Sunday, November 7, 2010

Scott - This One Is For You!

A little over a month ago, Scott Pittman, Director of the Permaculture Institute said "I wish there was some way you could get to the other side of the river and take pictures of the whole spread.  As a designer, I am always curious how things are laid out."

Well, the dry spell we have had lowered the Pecos River enough so that I could ford the river and get to the high ground across the river from the farm.  Here is the picture you asked for.  The lower part of Earth Echo Farm is the two fields on the left in the photo.  The telephoto lenses foreshortens the view.  These fields are actually over 2000 feet long.  Note the cattle in the river.  This part of the world you have to fence other peoples cattle out; common sense would say that the owners should fence their cattle in.  The river and the riparian vegetation suffer badly as a result.

The river view of the farm is taken from the south, looking north.  The other end of the farm is the county road.  Below is a picture taken from our entry gate looking down the driveway.  So this is the reverse: the photo is taken from the north, looking south.  It is approximately 1100 feet to the greenhouse.  Note the grapes planted along both sides of the drive.  These are table grapes that are also suitable for raisins.  Spacing on the grapes is calculated to harvest the rainwater from the road for their sustenance.  The cottonwoods in the background are along the acequia.  This upper part of the farm is high desert grassland that will be developed with permaculture contour berms to harvest the rainwater.  This is where we will be planting walnuts, pecans, almonds and pistachios.  Mr. Phiri in "The Man Who Farms Water" says: "The first year you plant the water.  The second year you plant the trees." (Arid Lands Newsletter No. 46, Fall/Winter 1999)

The section of the farm between the two photos, which can't be seen, is about 1500 feet and includes the area where the peach trees and blackberries are planted.  Photos were taken November 1st and 3rd.

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