Thursday, March 19, 2009

Border Order

My very first blog (I think) was about a big new border at my new home. I had planted it in lines, one metre apart, basically as plants came out of the back of the van. I’ve moved plants around every year since, in particular to break up the obvious lines of the same thing, but I have kept the basic idea of the lines. It is only in the early spring that it is obvious that things are in lines – the rest of the year everything blurs in together.

Now, some three years later, the rows are still there, and I realise just how practical they are, but also a very good research and documentation tool. They make weed control easier, which is a great relief – you can hoe or spray off whatever comes up between the rows – allowing for some self-seeding and spreading.

In terms of documentation, the lines make for very easy recording – simply number each row with a low profile numbered peg, and then stretch a tape measure from the fence at the rear to note where everything is. The results can then be recorded on an Excel spreadsheet. In theory I’m going to redo this every year – in fact, this year, it didn’t take very long at all. Anything which self-seeds or spreads into the areas betweent the rows can be allowed to do so and recorded – a useful measure of spreading ability. I might also start planting some plugs of certain species as well in the gaps.

So, here is the ‘plan’ of a border which is still very much in the process of development.
The numbers along the top are metres from the fence at the rear (which is the left), indicated by the numbers of the rows, which also represent the number of metres from the other end (at the bottom). You can see in more detail by toggling the little rectangle symbol in the top right hand corner of the Scribd window.

I hope this makes sense! It took me a whole evening to work out how to turn an Excel file into something I could blog.

Big Border Data 2 Big Border Data 2 noelk57

Big Border Data 1 Big Border Data 1 noelk57


EB said...

Fascinating. I was sure you were going to go on to say how much you regretted the lines. In a way "drifts" are also lines, although people think of them so differently.

Amalia Roredo said...

How clever!! And inspiring... I am going to do exactly the same with the trail with natives. It is going to be so interesting to know which species and in what quantity spread . Keep us posted about it!!