[permaculture] Herblands

Mark mpludwig at facstaff.wisc.edu
Sun Sep 8 12:30:07 EDT 2002

At 10:21 AM 9/7/02 -0500, you wrote:
>Mark & All,
>Here's some more data from the Pc Design Manual attesting to the amazing
>production potential of grasslands.  They're all from the same page.
>p. 436  "If the forest takes 80 years to regrow from the ground level, then
>it yields or gains about 2.5 t / ha / year.  If the grasses can be cut or
>grazed twice in a season, they can yield some 10 t / ha / year."

and pay the bills much sooner.

>"Grasslands (or rather herblands) lie between forests and deserts.  Alpine
>herblands lie above the treeline, and below the barren upper slopes of
>mountains, as savannahs lie between humid rainforest and deserts, and
>riverine or shoreline herbfields between the forest and open water."
>The section goes on to say that herblands are best harvested by wildlife
>rather than farming.

Only if you get paid for letting people shoot them.  Sorry to be so blunt 
but I'm very focused on getting paid these days...

>"We may never again equal the product yield of the 60 million bison on the
>American prairies, with their unnumbered associated hordes of pronghorn and
>mule deer, and a host of minor species.

Just swap in the cattle (and/or bison) and give it 100 years to redevelop 
the aquifer and soil quality and we're there.  In fact it will be better 
because we can balance the soil chemistry and design the landscape with 
farmer trees etc.

>Interesting stuff to ponder.  I would sure like to see a resurgence of the
>bison and its minions as the Russians have apparently done with the Saiga
>"Russia has preserved and encouraged the Saiga antelope (from near
>extinction in the 1940's) to over a million today, and can cull 40% of these
>annually for food."
>"About 24% of the earth's surface is in some form of grasslands."

More than forest land I believe.

>Maybe with all the international attention on carbon sinks, and the U.S.A.'s
>proclivity to avoid reducing its emissions, some serious herbland
>rehabilitation will get underway utilizing bison, antelope and deer.
>Huge grazing stations the size of Texas would spot the Great Plains of North
>America where people feasted on buffalo steaks and venison backstrap!  Am I
>dreaming?  We couldn't live without our cereals and soy beans could we?

Hey buddy that's what sweet corn is for!
>permaculture mailing list
>permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org

Mark P. Ludwig
Poultry Research Lab
University of Wisconsin -Madison
608-262-1730 WK
608-846-7125 HM

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