Tag Archives: irrigation

Episode-1167- Lori and Jeff Haynes on Olla Irrigation

Lori and Jeff Haynes of Dripping Springs Ollas

Lori and Jeff Haynes of Dripping Springs Ollas

In 2009 Lori and Jeff Haynes returned to the United States to a town called Dripping Springs, just west of Austin, Texas. After Jeff’s twenty-four year career as a Marine the couple was anxious to get back home to Texas and put down roots.

In 2011, Lori founded Dripping Springs OLLAS (DSO) with the mission of making the OLLA (pronounced oi ya) – a natural, geographically appropriate option for irrigation by self-reliant Southwestern gardeners. Lori designed and field tested the Dripping Springs OLLA which are made from Tecate clay per Lori’s specifications.

Today Jeff and Lori join us to discuss ollas as a low tech, traditional solution to Texas’ (and other areas) water issues, irrigation reduction and self reliance as well as integration in to your families system of nutritious and nourishing food production.

Resources for Today’s Show…

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK and you might hear yourself on the air.

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…

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK and you might hear yourself on the air.

Episode-629- Paul Wheaton on the Elimination of Irrigation

Paul Wheaton - Founder of Permies.com

Paul Wheaton from Permies.com

Yes you read the title correctly, elimination, not alternative, not creative, elimination.    Can irrigation truly be eliminated?  In my view absolutely, at least in many instances and one of our all time most popular guests Paul Wheaton returns to TSP to discuss exactly how to do it.

Join us today as we discuss swales, key line systems, terraces, hugelkultur, and over a dozen other ways plants get water in natural systems.

Irrigation is one of the most costly components of modern agriculture, it is also depleting one of most precious life giving resources, water.  Yet think about it, there are millions of acres of prairie, forest, jungle and savana that produce massive yields of plant matter every year and who irrigates them?  Imagine the impact if these systems could be scaled up to eliminate even 15% of current agricultural irrigation requirements.

The good news is many of them can be done in your own back yard, some are simple and others are complex but just by making a pile of rocks, burying some rotting wood or moving around a bit of soil you can vastly reduce your personal irrigation requirements.

Join Paul and I Today as we discuss…

  • How did ancient earth ever have plants without humans to water them
  • Tomatoes are actually a desert plant so why do they require so much water
  • Why does Paul call watering plants, “the imaginary birth of irrigation”
  • How many ways do plants have to get water in natural settings, many!
    • Polyculture interactions
    • Trees creating transpiration, condensation drip, etc
    • Natural mulching
    • Humidity rise
    • Key line systems
    • Terracing
    • Swales
    • Wind reductions
    • Tap root systems
    • No transplanting
    • Paddock shift livestock grazing
    • Dew ponds
    • Stacked rock systems
    • Edge utilization
    • Shade
  • The simple things you can do to get started on illumination of your need for watering
  • The advantages of letting some crops struggle
  • The work that proves these systems by visionaries like Lawton, Mollison, Holzer and Smits

Additional Resources for Today’s Show

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK and you might hear yourself on the air.

Episode-477- Call in Friday 7-16-10

Well I asked for calls last night and boy did you guys deliver, over 67 at this point came in so let me apologize  to the majority that won’t be on the air today but let me say I going to use a lot of them to preload a bunch of shows that will fill in for me when I am on vacation from July 27th – August 6th.

Join me today as we discuss…

  • Dealing with perennial native grasses in your raised beds
  • Installing drip irrigation on a budget
  • Getting internet access in remote areas (if you have a better solution please let me know)
  • What do our soldiers get paid, do they get a “bonus” for being shot at
  • What is a spring house and what is a Hydraulic Ram Pump
  • Are those little family stickers on cars a bad idea – probably
  • What is wood gasification and what can you do with it
  • Why is deflation bad, how can it be worse than inflation
  • What to do with 23 acres of raw land

Resources for today’s show…

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK and you might hear yourself on the air.