Tuesday, October 13, 2015

October New Moon Swale Building

This beautiful Autumnal day was just perfect to create swales and a huglekultur bed in Oakland.

The scene this morning.

This is a long back yard with a gentle slope. Approx. 140 x 60.
No irrigation.
A wild area with running Bamboo and Fennel at the back.
A useful live oak.
A few fruit trees.

The intention is to create rainwater harvesting swales which also serve as pathways.
Remove a couple of old trees.
Bury the Fennel and Bamboo plus other trimmings in a Huglekultur bed.
Create topographical interest and avoid straight lines.
Create planting areas for vegetables and perennials.
We called 811 for a survey and there were on utilities on this part of the lot.
We love that !

 After stripping out the Bamboo and Fennel we dug a large hole at the back of the lot.
Green material and roots fill the hole in a lasagna like layering with soil.

Excavator marks the site of the Huglekultur bed
Now the swale digging begins about 2 1/2 hours into the project.
Upper swale from the back

Upper swale from the front
Huglekultur on the right side

The whole project took about 6 hours.

The next step will be to fill the swales with tree chips.



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Learn how to sink carbon in your soil.

Meet and hear fascinating Matt Powers, nationally known permaculture expert with certification in permaculture design from Geoff Lawton!, certified high school teacher, author of The Permacultue Student, founder of The Permaculture Life School in Sebastopol and The Permaculture Student Online ( Matt will tell us about his experiences being trained and working with worldwide reknown permaculture experts, permaculture farming and gardening, and much more.

Agroecologist Bethallyn Black will teach you how to plant cover crops in your backyard and obtaining greater carbon sequestration in your soil. Cover crops support beneficial insects such as bees.

Rex Dufour a soil expert from NCAT/ATTRA and partner of the UC Berkeley's Growing Roots grant, will lead a presentation for urban farmers on Understanding Urban Farm Soils: Healthy soils, Soil Function and Soil Testing. This workshop is geared towards beginning urban farmers with less than ten years of experience who want to understand common problems and solutions for dealing with urban soils. Rex will discuss how to improve soil function, how to interpret a soil test and the different types of soil testing that are important for urban farm plots.

We will have a bee expert explaining how you can help Save Our Bees!

Global Student Embassy will tell us about their international volunteer projects training new farmers.

Mike McGill, President of Central San Board will talk to us about the value of recycled water for agriculture and other uses.

Andrew Sutherland, Ph.D. BCE, San Francisco Bay Area Urban Integrated Pest Management Advisor University of California Cooperative Extension / University of California Integrated Pest Management Statewide Program will teach us IPM so that we can protect our environment and our bees.

We'll have cover crop mix for first 200 attendees, compost, and you can pick up CCCSD recycled water if you qualify. Recycled water is high in nitrogen and phosphorus and you are eligible to get up to 300 gallons per trip, if you live in the CCCSD district, Concord, or Clayton AND you take short instructions to be certified. Check hours for pickup
Wear a HAT!!

"A cover crop is a crop planted primarily to manage soil erosion, soil fertility, soil quality, water, weeds, pests, diseases, biodiversity and wildlife in an agroecosystem (Lu et al. 2000)" 

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