Tag Archives: contour

Episode-1074- Contour Gardening and Woody Beds

As many of you know I have suggested that we call what most (not all) people are doing in America woody beds vs hugulkultur.  I suggest this for two reasons.

1.  People who don’t know about it already understand “woody bed” but look at you like you have a snake crawling out of your ear when you say hugulkultur.

2.  It is more accurate, hugul in the term hugulkultur pretty much means high as in high bed.  As in 1.5-2 yards high.  This is simply not what we are doing in America in most instances.

Since first learning about the entire concept from Paul Wheaton (as practiced by Sepp Holzer) I have worked with it in many different formats, from 6 foot high true huguls to in ground versions that appear like any typical framed in raised bed.  I have also studied the work of Permaculture visionary Geoff Lawton and become a huge fan of his swale based design systems.

As I continued both studying the work of others and putting it into actual field level work (I can’t stress how important that is) I have also learned how Geoff takes “swale like design” into raised bed gardening.   I have now found that taking the disciplines of swale style raised beds and adding wood core design to the mix is an incredibly efficient design structure.

Today I discuss the primary design structures of this type of system, why they work and what limitations each has.  From there we can see how a proper integration of all of them makes up a great deal for where each has certain weaknesses.

Join Me Today As I Discuss…

  • What is a swale and why does it work
  • What is the difference between a “swale like” structure and a true swale
  • How can contour paths act like swales when they are not below grade
  • Does it make sense to cut paths below grade (may be, it depends)
  • What is traditional hugulkultur
  • Why did Sepp Holzer and other actually bury wood in the first place
  • The limits of a “spongy core” based on mathematics as a simply reservior
  • What are mycelium and what role do they play in permaculture
  • How does the internal composting action protect roots in cold weather
  • Why isn’t the heat a danger in hot weather
  • Why deep mulching is a must
  • How you can practice polyculture, clumpy polyculture or even row mono culture
  • How does a contour based wood core system function end to end
  • Info on the upcoming workshop that will teach these techniques

Videos Of the Described Project – Direct Links to Youtube in the Resource List Below

Resources for today’s show…

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