A co-worker just introduced me to the idea of hugelkultur, which I gather is intentionally burying pieces of rotting wood to build better soil, then planting on top of it to get the benefits of better soil. I am wondering if there might be a way to incorporate this with a farmbot from the start. I am imagining setting the device up , rather than over a raised bed, on extendable posts incorporating some ratcheting mechanism–perhaps like some patio umbrellas so that it can be raised or lowered as the wood rots and changes shape, thus keeping the distance to the ground surface constant. I realize a jack might be needed too…
It would be really easy if you simply dig out the ground for your hugelkultur making sure to use at least a little worm casting and biodynamic compost from top to bottom. I know that its typically a “mound” garden but it works just as good albeit its harder work.
you’re right the wood will rot but you can just keep adding compost
Perhaps I am understanding the concept wrong. It seems to me that in almost pure sand like I have here in Florida that eventually any nutrients a dead tree might have in them would be used up. Perhaps this doesn’t actually happen though, or the length of time it takes is longer than the expected life of the gardening project…
It’s not just the tree which adds carbon but other inputs. Check out permies.com for more discussion.
Also, a main benefit is the water retention. It holds it like a sponge, which definitely helps in the Florida sand!
You’re right is it subtropical? Subtropical hugelkultur should be hardwood i believe; yeah you can try it in the tropics but they last a couple years instead of becoming a foundation that lasts 8+ years