Air Flow: Wind Breaks
A cooling breeze in the summer can be extremely gratifying. A nipping wind in the winter can be your worst enemy. Knowing where these winds will come from and how to work with them is important.
Through observation or research you should determine were the wind typically blows from when the temperatures are at their highest and lowest extremes.
For example, if your winter wind will come from the North, use hedges and trees to block this wind from your structures, animal enclosures, or any other place that needs to be protected.
Just remember to use coniferous, or evergreen plants. It is their leaves and needles that will help block the wind.
If the wind blows from the West when it is hot outside, be sure your home has windows on the West and East ends so that you can let the wind cool your home down – this helps you save energy which will save you money on your utility bill as well.
Every inch of land is a place for water catchment. Whether the soil catches it directly or you harvest it from a solid surface and store or divert the water for whatever use – it is being captured.
The big question is: What are you going to do about it!
If nothing else, just remember that water continues to flow downhill under the surface of the soil. It does not just go a few inches into the ground and stop.
Look for the signs of water running across the surface of the land and think about how you can stop that flow of water so that it has a chance to soak into the soil.
Soil Management: Gardening
Your soil is alive and it needs you to understand that, or you will kill it. I do not mean that the dirt itself breaths, but that it is an ecosystem of life that has a balance that must be observed.
It will repay you in endless dividends if you respect that. Remember that water flows under the surface, and that water will carry with it some of the nutrients of the soil it passes through.
So, try to keep any cultivated gardens up hill. As you dress your sustainable garden with compost and manures these nutrients will flow to the soil that is downhill as well, giving you more bang for the buck.
It would be hard to establish a sustainable permaculture without first understanding how each piece of a puzzle interacts with the rest.
Take the time to get a basic understanding of these interactions before making any decision, but more especially before making any perennial plantings or establishing any buildings.
Doing so will take time now, but pay you back huge dividends in the years to come.