In the comments of my last post about windbreaks, there were a few comments by both Ed and Ron about planting trees which reminded me of something else I've been thinking about.
Last spring and summer I started paying attention to an area in between two wheat fields that's about 10-15 acres in size that seems to be covered with all sorts of "food" trees. I've noticed pecans, walnuts, blackberries, sand plum bushes, plum trees, and honey locust trees all in that small area. For all I know, there could be even more edibles plants that I just don't recognize as being possible food plants. There are also willows which can be used for both medicinal and weaving purposes.
At first, I thought that it was just coincidence that all those trees would be in that relatively small area, but when I started looking around other parts of the farm I didn't notice the same variety of trees growing all together.
This area is a little unusual because it has multiple springs coming out of the rocks along the creek and it has a large spring that trickles out a little bit of water even during the worst droughts (water does help keep trees alive). But it's also unique because it's close to the part of the wheat field where Grandpa and his brothers used to find arrowheads as kids back in the '30's. I've never found anything like arrowheads, although I have found what I think are a few interesting things.
All those separate facts put together make me wonder if those types of trees have always been in this area and have attracted people (explaining the arrowheads, etc.), or did people help propagate those trees by bringing whatever they had gathered to camp near the spring (it's easy to grow a plum or pecan tree from the dropped seeds during processing).
Regardless of how those trees got there, I wonder how much food I could gather in that relatively small area if I put my mind to it?
And, I wonder if it would be easier to plant the same sort of "food forest" as a windbreak instead of messing around with less useful trees like cedars?
|Looking down the creek towards the pond|
|Pecan and honey locust trees|
|Native plum tree|