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Living Rhythm Farm
Living Rhythm Farm
Last updated:
Hotchkiss, Colorado, US
Climate zone:
Cold Temperate

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Living Rhythm Farm

Living Rhythm Farm

Hotchkiss, US

Amanda Macon April Chase Bruce Woodside Chief Phillip 'Cloudpiler' Landis Denisa Müllerova Eden Gal Elena Parmiggiani Ewelina Bajda Hubert de Kalbermatten Jake Hanson Merry Cox Rae Fuller Roy McNish G Vanessa Monge Augusto Fernandes Vic Gaffney William Kearns Win Almazan

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Project: Living Rhythm Farm

Posted by Aaron Jerad over 10 years ago

Ummm... where to begin, there's so much to do! #1) Make a list...

This past year taught us a lot of lessons about the land and the direction we want to go. There is the continuing process of sorting out previous systems, ones left over from 10-20 years of different peoples' visions and uses of the land.  This site has been used as pasture, orchards put in and taken out, developed for wildlife and intensively gardened and now moving toward a permaculture design.

I think the abundance of irrigation water, fresh from the mountains, makes it easy to forget that we are living in a desert. A lot of the previous owners' planting and species selection was based on the fact that, with water, a lot of things will grow in this climate that just couldn't grow here otherwise. As a result the irrigation system that is currently in place isn't practical and demands a lot of time to manage.

As we move ahead it is clear that in addition to shifting toward extreme drought and cold tolerant plants established with effecient irrigation, we also need to re-design the current irrigation system.

But before we get to that, very soon it will be time to set up the cold frames and plant the winter hardy greens. The challenge with these again will be water. How to harvest snow melt from the roofs, catch it in tanks and deliver it into the growing frames? The irrigation doesn't start running until after the snow melts in May, anything grown before that will have to be on stored water.  Eventually there will be a burried cistern and irrigation lines with frost-proof taps. (the ground freezes down to about 15cm deapth in winter) The interesting thing is that in latitude we are about the same as the border between France and Spain, so the amount of light isn't a problem, just water and protection from cold.

The cold frames will be simple with a second layer of fabric inside, ala Elliot Coleman, once we move past the time of deep frost, we'll move the frames over and start some early summer and long growing season crops.


*set up cold frames and plant with frost loving greens.

*continue work on re-routing the waste irrigation water into the hedge row and wind screen.

*order trees for spring planting. 100 Caragana, 50 Nanking cherry,  25 bur-gamble oaks, 20 evergreens + specialty fruit trees.

*install drip irrigation and plant an evergreen sound and view screen between the drum studio and the neighbors.

*plant trees

*repair old cistern and test the water line

*set up one rain catchment tank for drinking water

*start work on a shade garden and summer hang out area.

*build grape trellis on south side of drum studio for shade

*regular gardening and composting schedule

*plan our summer druming and permaculture weekend workshop.

*and more...

Comments (1)

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Mike Wood
Mike Wood : Where did you find your Caragana?
Posted almost 10 years ago

Report Mike Wood on To do list for spring


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