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5311Natural Farming in a Mediterranean climate

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  • diebrand
    Nov 30, 2005
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      Jean-Claude,

      Sorry, if I misunderstood your previous message or if I did not
      comment on each and every one of your remarks. Right now I'm more
      concerned with finding practical solutions rather than with the
      general idea of it.

      > … so you have lot means of learning about how nature does to
      revegetate the land after the fire bruned the bushes …

      What can be learned here is that the ashes from the fire favoured
      the growth of shrubs (genista, ulex europaeus, cistus, etc.), which
      prevented the trees (oaks, etc.) to grow again and which will
      invariably prepare the ground for the next wildfire in a few years
      time by providing plenty of combustible material.

      > … what is the life cycle of the arbutus ? how old are they? …

      I have no idea. Some are as wide as 10 to 15 meters and must be
      very old.

      > … you don't have to go all or nothing , between the arbutus and
      the oak there is possibly something else in the succession that will
      take over the arbutus and prepare the ground for the oak. …

      We have a mixed culture of arbutus and oaks. Both are ideal for
      this climate since they survive the drought in the summer and grow
      during the wet season. The problem starts when the arbutus isn't
      cut back for a long time because a property has been abandoned.
      Then it will take over and suppress all other vegetation. And I
      don't believe it will prepare the ground for anything but more
      arbutus.

      > … replacement of arbutus ( by the way the fruit are very tasty and
      would like to know if they can reproduce by cutting, …

      Sorry never tried to reproduce them. I have got too many as it is.
      Local farmers use the berries to make a bootlegged brandy, which
      isn't exactly my taste. We make preserves out of it (try
      quince/medronho preserve, one of my very own creations). The wood
      is very dense and ideal for heating.

      > … what about pomegrenate, figs and other mediteranean edible
      plants ( i bet figs thicket don't burn easelly .) …

      Oh, but they do. Except that it is far to dry for figs to
      flourish. Unlike the South of France were I have seen big fig trees
      with a lot of fruits even without irrigation, here they will only
      grow in the most favoured locations were they can get enough water.
      This climate really is very hard to understand for anyone who hasn't
      experience it at first hand.

      Dieter
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