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Any questions or comments you have about Natural Sequence Farming processes. These could include general questions or ones about your personal problems.

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Please remember, Natural Sequence Farming has to be tailored for your specific problem and to follow general advice may create more problems for you.

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duane
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Post by duane » Sat Nov 15, 2008 2:07 pm

Adrian

what part of the country are you located in??

Adrian
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Post by Adrian » Sat Nov 15, 2008 3:10 pm

Northern Victoria Shepparton Area.
Always keep an open mind

Shirley Henderson
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Post by Shirley Henderson » Sat Nov 15, 2008 6:51 pm

White Cedar Melia azederach will grow in most soils. With your sandy soil conditions add plenty of organic matter to help your soil retain moisture while your young trees are becoming established. As they grow they will provide their own organic matter by dropping their leaves. Protect them during extremes if possible such as those very hot 40 degree plus days. Winter should not be a problem because they are deciduous trees and are usually slowed right down then or dormant.
Plant in April to May when the weather is milder.
Rememebr to mulch them well as they will need moisture conserved for them at first.
Pittosporum phillyreoides and Pittosporum undulatum both are hardy and have deep searching roots for water so keep them away from your drains. They will provide much needed shade and cover for your creek banks.
Also deep searching roots are going to head for the water deep below.
Golden Robinia, Robinia pseudoacacia would be worth a try as it is fast growing, and also has those deep searching roots. Not sure how it will go.
Chinese Tallow Tree Sapium sebiferum is an excellent and fast grower. Gets a wide canopy and is easy to shape and guide it if you have specific plans. Produces ample leaf matter and enriches the soil. They grow easy from seed and are very hardy. That is one of my favourites.
All of these trees will need some organic enrichment to the soil to give them a kick off but eventually they will be providing the enrichment themselves.
Try them and see how they go before investing in too many. That would be my advice. :)
Kind regards
Shirley

duane
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Post by duane » Sat Nov 15, 2008 7:10 pm

Good tips there Shirley....we picked up a bucket of seed at Goulburn on friday of white cedar....I am not sure it will grow that far south?? but it does have a very wide distribution.

ONE thing you need to remember is biodiversity is the key. You could try constructing some small contours as Peter suggests and plant above and below the contour. Fill the contour with your pig waste and hope you get enough moisture to sustain them. Following Shirleys tips and planty of your pig waste will help.

Native Cypress, gorse, broom, salt bush, olives, wattles, esp black wattle A. mearnsii, lucerne trees etc etc

This has the potential to be a great case study Adrian....thanks for your contribution to the forum.
Last edited by duane on Thu Nov 20, 2008 10:47 am, edited 3 times in total.

Adrian
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Post by Adrian » Sat Nov 15, 2008 9:50 pm

Thankyou to both Shirley and Duane for your useful tips. I relaised that they do grow around my area as we have them at the schools and around town. I was thinking of digging a base out for where these trees will be planted and filling the holes up with pig waste, using the soil out of the hole to build swales on the down side to catch the excess rain that does run over the sand hill to go into the pig waste. Buy then when the trees are big enough to be planted after growing the seedlings, the pig waste will have lost most of its sting for the tree to be planted into and not be shocked.
I had thought of using liquid fertilizer on the sandhills, with the use of the grey water pipes under the ground to let the water seep into the ground, but with the White Cedar's roots maybe causing trouble i may look at using different trees for this system.
Always keep an open mind

Adrian
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Post by Adrian » Sat Nov 15, 2008 10:17 pm

When i do plant them i will be using 44 gallon drums cut in half to place around them to keep them rabbits away from the fresh trucks of the trees at first. I have found that buy slicing the half drum up one side and then tying with a piece of wire, you dont have the problem of removing the guard once the tree is established.
Always keep an open mind

duane
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Post by duane » Sun Nov 16, 2008 9:18 am

Adrian

If you have grey water as a resource and you construct the contours/swale as you described I think you have a great chance for success.

There is a post on this forum from Shirley, saying Melias are fire retardant natives and their leaf litter increses pH. They are primary colonisers, natives, and tolerate a wide range of conditions, and shed all their leaves as mulch.

Mulloon Creek Natural Farms have a pink tree guard that costs around $2+ that could be useful.....google that to see.

I think with the grey water, pig manure and contours you could be on a real winner. You need your fertility at the top including your trees and course vegetation and you need gravity to transport your water and fertility to the flats below. This gives you the perched system that the Australian landscape was based on.

Shirley Henderson
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Post by Shirley Henderson » Sun Nov 16, 2008 6:38 pm

Plane trees are mentioned in Peter new book. I lived in Adelaide and remember these trees well. Apparently though some of these trees can cause allergies but this hybrid is ok. Platanus x hybrida (London Plane). It grows big and worth a try. Also tollerates very wide range of conditions including drought, compaction, poor drainage but prefers good drainage. Don't forget the Poplar also mentioned in Peters book. Posasibly Populus alba and deltoiodes, they grow large make great wind breaks but also have extensive roots and can sucker. Most drought tolerant plants need to become well established first.

