[permaculture] introduction

Paul Cereghino paul.cereghino at comcast.net
Tue Sep 26 02:24:28 EDT 2006

Rich -- Glad to hear that there is finally some competition for ESRI!  
Do you know if QGIS has the ability to draw and calculate the area of 
polygons.  Or alternately if there is a free extension for ArcGis 9.x 
that has the same functions as XTools -- a once free extension created 
for ArcView 4.x by some forestry guys in Oregon?  I have used GIS for 
site planning and have found it very useful... given that you have some 
rational for developing the proficiency.  For native revegetation 
projects I typically divide sites into polygons based on the 
intersection of existing conditions and desired future conditions.  GIS 
allows calculation of polygon area.  The areas can be used as the basis 
for calculating plant counts based on templates and density... the 
fastest way to get from a landscape to a shopping or propagation list.  
I have developed an Access database that allows multiple planting 
templates to be applied in multiple phases over multiple zones and then 
it spits out a range of reports from nursery requests for availability 
to plant placement specs and cost estimates based on stock type.  These 
reports can be 'rolled up' by phase or by zone or whatever your 
interest.  The template concept translates well to the guild concept.  
Multiple templates in a zone can be a multiple guild mosaic.  I am 
looking for critique and the database is roughly public domain if you 
have Access.  I have been considering buying the Plants for a Future 
database so I can adapt this tool to agroforestry design, but I am 
unsure how well I would be able to query the PfaF database for species 
appropriate to my temperate maritime dry summer climate, though I could 
hand pick based on personal preference and availability.

Paul Cereghino
Olympia, WA, USA

Rich Blaha wrote:

>Hi Johnathan
>It sounds like you've got a pretty good setup, and the aerial photo from 
>google maps seems like you've got options and infrastructure nearby.....fun!
>I can speak somewhat to the mapping options you discussed...I've put our 
>farm design into GIS format, available at 
>http://www.mossbackfarm.com/archive/000179.html .  GIS is very handy for 
>design purposes, allowing different layers to be laid down, giving a 
>good sense of landscape, traffic, and infrastructure patterns.  It can 
>greatly speed visioning and planning, without lots of erasing or mylar 
>sheets.  Especially for those of us lacking in drawing skills.
>I use ESRI products, which are expensive, and fortunately for me, paid 
>for by my employer.  An open source version is QGIS (http://qgis.org/), 
>which uses some of the same file formats, but has fewer analysis and 
>cartographic options.  Can't beat the price, though.
> Alternatively, you could get in touch with the local university GIS 
>department (http://www.du.edu/gis/ for example) and see if any students 
>there want to take on your cause as a project.
>If you're hoping to serve up the GIS data (eg. 
>http://washims.co.washington.or.us/InterMap/InterDetails.cfm?GoNav=1) , 
>you're looking at a more complicated and expensive system, called an 
>Internet Map Server (IMS).  You'd definitely be needing tech support far 
>beyond my expertise in that case.  One step at a time, then....
>Good luck
>Mossback Farm
>Yamhill, OR

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