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DESIGN OVERVIEW

Home Garden & additional plantings Energy With field edges optimised for willow planting, and ash pollards providing an additional source of firewood, in combination with long term replacement of leylandii, you should be able to support your family homes with firewood. Duck pond & wetland area Rotational grazing Time is the key factor in terms of compaction & erosion in relation to grazing animals, not quantities of animals. Herds of animals moving through the landscape have done is in large numbers - plants exposure to them is tolerated because they then have time for rapid recovery and growth. Therefore grazing more animals in a smaller area in a rotation that regularly rests an area will increase the quality of your pasture & erosion control. The concentration of animal manure is also an important factor in increasing soil fertility & grass growth. The challenges are however increased animal movement, the relationships between animals e.g. individuals mixing, bullying etc - however if you implemented a rotation plan, it would support you to have better quality land, longer grazing system, less erosion and most importantly, more animals could be supported - as it is not the quantity, it is the time. Your feelings around enclosure will need to be explored. Other systems have used electric fencing successfully also to reduce costs & increase flexibility - however this is your decision & your knowledge of the animals & their fear & feelings around enclosure. Orchard & woodland area An example orchard has been placed in the eastern corner of the field. With wind patterns becoming increasingly varied generally, it would need to be sheltered from all sides. A northern boundary could be planted depending on your grazing rotation plan. An orchard area could provide fruit for the family as well as the animals. If time isnt available for harvest & processing, at worst animals can simply eat fallen fruit. With a path following the eastern boundary, visitors could sit in the orchard in the summer on picnic benches and enjoy being close to animals & being out of the way of people working on the farm! There is also a nice view towards the village. Adjacent to the orchard is a small corner of woodland. This is mainly to increase diversity on the site and has been placed there because there isnt a structure & there are fox dens & animal tracks, so the corner could support wildlife. If it was fenced off there could also be some coppice that could be used to help produce materials for the site, such as fence posts. Where the current bog garden is, is a key point, meaning an area in a valley where water is directed too through the geology. If this area was re-landscaped, and damned east to west, this Access & erosion control would catch & store water (I would also suggest a liner anyhow or clay patted down by pigs over Observing the traffic movements on your site in In terms of electricity, you have abundant roof space for a week or so). This could become a wetland area terms of humans, animals and machinery is very solar panels. As an investment these could provide free for rescued ducks and would increase the diverimportant. Routes should be as quick and easy as electricity for the site, while also generating an income sity of the site, as well as preventing run off. possible in terms of accessing and moving mafrom the feed in tariff. I do not know suppliers localterials. If you are to practice rotational grazing, I ly in this area however do have a friend who is very would recommend creating a track (for example Chicken & Pig Food Forest Forage system confident in this area that could give you some advice. adjacent to Iggles Piggles at present), and up on Please note feed in tariff panels are connected to the to the field, so that animals can be moved into The chickens & pigs are already well placed in grid, which means if there are power cuts you are also their pastures without eroding the soil or creating a cut. A small number of more DIY panels may be approthat they are relatively short distance from the mud bath. This way energy & moral for volunteers priate, for example for the office, which could be off grid main yard and that you do not need to climb & workers is not drained. This could look like a any slopes to visit them daily. The quality of With how much time you all invest into caring for systems and increase your resilience Biogas/ Anearowheel with spokes. their environment can be increased through animals, caring for vegetables or crops would very bic digestion is also a definite option to be explored. skillfull planting. Potential suggestions could likely be too much in terms of energy! However be: over the long term, if there was interest or enthusiasm, very small manageable beds, extremely *Banks below runs - planting comfrey, which close to the kitchens and back or front doors, can be grazed by horses, will prevent erosion planted with leafy greens, could be an excellent & can be chopped (literally ripped off plant) & source of nutrition. Low maintenance greens that fed to animals, including horses. Comfrey is self-sow such as oriental salads, rocket, as well as extremely low maintenance & full of abundant soil covering plants such as nasturtiums, and very minerals. They can also be trampled to no ill hardy spinach and chard could provide optimum effect. nutrition & save money. The front & back home gardens are already beautifully landscaped and planted with low-maintenace evergreen species & bulbs. Gradually over time a diversity of herbs and useful perennials could be integrated, mainly to support bees & other insects, as well as wild birds. Cats & dogs will also self-forage for herbs. Herbs that are not succeeding in the pasture, could compliment feed for example, yarrow. Please see a list in the appendix. Herbs are also incredibly low maintenance & would be attractive to visitors. Yields could also be used to make medicines for the family. If planted up in these areas they would not be overgrazed/ trampled. *Planting within runs - fruiting shrubs, certain legumes & other plants to provide fruit & insects for chickens (see species list. *Planting behind runs - see notes on the swale system above, basically fruits (wild & domestic) & hazels can be planted higher than the runs & fall into the enclosures. They will also increase shelter. Pig Area Pigs are obviously woodland animals. Rotating them within the woodland areas you have now is probably the best way to optimise the maximum number you can have, without impacting the land too much. *Slowly changing the understory - you already have some great trees, ash, oak & field maple for example. Scots pine is also very good for certain birds & I would suggest keeping some for the sake of diversity. Long term tree work however could support an increase in diverse trees. For example fruit & nut species listed in the appendix. *Shelters - outdoor shelters can be created that will enable animals to stay outside, increase stable availability for other animals & reducing work in moving & clearing out - have a look at Sepp Holzers system in Austria that uses earth banks for pigs in even the coldest temperates.

Cow barn & water catchment If the new cow barn was designed with water catchment in mind, a huge amount of rainwater could be harvested. Being higher than other parts of the site means this water could be gravity led to where it is needed. If it was placed adjacent to the fields, depending on your pressure it could also be directed to troughs and so forth.

Swale system A swale is a similar to a ditch except that it doesnt aim to channel water away. It is designed to run on contour and therefore catch and store water, that can be re-infiltrated into the soil and used for vegetation. A swale at the bottom of the field could collect all of the surface flow, preventing erosive influences on the structures & animal habitats below. Swales are planted up to make use of the water. The length of your swale could support a large number of willows, which can on rotation provide indefinite firewood for your family & sanctuary. Salix alba, as pictured, would be your key species, interplanted with these would be other species of willow & other shrubs These would eventually get to a height to replace the windbreak function of the Leylandii. Willows are fantastic bee forage & nesting trees for wildlife, will flourish in your soils and can also provide fodder for grazing animals. The opposite side of the swale can be planted with more diverse food trees, such as fruits and hazels. These will be protected on both sides through the windbreak of the willow & the fencing of the chicken runs. Low-maintenance fruit can simply fall off the tree & down the slope to the chickens & other animals.

Hedges & edges

Depending on your grazing rotation plan, field edges can be planted with fodder species for the animals. This would require an investment in fencing and may need to be done over time. Key species would include: Dogwood, Jacksonia scoparia (You have a large number in your tree pack) reaches about 4 metres, is meant to be relished by horses & cattle. Tagasaste (Chamaecytisus palmensis) or Tree Lucerne is a popular fodder crop, they have a high protein content & are high in vitamin A. They may not tolerate poor drainage so may be a bit of an experiment. Fenced off areas inside the fields could also provide fodder, as well as shelter & privacy for animals. Again this would require an investment in fencing. Fodder can alternatively be cut & carried to stables.

Brook Farm Animal Sanctuary