Adrian
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Post by Adrian » Sun Nov 16, 2008 10:23 pm

Do any of these trees pose any threat to cattle? As we would be using the trees in places where cattle can get shade through the hot summers afternoon. And also through winter for feeding hay and straw.
Thinking that by making alot of holding cells on top of the sand hills, with one or two paddocks per cell we will be able to control the foot traffic throughout the year, with that we can preserve the needed ground cover to keep the moisture in the ground. So that the sand hill will convert more of the pig waste into fertile soil down below the swales.
Always keep an open mind

Shirley Henderson
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Post by Shirley Henderson » Mon Nov 17, 2008 7:08 am

Try this website as a guide to trees that can be used for fodder. http://www.mtg.unimelb.edu.au/publications/des_ch5.pdf
As Duane says diversity is the key. Some may be detrimental if eaten as the only food but for short periods of time or mixed with other food sources they will not hurt them. A diverse mix of vegetation is what Peter recommends.
Shirley

duane
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Post by duane » Mon Nov 17, 2008 7:41 am

You may wish to read this excellent article by Jerry Brunetti of ACRESUSA on Biodiverse Forage available from http://www.nsfarming.com/Media/Jerry%20 ... Forage.pdf

Shirley Henderson
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Kangaroo Valley and Pittosporum undualtum and fodder

Post by Shirley Henderson » Thu Jan 29, 2009 8:48 am

On the weekend my family and I took a trip down to Kangaroo Valley. Apparently there are no extremes of temperatures there and it is no surprise as it is a national park BUT on the drive I was surprised to find an abundance of PITTOSPORUM undulatum. It grew tall and shaded many areas but in the areas where there were many tall Eucalypts stood; it grew as a smaller more shrubby understory plant. The micro climate of Kangaroo Valley was one of Australia’s magnificent examples of how this country can be cooled. Some people might say that it is because it is a national park but I say it is because of the plants and the diversity.
When I arrived home I did some searches on the internet to see how Pittosporum was looked upon at Kangaroo Valley and it is one of the recommended trees to plant (except for bush regeneration sites). I thought that was pretty good as Bush regeneration sites are monitored, observed, studied and are excellent places to learn about Australian Native plants but to think about banning plants, native or exotics from other areas that are not constantly worked on is absurd. I have come to realise that Vegetation is the most important factor in cooling Australia, bringing back diversity and keeping all living creatures alive!
Something that really upsets me is the packing in of humans into small block housing and then covering the whole area with bitumen and concrete then draining as much rain as they can off the land.
Australia being as vast as it is could have us humans spread out with much vegetation and corridors in between housing and farming.
Lastly a bit more on Pittosporum (a highly regarded author and plant scientist) has listed her objections to Pittosporum being considered a weed in Australia. It is worth a look.
http://www.uow.edu.au/science/biol/esa/ ... howell.pdf
Her final thought for the future being
“Will all species that alter their range under changed climatic conditions be branded “environmental weeds” and eradicated from new habitats.”
Good on you Jocelyn
I would ask that you expand that thinking to plants holistically to plant species of the world.
As a final note, another native plant worth consideration for planting as it is hardy, long lived and often deciduous is Alphitonia exelsa. RED ASH.
Shirley
PS This may or may not be widely known but during my searching a found a native plant suitable for fodder. This may be of interest. Supple Jack or Ventilago viminalis apparently quite vigorous and widespread.

ColinJEly
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Post by ColinJEly » Thu Jan 29, 2009 10:51 am

Hello All
If Melia azederach is a deciduous tree that has pinnate leaves and a very nice fragrant pink/white pea flower, we have it growing in profusion as a street tree here in my local area in Melbourne? I asked the localcouncil workers what they were recently and they told me they were Melia's Haven't noticed them spreading uncontrolably in the streets.
BTW Angela, have you noticed the Buddleia's growing wild along the side of the Belgrave Rd between Tecoma and Upwey, no-one seems to be raising a hue and cry about them spreading, probably because they look so nice in flower?
Cheers

Col.

Shirley Henderson
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Pittosporum undualtum

Post by Shirley Henderson » Thu Feb 12, 2009 5:12 pm

I have in my mind from working with waterways and wetlands that Pittosporum undualtum is the best choice to replace Privet which is a problem weed where I live, although I would now rather see it left in place. However for those that insist on removing these large shrub/trees from the environment it is important to remember that these areas will dry out, dehydrate and they will no longer provide the moisture, shade, water, shelter, food or habitat that they have been doing so well. It is well known that they stabilise the banks but they do so much more than that.. Pittosporum does all the same things and it is NATIVE! Now some people are trying to declare this as a weed because of all these good qualities. And for PETER ANDREWS and NSF, I am saying WEED because I am trying to reach certain people, if I had my way (Which I dont) I would leave well enough alone. These wetlands full of Privet, Blackberrry and African box are the pipelines and corridors for our wetlands and wildlife. The sharp prickly Blackbery and African Box protect the wetlands from intrusion. Trying to make it full of the native species which you think should be there is destructive behaviour unless you are willing to work, replant, nurture, maintain and spend lots of money on those projects. If you cant then let the plants do it for you! Shirley

Nick
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Post by Nick » Mon Feb 16, 2009 1:06 pm

We have a white cedar in an open exposed paddock that is at least 75 years old and happy and healthy.

It gets less than 700mm of rain a year and is exposed to +40c to -10c and lots of wind. It's growing on heavy clay about 50 metres from a creek. It didn't suffer one bit from the drought.

It hasn't produced any offspring at all, but each year it does produce tonnes of seed and leaf mulch. I'm going to try and grow some seedlings in the nursery this year.

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