Thursday, June 28, 2012

Hugelkultur mounds

The perfect way to fertilize a tree or bush is a hugelkultur mound.  This will provide food for years with only a little effort  in the beginning.  It retains water so you don't need to provide supplemental, just rain water should do.  It gets nice and warm so that if you are planting trees or bushes that should be in a warmer climate, they have a much better chance of surviving.
 So what is a hugelkultur mound, now that I know I want one?  Basically it is a pile of rooting wood around your tree or bush that is covered with dirt.  It rots and breaks down just like a compost pile which provides nutrients, the spongy water retaining texture and the heating up.
It is very easy to set one up.  When I planted the bush here in the picture, I just set it up around the planting.   I started out by digging an extra wide hole with the deep spot in the deep spot in the middle for the bush to
go.  I put a handful of leaves into the hole and put the bush on top of that.  Then I placed four large logs each on one side of the bush in the hole.  Then I filled in the spaces with large and then small sticks trying to fill in most of the gaps.  Over the top of that, I put a couple handfuls of leaves over all the wood around the base of the plant.  Cover the leaves with the dirt you dug out of the hole.  I did a lot of stomping on the dirt all around the plant because I'm sure that it is going to pack down at some
point.  I did water it some, but it is supposed to rain tomorrow, so I didn't go too crazy.  I assume that when it rains, it will all fall in and I will have to top it off.  Either way, this bush should do fantastic as soon as it settles in. The logs I used were already started rotting, so I don't think it will be long before that bush can begin to benefit from it.


  1. It was intriguing reading about what this mound is and how it benefits nearby trees and bushes. So on top of fertilizing, it also helps channel rain water?

  2. As the woods rots, it becomes very porous and soaks up a lot of water. If you have ever picked up a rotten log you know that when you grab it or squeeze it you can feel the water come out like when you squeeze a sponge. When you put this rotten wet log around your plants, all this water is available to them.