Tracking Drift Patterns on your Homestead.

One of the very first things any gardener or homesteader should be doing to watching where the winds come from, how they move around your home, yard, barns and of course your garden sites.

Second to this is the water patterns that come with spring run off and or rains.. The way the winds blow and how they move though your yards and gardens will work with the water.

I loved this stunning example of wind I snapped.. the one side had a tree splitting the wind drift and the other did not.. I am willing to bet you can figure out which was which?

Ah, hedge rows.. you have been a blessing for 100’s and 100’s of years.. In Alberta where I was raised you can see the lines of tree’s.. They used mainly Siberian Pea, O I loved to pick those tiny flowers in the spring and suck that bit of sweetness from the very end.

I think I have nibbled on 1000’s of those flowers over the years, when you get further north, spruce becomes the tree of choice and when you move down south, the scrub willow and long winding lanes of native Chokeberries, Saskatoon and Pin Cherries would show themselves.

These were special places to me as a child because they were you hid from the bitter and biting winds, the never-ending blowing wind of the prairie.

I had one of my most magic moments of my life sitting deep under a massive old spruce tree, I had crawled under it for shelter while I was up high on a ridge that over looked a lovely valley up in the Hinton Alberta Area and I watched a nice buck cross into the valley.. I watched until he moved out of site and I was just enjoying being one in that spot..

When he appears up the hill coming right up on the same little trail I had followed down to find this spot. I watched as he walked up and just head on down that trail, I moved as slow as I could, and just reached out with just one arm.. and when he pushed past those spruce tips, he brushed past my finger tips at the same time..

Never should have happened, Never would happen again.. but it was just so perfect in that moment! I have never forgotten it.

When it comes to our gardens, our yards and our homesteads, we can and should use what nature shows us to give a helping hand. Only we want straight lines, cleared open spaces and never ending views..

Nature gives us nook’s and valleys, it gives us wind breaks and ridges, it gives us low spots, damp spots, high and dry spots, it gives us full sun, part shade and full shade.  It gives us hedges that slow the snow and holds it in place to help give us that water we will need to grow and thrive..

It gives us the ground cover to not just create soil but to hold soil in place.. Wind has always been a favorite of mine but I know that Wind is a trickster in many ways..

It loves to play with the trees, and they have it right.. enjoy the winds but sink your roots down deep and you will go far.

I say the same for us.. learn what we have and then figure out how to work with it, and how to use the same tricks as nature does to create your micro climates, your wind breaks.

One of things that I do on the farm is that I have many small garden spots all over the farm yard.. I will just put a garden here and there.. some are only spring gardens, some are full time gardens and some are late season..

The plants need different things at different times and sometimes it just easier to move the seeds then to fight to make it all work in one place..

Interplant with wind in mind..

Your Plants will thank you

Your soil will thank you

Your yields will thank you!

So if you have not already done so.. start tracking where you winds are coming from, how they move around your landscape, and start planning on how to work with them, instead of against them 🙂

Please consider heading on over to the other blogs that are part of the challenge, you can find a link to the main page on the side bar of my website and it will have a full listing of all the bloggers in the challenge.  They have some GREAT posts out this week..

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9 Responses to Tracking Drift Patterns on your Homestead.

  1. Lisa Lynn says:

    What a wonderful memory! We are fortunate to have a windbreak to the west and north of our house. It is always so much calmer around us than anywhere else in the surrounding areas. I should plant gardens in more spots around our property…my main garden is in a low spot that takes forever to warm up in the spring. I need to look around for a better spot for the spring and fall plantings. Great ideas, FarmGal 🙂

    • Thanks Lisa, it was a special moment that’s for sure.. It was unreal to a point of, did that really just happen.. lol A low spot is good for the main summer for holding your rain in but not so great on the outer seasons.. good look on figuring out where to put those spring/fall gardens. Sounds like you have a great wind break.

  2. This is an excellent post. I am going to find myself outside more, watching, studying and paying closer attention. I want to add a few more small gardens and an orchard, so this is great information to have!

    • It is such useful information to have, a garden spot that dries out fast due to winds in the height of summer, often means its one of the first to clear and warm for the early short season spring plantings but you know that you must deeply bed down the summer plantings and make them the kind that grow/flower in the summer but then produce hard from the cooler late summer/fall season right up until hard frost.

      Understanding those patterns go a LONG way to getting the most bang from your buck in the gardens 🙂 Have fun learning your own land! Remember to intermix your plantings in those small gardens because what might have issues in one, can and often times will produce well in another spot.. Its a great way to not have all your eggs in one basket!

  3. Shelley says:

    Beautifully written! My grandparents used Caragana trees around their homestead as wind breaks.

  4. Marla says:

    Hi Valeria,
    I always love your pictures. Some of my fondest memories are too of when I was child setting under a apple tree watching Nature – it is probably the most relaxing and soothing way to calm the soul and mind. Love this article – just reading it helps me feel relaxed.

  5. Nancy W says:

    Wonderfully written post! I miss living on a large tract of land where we would observe nature on a daily basis. I used to love watching the wind blow across the fields and how the grass moved.

  6. onedogrunning says:

    Nice when the snow helps illustrate…

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