The Hugelkultur Sausage

The hugelkultur bed (I’m going to call it ‘the Sausage’ because of its shape), is going well. I’ve written about it here and here.

I’ve been building it up with sticks, raked leaves & twigs, grass clippings and a bit of wood ash from the fire and soaking it all in the liquid from the composting toilet, to help the carbonaceous material break down. It’s 10 metres of extra growing space and I want to use it for the first time this summer:

Today I covered it all in compost. A creeping native groundcover (Hydrocotyle laxiflora—Stinking Pennywort), which was growing there previously is starting to colonise it. That’s good, because it will help bind the whole thing together and won’t interfere with the growth of the plants I put in there:

The Sausage is destined for all my summer curcurbits—cucumber, zucchini and pumpkin and for the first time I’m going to try sowing the seeds direct, instead of growing them in pots for transplanting. I’ve never had a lot of success with transplanting curcurbits, even though I try to do it without disturbing the roots.

I could hand water it by gravity from the tank, but I’m thinking of fixing a length of plastic tube along its length with a hose connector at one end and a series of fine spray heads or drippers at intervals. I’ll be able to connect it to the hose from the tank and water the entire bed in one go.

Even though it’s right beside the main path to the rear of the property, there’s plenty of room for the plants to spread out behind the mound so that the path is kept free.

Just before I plant my seeds, I’ll cover the bed again, this time with my special chook poo compost mixture.

Looking forward to the warmer weather to see how it goes.

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5 Responses to “The Hugelkultur Sausage”

  1. narf77 Says:

    Great minds think alike! I have just been researching this great method of establishing raised beds naturally (learning from nature again…when will it ever cease? 😉 ) and am just about to do this with a huge rotting tree that fell down on our boundary fence with the neighbours place…MOST conveniently inside our veggie garden area. I love following your blog as I learn so much about permaculture in the process. Maybe I should start paying you! We have that stinking pennywort here as well and I just found 150 odd strawberry plants thrown out by some fool at the local tip so that might just be my experiment in growing on a log. Cheers for a fantastic post. I am off to start a 6 metre long, 1 metre high bed of compost with a donation of piles of dry oak leaves, some denuded topsoil and a chicken shed worth of nitrogenous hay…gotta do SOMETHING till the sun shines again 😉

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  2. narf77 Says:

    Have you tried that brown dripper hose (Pope)? Its really great for fruit trees, can be used above the ground (covered with mulch) or below ground and trickles water so it would work with your tank and a tap…a whole lot cheaper and easier than using drippers and risers as its all integrated into 1 brown hose thickness pipe. We used it to irrigate our house in town (left the nongardening daughters there and didn’t want our garden to be brown…sigh…) and it worked a treat.

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    • foodnstuff Says:

      No I haven’t seen the Pope dripper hose. Will seek it out. Thanks for the tip.

      I really did envy you those oak leaves!

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  3. The Snail of Happiness Says:

    They are great for curcurbits – we call ours the ‘rubbish bed’ because it has no soil, just waste products. I hope yours is as successful as ours!

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    • foodnstuff Says:

      I’m glad it has worked for someone else. Rarin’ to get going now. Roll on spring.

      Love your blog and the little knitted snails ‘n’ things.

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