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Author Topic: Plant, protect, repair  (Read 645 times)

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Offline DonW

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Plant, protect, repair
« on: February 16, 2021, 12:05:04 PM »
Maybe the answer is obvious at the same time not so Linier and there are also combinations that are comlimentary. There is a piece of land, its where iim living now, border of alpine and desert zones with varied terrain. I'm choosing to possibly begin with ripairian area for a better ecology, a small year-round creek where i want to increase the tree and shrub stands. Is there a generalized standaard or principles to go by for establishing a deginning point? My experiance is limited but a thought was to use rubbish from dead-fall and invasive Russian Olive to line the banks and provide protection for New plantings and shore up the creek edges against cows. 

Offline DonW

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2021, 12:08:11 PM »
Please excuse the state of my postings, my computer situation is not ideal. 

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2021, 12:32:20 PM »
Very little life can come to fruition without ground moisture.  Anything that increases ground moisture will improve the diversity of inhabitation of that ground.  


Shade and grazing prevention are probably the best things to start with.  Google "nurse log" and see where that takes you.  
Psalm 37:16

Offline Old Greenhorn

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2021, 01:13:41 PM »
Please excuse the state of my postings, my computer situation is not ideal.
For a second I mis-read this and thought you had to go to another state to use a computer. I wondered if Colorado had some kind of new rule?
 Carry on.
Tom Lindtveit, Woodsman Forest Products
Oscar 328 Band Mill, Husky 450, 372 (Clone), Mule 3010, and too many hand tools. :) Retired and trying to make a living to stay that way. NYLT Certified.
OK, maybe I am the woodcutter now.
I can work with wood, but I am NOT a Woodworker, yet.

Offline DonW

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2021, 01:14:28 PM »
I looked it up and it didn't take long to see that this process also seems dependent on ground moisture, and not a little either. My conditions are desert almost compounded by a multi year drought it's why I hought better start at he creek's edge. It's a reliable source of moisture but it's small. Beavers would remedy things on their own in short order but with no willows, no beavers. 

Offline DonW

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2021, 01:15:53 PM »
Please excuse the state of my postings, my computer situation is not ideal.
For a second I mis-read this and thought you had to go to another state to use a computer. I wondered if Colorado had some kind of new rule?
 Carry on.
Ok, ok, maybe my syntax is not ideal neither. 

Offline Old Greenhorn

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2021, 01:36:22 PM »
Please excuse the state of my postings, my computer situation is not ideal.
For a second I mis-read this and thought you had to go to another state to use a computer. I wondered if Colorado had some kind of new rule?
 Carry on.
Ok, ok, maybe my syntax is not ideal neither.
Oh No, your syntax was just fine. My brain on the other hand, could use a little work. :D
Tom Lindtveit, Woodsman Forest Products
Oscar 328 Band Mill, Husky 450, 372 (Clone), Mule 3010, and too many hand tools. :) Retired and trying to make a living to stay that way. NYLT Certified.
OK, maybe I am the woodcutter now.
I can work with wood, but I am NOT a Woodworker, yet.

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2021, 02:17:25 PM »
Can you dam this creek to store water?  


My garden probably wouldnt survive most summers if i didnt water it and shade the soil with a topcover of sawdust and leaves to keep the moisture in the dirt.  This practice has shown dramatic increases in growth and tolerance of blistering sun.  A cucumber leaf for instance will droop in full sun in order to reduce its surface area and absorb less sun when its roots have access to insufficient moisture for the amount of sun.   If a cloud comes over or if i drape a shade cloth over the top to reduce solar input, the leaves will uncurl within half an hour.  



If youre really serious and willing to do the work, a small pond, buckets, an artificial shade system to grow under and organic compost coverings are how i would start getting things altered.  Cardboard with grass clippings or even a few bricks ontop will work fine.  The dirt needs sunblock or it dries out and cannot sustain life.


Investigate which tree species have the greatest drought tolerance and good thick canopies to offer shade below. I dont know offhand.
Psalm 37:16

Offline DonW

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2021, 03:01:50 PM »
The pond behind an artificial dam is now filling and if there is sufficient runoff come spring should fill up. Also an excellent well or two though for practicle purposes in this work I don't see the use for ground water, which I don't suffer a lack of because of the particular geology of the surroundings. What do you say, that it'd be wise to concentrate effort at the pond first rather than creek banks?
For tree choice it's clear from the area that cottonwood and willow are well adapter to conditions here. 

