[permaculture] voles and forest soil

Dieter Brand diebrand at yahoo.com
Thu Nov 4 15:25:29 EDT 2010


You are probably right that voles care more about food than about the soil environment.  Well, I guess it will be hard to prove any relation between voles and the fungal/microbial environment.

I have had asparagus for over 10 years and never had any losses due to voles, even though vole damage to most other plants, especially artichokes, has been considerable at times.

Most of our land is wooded and I find that growth in the under-storey is very much reduced; hence I keep on cutting back trees and bushes all the time.

Dieter Brand

--- On Thu, 11/4/10, Rain Tenaqiya <raincascadia at yahoo.com> wrote:

> From: Rain Tenaqiya <raincascadia at yahoo.com>
> Subject: [permaculture] voles and forest soil
> To: permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org
> Date: Thursday, November 4, 2010, 6:28 PM
> Hey Dieter,
> I don't think voles care about the microbes, merely about
> food.  In a shaded forest, there is little in the way of
> soft herbaceous material for them to eat.  The same is true
> in a well-mulched food forest, unless you have a lot of
> herbaceous food plants.  Because of this, I am decreasing
> the area I plan to cover with herbaceous understory,
> planting valuable long-lived perennials like asparagus in
> yucky wire baskets, while letting self-sowing annuals fight
> it out with the voles, under microsprayers.  
> Because of the inland California Summer heat and aridity,
> fire danger, and voles, I am having to lower my expectations
> for food forests in this climate, giving up the lush
> abundance I was used to in Oregon or on the coast of
> California.  The shrub and herbaceous layers will be more
> spread out, and many of my berry bushes won't even be able
> to be planted until the trees have created a solid canopy of
> shade.  Given the space I have, I guess I really don't need
> to cover the whole area in berries and greens, anyway.  I
> will concentrate my lush oasis fantasy in a smaller area
> right next to the house.
> Later,
> Rain
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