Have last year's raised garden overrun with Bermuda grass. Couldn't keep up
with it for weeding. I remember the chicken coop and fenced in area around
it many years ago growing up. The chickens kept everything preened, no
green could grow. My plan is to spread that soil out some and put a chicken
coop and fenced open area for the chickens. Adjacent to it, I plan to start
another raised area with store bought soil with chicken feces and green
kitchen refuse to lay for a year or 2.
Central TX. High alkaline soil (mostly, if not all, limestone rocks and
caliche). Poor rainfall. High summer temps bleeding over to fall. Native
ashe juniper leaf-fall affects all plant growth rate from rain run-off.
My intent is to eventually create a self sustaining adjacent garden to feed
the chickens and me. Rotating every 3 years, garden for chicken area.
Possibly, the coop on skids to ease the move.
Best grain to plant to support the chickens with least square footage
I can create shade if needed over the fallow field. Should I use a soaker
hose or just water it down once in awhile?
Please, no oil-based fertilizer suggestions.
Good questions. Don't have the answer. Your environment is very different
than this one in South Eastern PA (USA). If we were to make a raised bed
garden I would start with a boundary for raising the bed, I would try to get
some black locust logs. I would surely not consider using railroad ties or
any other type of treated wood with attention on the chemicals in treated
wood leaching in your garden. Black locust as it dies or as parenchyma
cells die (symplast) the nitrogen based substances move out. So in order
for common fungi to break down the wood, such as a post in the ground, Some
people ask me if I have a PhD, yes, I have several post hole diggers
somewhere. Black Locust (Robinia pseudoacacia) was named after the first
arborist. The first arborist's name was pronounced "row-bin"(sic)? I was
taught the tree was named after him, i.e., from a reliable source. Then I
would go get a dump truck load of Certified Organic Mushroom soil from
Mother Earth Organic Mushrooms. [http://www.organic.com /] I then would
(Land lord makes final decisions) would add about a dump truck load (7
commercial yards) of screened top soil. Together by mixing the both I would
hope to end up with good soil. Defined as a substance made up of sands,
silts, clays, decaying organic matter, air, water and an enormous number of
living organisms. I myself like zucchini and it grows well with little if
any so-called pest. I think we are going to close this garden in. A late
client and his wife had a organic garden - WOW! They wrote some sections
for me http://home.ccil.org/~treeman/bradley/index.html . My father has an
organic garden and he is going to start some plants for me. I would get a
load of leaf compost from somewhere. Its great when its just been screened.
I would mulch the plants with leaf compost to keep down 99% of undesired
plants (so-called weeds). It would be serving multi functions like feeding
the soil micros and retaining moisture. I hope we get one together. Good
luck with yours. What are some of the native trees in your area? Does
anyone have a suggestion related to keeping the leaf compost off the stems
of the plants. On those plants I would put the leaf up to the plants.
Chicken manure would be best if composted for a year or more. The people I
have gardened with don't use products like preen. Don't require it. Why
waste the money on something not required to have healthy plants? Leaves
are great. I would make an attempt at adding some composted wood chips to
feed the soil cellulose. As long as they are composted and symplastless I
would think they would be fine. Any thoughts?
I know the fallen leaves of ashe juniper limit growth of anything in their
vicinity. What about the tree itself? Can I use trunks of these trees for
soil retention walls?
Native trees on my land are strictly ashe juniper, and live oak. I hate to
cut down any live oaks.
I do have some utility poles the local electrical coop left their some 20
years ago. They look like pull-ups and replace types, not something they
pulled off the truck and dumped.
The fallow side, I was going to get some bagged topsoil I can get rather
inexpensively, and go from there. I can get refuse from a local grocery
store from their produce department along with the chicken feces. I can get
some bagged sand from the local hardware store as an drainage aid. Won't
when you say fallow field, do you mean where the chickens are doing
their job? so you wouldn't need weed control, but i'd wonder about
whether they'd peck holes in soaker hose. otherwise, i recommend
soaker hose highly. not only water efficient, but you can leave it
there when it's the garden side, and use plastic mulch over top with
holes punched in for your plants; this keeps weeds down hugely. i know
the plastic mulch is oil-based, but it's not as much of an ongoing
impact as the artificial frertilizer.
no, sorry, i meant the soaker hose under the plastic mulch, of
that not only is very water efficient but also prevents all those
diseases which are resident in the soil until water splashes them up
onto the leaves, like that thing tomatoes get. plus the weed
suppression, of course.
HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here.
All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.