a game of Giant Jenga at Burning Man and upon our return back to Brisbane I had the opportunity to head out to his permaculture farm for a party beneath the misty peak of Mt. Warning.

I decided to stay an extra night and recover from the party and he asked if I’d assist in shelling a garbage bag full of pigeon pea. He had harvested them from a couple of plants he’d had growing with the aim to use the seed to scatter over his 100 acres and thus increase the amount of nitrogen fixing vegetation available to his dirt.

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