Friday, January 01, 2016
New Year's Day. Clearing Blackberries. Rain Water Barrel. 1.1.16
When this area is cleared, the back / North end may get some Cyprus as a privacy hedge and to hold soil. Downhill from that is a ravine. More within view and a little south of the Cyprus, I want to plant some diverse types of trees. The remainder of horticultural remediation for the Himalayan blackberry thicket monoculture, will involve planting grass seed and frequent mowing until blackberries are fully dead and no more self-regeneration from seeds or underground roots or runners. Then maybe let it go a little more wild with wild flowers. I may not follow that plan as my thoughts evolve.
Cat was hiding in the brambles. I hope she finds a good place to hide otherwise. We need a predator for rabbits and voles and moles and t mice.
I placed the first of the black plastic sod-killing weed-killing sheets. Rather than tilling or applying weed killer - no damn way - we put down the big plastic sheets for about 4 or 5 months. All of the plants under the plastic die. On removing it in Spring, the soil is soft and easily dug. Far easier than any other method, effective, and no poisons used. We will create, maybe, 4 or 5 beds, for sunflowers, sorghum / broom corn, amaranth, and Indian corn - all of which are for experiment for home-grown chicken feed. Plus they all look interesting and beautiful. The Indian corn will need to be a big distance from the sweet corn, so neither gets pollen from the other.
2016 is expected to be hotter and more dry than 2015. We are on a well, but the water, especially in summer, is very mineral rich and full of iron sediment. The filters clog quickly, and are expensive to replace. Harvested water will be much less expensive in the long run, avoid run-off, and is plenty pure enough for garden and chickens.
This was a Fiskars unit, bought a few years ago at Home Depot. There has been no leakage but algae does grow in the barrel during summer.