[NAFEX] Growing Mulch
kodama at riseup.net
Tue Mar 23 10:53:04 EDT 2010
This may be a silly question, but as I've begun planting and planning
my modest orchard, I've run into a lack of available mulching
materials (or more likely, I'm just blind to what's staring me in the
face). The orchard's in a rural area and there aren't the abundant
flows of woodchips and leaf-litter found in the urban areas. But, in
consideration of a future with much less energy to spend on
woodchippers, I've been wondering what I could use for mulch.
Right now I'm thinking I'll plant a coppice-or-pollard field
downslope where I can take the shoots and lay as mulch around some of
my fruit and nut trees upslope. I'm not sure which species I'll use,
but possibly a mix of Basswood, Black Birch and maybe even Willow. My
thinking is that if I coppice or pollard them on a fairly regular
basis I can have a good supply of small woody shoots that will act as
a decent mulch, break down relatively quickly and possibly enrich the
nutrient content of the soils around my food-trees (I think Black
Birch accumulates K, P, and Ca; Tilia P and Ca). I guess I'm
wondering if anyone has experience with this sort of thing, what
species you use, and how it works.
In case it's relevant the orchard is/will-be comprised of primarily
Hazels, Chestnuts, Crabapples, and Juneberries.
Or maybe there's blindspot I have and this isn't a good idea?
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