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View Diary: What is Sustainable Landscaping? (127 comments)

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  •  Wonderful account! (14+ / 0-)

    You are a person after my own heart! I think a diary on this might inspire people, much as Sara Stein's "Noah's Garden" inspires, but for a different kind of habitat.

    We are doing something similar on our acreage in SE Nebr which was just bare pasture 25 years ago. We planted ankle-high windbreak trees which are now practically forest, hedgerows, a large organic garden, lots of restored prairie,  a water drainage garden, no pond as yet. My orchard has been problematic. The climate is harsh on fruit trees, plus I have never really tended them as much as they would like.

    The last year I was growing food (before my illness), I weighed all of my produce throughout the season, and it came to 1,000 pounds--half a ton!

    I love it that Obama's channeling Harry Truman: "I don't give 'em hell; I just tell the truth and they think it's hell!"

    by sillia on Sun Jan 20, 2013 at 10:33:23 AM PST

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    •  That's just great, and on such a larger scale, (10+ / 0-)

      it's a lot of work!  I live on southern edge of the Buffalo Wind Ridge (I can see many windmills from my front yard) and the wind stresses all my plantings, too. The trees not sheltered by the house literally grow sideways!  

        I've planted 7 heirloom apple trees, two northern peaches, three pears, two cherries--red and black--and an apricot, so far (NOT native, but I've also planted more native fruit bearing trees than non-native, to compensate) but my "harvest" has been disappointing so far, too. I don't prune as severely as I should, and some years it's literally so windy (we have long "blows" that last for days and nights without stopping) that the blossoms can't get pollinated before they dry up....Rabbits killed both peaches and one apple during some deep snow winters,  and I lost the pears to blight...But you never know what might just "take" so I keep on keeping on.

      •  Yes, we keep on replanting (7+ / 0-)

        every other year or so, but it seems slightly futile as far as the fruit trees go. People around here do grow fruit, though--you see articles in the newspaper about some 85-yr old retiree who harvested 100 bushels in his backyard, LOL. Those folks are in town and somewhat more sheltered, plus who knows what dreadful toxins they spray on them!

        I do think we could get better results if we paid more attention to the fruit trees, but it does get to be a lot of things to look after all at the same time.

        As far as the vegetable garden work, I have raised beds that I converted to the Ruth Stout hay mulch system. I LOVE this method! It is much less actual work, although you do have to tend & fuss a little bit every day to keep it going. For me, since my office is in my home, going out and tinkering gently for 20 minutes a day is not a problem, it's a nice break. If you do that and keep the hay thick enough, you never do get weeds, watering is much less, the plants grow bigger--basically we thought the results were fabulous starting with the second year in. With my illness I'm not able to even do the little that's required so it's all abandoned for now. Maybe in a year or two I can start up again.

        The most "work" I had when I was growing food with the hay mulch system was all the food processing, LOL. I mean, you do actually have to do SOMETHING with all that stuff. But wow, does the food taste better--I really, really miss it!

        I love it that Obama's channeling Harry Truman: "I don't give 'em hell; I just tell the truth and they think it's hell!"

        by sillia on Sun Jan 20, 2013 at 11:09:05 AM PST

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