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Geoponics

by Lee Pelley

Geoponics

GEOPONICS is a derivative of Land Management.  It involves ways to work within the new environmental restrictions.  It has an anthropocentric (human oriented) focus.

Most of the differences in the GEOPONICS approach to Land Management are pretty simple.  One example:  in planting a stand of trees for future harvest, leaving the branches all the way to the ground on a select few will make the stand more wildlife-friendly, by providing cover.  Such branches can be left on trees well inside the stand, so that the branches will not grow large and make overly knotty wood.  All the rest of the stand can have its branches elevated (trimmed off) to encourage resulting clean logs ("clean" = free of knots.)

Land Management's distinctions from Landscaping

Size

Function      

Geoponics distinction from Land Management

Legal restrictions of land use  (new)

S=Size (SYLVAN)           F=Function  (Forest)                            L=Law (Leef)

The normal way to proceed with managing a piece of land is to take up where your parents left off and continue what they did.  This will not likely work any more.  New environmental rules, greater competition than ever, disease and a thousand other things have changed everything forever.  The environmental rules, harsh as they are, are belated/a patch job on a leaking ship/in many cases, far too late.  It's OUR environment we're talking about--not someone else's.

 Finally, most of them are the LOWEST COMMON DENOMINATOR between extreme views.

 --Has anyone here ever water-skiied?

          Played sports?

          Walked a great distance?  (20 miles or so.)

--It was work, wasn't it?  Sweat, effort, a great deal of time used up for something you were not certain would achieve the results you wanted? 

Work is too often a dirty word.  Why jogging isn't a dirty word is beyond me.

That, also, is Land Management.  And Geoponics.  Major difference is you get to keep the results of what you've done, and the outcome is most likely to be certain and happier.

Also, poverty and learning to enjoy it.  Freedom

NEW as a vastly over-rated word.

 There are usually AT LEAST two ways to do anything:  you've always a choice between time and money.  Either way involves effort.  (Working for the money, or enjoying the work itself.) 

The Greatness of Oregon

 --population density here is extraordinarily low.

 --Oregon is made up of 96,000 square miles          

 --England is 50,930 square miles

 --population OREGON is only 3,421,399 people    

over the state, this averages to 35.6 people/sq. mile

 --population ENGLAND is 49,138,831 people

 over the entire nation, that is 965 people/square mile

 -- Here, in Douglas County, population is 27.3 per square mile

 --Closer to home, Washington state has roughly half the land mass and TWICE as many people.          

--Meantime, there are at least 6 people available for every job you want.

--Think more. Use the brain muscle more than your back.  Remember, there is always more than one way to do anything.  ALWAYS!!!

 Work smarter, not harder.

 When there is SOME knowledge behind your eyes when you look at ANYTHING, you see far more than the easy-eye.  Life is RICH.  Enjoy the wealth around you.


 SPECIAL THINGS about Oregon

 #1.  You (and I) have the potential to demand the retention of open land.

 #2.  Trees grow faster here (PNW) than anywhere else in the world.  Reasons are complex, having to do with soil pH, soil bacteria, temperature, weather, possibly the newness of the mountains.

          Incidentally, the land itself is formed differently here than east of the Rockies: the land here is basically flat, with recently risen mountains throughout.

 East of here, flats in land come from mountain erosion.  (Totally different)

 #3.  Temperature difference between night and day is the big deal here between winter and summer.  (NY as example: begins snowing in September;  stops in May.)

 Between day & night HERE, temperature difference grows in fall.  By winter,

difference is substantial.  (Spring/summer same.)

 #4.  People here care about where they live (priceless)  win/win situation

(Elsewhere, a transient culture dominates.  "Moving on up.")

 #5.  mundane level:  not honking at traffic lights

 KEEP THE LAND OPEN

  Should you choose to leave Oregon, remember to avoid areas that are rated as "fastest-growing."

 A few other things that are different about Oregon:

  --Not everything is necessarily for sale.  (Eastern city to city thing)

 --There is less specialization here than elsewhere, greater diversity
(Nothing like it elsewhere)  (Big bucks in specialization everywhere.)

 HOWEVER, the marketplace accomodates this

  standard market here is cows and trees

--Though Oregon represents only 2% of the nation, it produces well over 20% of the nationís lumber.  Trees grow faster in the Pacific Northwest than any other place in the world.

--Bottom may drop out of cattle market, because of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy.  <<<Serious stuff, that.

 --Hundred-year drought cycle just beginning.

--All of human history to 1800:  1st billion people/130 years later, (1930) 2 billion/30 years later, (1960) 3 billion/15 years later, (1975) 4 billion

--12 years later, (1987, midsummer) 5 billion/9.5 years later, (1997) we hit 6 billion

--In your lifetime, we are bound to reach 12 billion people.

 --1.3 times current population is the increase each year.

--Each week, 2, 397, 192 new people are born (at todayís rate)

--Each month, itís 10,273,680 new people

Surprisingly, there seems to be less biodiversity in VEGETATION here than in NY  (This may very well be because I knew that land better, but I suspect not.) 

NEW YORK  (21)

Maple --at least 4 kinds (soft & hard)

Elm  (slippery, red, white)

Ash

Basswood

Hickory

Hop Hornbeam

Popple

Cherry (Wild Mazzard, pin, black, choke)

Hawthorn

Hemlock

Pines (huge variety)

Beech

Birch

Larch (Hackmatack & tamarisk)

Aspen

Butternut

Walnut (Black)

Elder (Box)

Cedar (Red & White)

Arborvitae

Sassafras

Fir (Balsam) 

OREGON  (15)
Here, diversity of species is surprising low

Ceanothus (usually bush)

Fir (Douglas, Grand, Noble)

Oak (Canyon, Black, White)

Madrone (6 kinds)

Cedar (Port Orford, Incense, Alaska yellow)

Redcedar (Western)     (1 per 20 acres)

Chinkapin

Hemlock

Ash (Oregon)

Maple (Bigleaf, vine maple, etc.)

Cottonwood (Black, white)

Pines (Ponderosa)

Aspen

Alders

Laurel (OR Myrtle)

Cypress (Modoc, Josephine County only)

 NY=dozen species per acre  VS. rainforest, 400/acre

Here, a dozen species or LESS/acre

 Wildlife entire different ball game:  262 native kinds in OR
(greatest variety in nation)

Here, mills here can SPECIALIZE in what they take:  cedar/Doug fir, etc.
(suggest you plant varied stands as protection)

tight bark here in summer to conserve water/sharp needles

trees bud over winter, eliminating possible maple syrup 

DIVERSITY IS EVERYTHING

Basic Questions In Land Management (Any Kind)

These must be asked before projects are developed.

 #1.  How will it affect you and yours?  (At all ages:  children & elderly)

 #2.  How will it affect other people?  (Lawsuits/marketplace)

 #3.  How will it affect animals?  (both domestic and wild.)

 #4.  How will it affect the land?  (both short-term and long-term)

 Next considerations:

 #1.  How much will it cost it time and money to get the project started?

 #2.  Evaluation of the project at 5 years.

 #3.  Evaluation of the project at 10 years.

 #4.  What will you have to pass on?  Will it keep the land open in the future?

Decent, educated guesses are all you get.

Recommend brain-storming with an outside person.

Locate problems.

Locate benefits.

Attack problems all the way through, until solutions are reached.

 Next:  Trees

Back to Intro

Copyright © 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 Lee Pelley

 

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