An Apricot Tree
Development Plans 2016 and Forward
- Increase the number of beds in our market garden from over 40 to over 50. Beds are 42"X20-40'.
- Create talapia ponds and integrate with gardening system.
- Create environment and infrastructure for growin gourmet mushrooms.
- A sustainable ecosystem will be nurtured by planting primarily perennial plants and using permaculture techniques targeted for a dry climate, focusing on drought and disease-resistant varieties and good fruit producers. Tree-planting is on-going with some trees producing fruit now. Chinaberry trees are being planted for windbreaks, shade, and potential firewood and leaf mulch.
- Complete pond shade structure and rock-and-mortar the pond wall exterior and add on a produce washing/packaging station.
- Complete drip/spray systems for all perennials and garden beds
- Construct individual "eco-dwellings" from natural or cost-efficient building materials and passive solar design, to accomodate permanent residents as they join, when time and resources allow.
- Build a community center which will contain a common kitchen and meeting/hangout area
- We may use a modified Cal-Earth (earth bag/tube) construction, but will probably use different construction methods and materials for each structure. Adobe domes will be heated in the winter and cooled in the summer mainly using passive solar and thermal mass to moderate day/night temperatures, which can vary up to 50 degrees in a 24hr period. This may be supplemented by wood stoves in the winter and evaporative cooling in the summer, if necessary. For better weather mediation, the dome floor level can be 3 to 4 feet below ground.
- Create wind-breaks for comfort and good growing conditions, using the buildings and perennials as an outer barrier around the garden spaces.
- Gabions and check-dams will be heightened over time as gullies fill in with sediment, and repaired when needed.
- Swales will be fine-tuned and repaired to ensure they will hold water during the most violent "gully washers" and planted with trees and/or bushes.
- Additional trees and perennial vines, reeds, bamboo, and shrubs will be planted for windbreaks, shade, fruit crops, and privacy, and building materials,. Additional fruit and nut trees, vines, and shrubs will be planted, gradually expanding the variety and number of perennials.
- A tree nursery has been used to grow seedlings for later out-planting drought-tolerant trees, and will continue. We have already planted desert willows, Chinaberry trees, and pomegranates. Apricot rootstock "suckers" will be grafted with fruitwood scions for additional apricot trees, as well as purchasing more of them. We are also working on Mulberry cuttings.