Free Resources Everywhere!
I never thought the day would come where I’d get genuinely excited about collecting a bunch of rocks and wood chips. But here I am to tell you: the day has come! But seriously? Rocks? Wood chips? Why?
One of permaculture design’s principles is “use renewable resources” (and in addition we can of course also re-purpose resources that otherwise may have been considered waste).
Two of my main goals in the garden for the moment are:
- clearly defining and preparing the different spaces I want to have in the garden (e.g. productive spaces where I grow food vs spaces likes paths and sitting/leisure areas)
- building soil by capturing and bringing in nutrients.
These rocks and wood chips are two natural resources that help me with exactly those things:
The rocks help me clearly define the different spaces in the garden. They’re not only beautiful, but also provide me with some additional natural ‘edges’ in the garden.
Wood chips are essentially a great mulch: they provide shade for the underlying soil, retain water and make sure it won’t evaporate as fast as it otherwise would. Moreover, when they decompose they turn into nutrients that help build the soil underneath it.
One of the best parts of these resources: they’re totally free!
The rocks were collected from a massive piles of stones on the road side. All it took was pulling over, asking a kind old lady if we could take a bunch, and off we went.
The wood chips were given to me by a crew of workers doing maintenance on the trees in the neighborhood…They happened to have the machine to grind the pruned branches into wood chips – super duper FRESH wood chips at that! – and were more than happy to fill a couple of bags for me. (In fact, a few days later they called me again to check if I wanted some more!)
All in al these may seem like small things. But they’re small things that are already starting to make a difference in the garden. Plus, I made some new friends in the process!
Where do you get your natural resources for your garden?
I am Chris, a certified permaculture designer, sustainable development professional and DIYer. Join my mission to go beyond sustainable, one project at a time.
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