Offline mike_belben

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2021, 03:13:43 PM »
Theres no way i can make that decision for you.  I will say a pond has more surface area to lose water to evaporation than a creek but its pretty hard to cast shade on a substantial sized pond.  


Is there any option to pump pond water for this endeavor?
Psalm 37:16

Offline DonW

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2021, 03:30:18 PM »
Well, this is why I settled on the banks of the creek, it is constant and wet.  

(There are ten or so Mule deer now investigating the pond area as I'm writing I see)

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #11 on: February 17, 2021, 04:34:21 AM »
Was wondering if some perforated piping in the bed of the creak instead of a dam could be used? Screen the intake of the pipe. Survey off an area by looking at the slope of the land, and remember water runs down hill, lay out a network of watering PVC pipes, they don't have to be close, that dry dirt will soak it up laterally and vertically. See what becomes of it in 20 years. Use some mulch like straw, something easy to transport with a SxS or pick up in there, and cheap. Protect any plantings, the mice and voles love straw and leaves for home and tree bark for dinner. ;D Oak would be a good hardwood to plant, it has drought tolerance and can take wet feet to. Maybe some western black cottonwood and basswood near the creek. Black cottonwood smell nice after a rain. ;D Just some ideas. Looks like lots of work. Retired? ;D
“No amount of belief makes something a fact.” James Randi

Offline DonW

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #12 on: February 17, 2021, 12:27:55 PM »
This suggestion of oak has me thinking it could be a possibility, since I like oak. There are no oak on the property now but some nice stands further up though there is a maybe significant difference in elevation, me at 7000/8000 ft and the first closest stand another 700 or 900 feet higher up. 

So far these suggestions and perspectives are helpful and I do appreciate this input. 

I'm not really settled on a term like retired, more a shift in perspective and taking the chance to apply some long sought after ideas. Call it retirement if you want. 

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #13 on: February 17, 2021, 03:04:31 PM »
Your too elevated for cottonwood I guess.
“No amount of belief makes something a fact.” James Randi

Offline Clark

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #14 on: February 17, 2021, 06:37:26 PM »
I worked on the western slope near Montrose one summer. What I recall is that you are correct in starting near water. It’s at a premium everywhere out there. Your elevation and aspect will play a significant factor. 

Years ago the Forest Service was under the impression that areas growing Gamble oak were “under stocked forests” and as such should be planted to pine. The pine grows that low but it never amounts to anything. Very slow growing. 

From what you have described I get the impression you are lower than oak is typically found at. You could get away with planting trees along the creek. I don’t know if you’ll have much luck away from it. A local expert would be your best resource. 

Clark
SAF Certified Forester

Offline DonW

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #15 on: February 17, 2021, 08:48:00 PM »
Who, in general, could you suggest as a good source for localized advise Clark?
Since my aspect generally is north and east it does not seem to get the brunt of sun and dryness as down in the Montrose area which can be more oriented south.

 While water is probably a defining element here the Western Slope has enough and the actual problem is everybody who wants to get there grubby hands on it, from developers on the Front Range to down-river users in Las Vegas, Phoenix and Los Angeles ... And even the latest carpetbagger New York hedge funds buying up land in hopes of future profit from the water rights. Well, people until so far here have always been generous but we live now in exceptional times. 

You're right the pines at this elevation struggle. Even the one planted here at the house getting well water along with the garden is weak enough that the beetle has infested and it is looking pretty poor. 

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #16 on: February 18, 2021, 03:32:56 AM »
Softwoods tend to get stressed in dry conditions unless deeply rooted. Here, we are seeing a lot of balsam fir die in a year of hard drought. They are usually the ones with a lot of but rot. With balsam fir, your trees can look nice in the crown, but when you start cutting for logs you find all the junk trees. :D
“No amount of belief makes something a fact.” James Randi

Offline DonW

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #17 on: February 19, 2021, 09:08:34 PM »
More and more I lean towards #2 at this point and lining the banks of the creek with rubbish from dead standing off the bench and stems from the Russian olive I'd like to rid myself of, keeping the cows back. Maybe at the creek's edge or pond bank a nurse tree would have a chance too.

Offline SwampDonkey

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #18 on: February 20, 2021, 04:31:00 AM »
Just so you know, black cottonwood is not very drought tolerant, if that is your # 2.
“No amount of belief makes something a fact.” James Randi

Offline DonW

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Re: Plant, protect, repair
« Reply #19 on: February 20, 2021, 06:36:47 PM »
 

 A begin from this morning, some dead Cottonwood dropped in and around the creek. With the last Mule deer turning to inspect that work. 


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