Where to locate the orchard?: The best ideas and advice

Hello everyone, I’m Álvaro again,

In this article I am going to tell you a little about the odyssey that was finding a good place to locate the garden, which really was not as easy as I thought.

How did I decide to start my garden?

To begin with, I decided to do it in the town, basically because it had more space, the air is purer and when it rains the water is not usually accompanied by all the gases of the Madrid “beret”.

My town is called La Pueblanueva, it is a very nice community next to Talavera de la Reina (Toledo), famous for its people and its festivals, whoever goes there almost always repeats for one thing or another.

I am lucky that my family has a farm there, inherited from my paternal grandfather, who in the 1960s housed chickens and currently pigs. Surely some of you have noticed the silos of feed that are in the background of many of the channel videos. Cristian lives on the farm with his mother Elena and his father Pedro, they have been a constant support during this project and without them the truth would not have been the same result, if you have not seen the role they play in the garden, well you are taking time to click on: TV

In short, having plenty of space there, I decided to take advantage of it to give the land a very profitable use, the problem was to find the most suitable place to put a vegetable garden.

How and where to locate the garden?

Based on the neighborhood logic, a garden needs light and water, so the space could not have walls or any element that would take away hours of light for cultivation.

The soil is also important, historically the orchards were cultivated near the fertile plains of the rivers, those silty soils (of fine materials) and full of nutrients are just what an orchard needs so that its products grow wild and free, in my case, and going back to an edaphology work I did about 5 years ago, the soils in the area are very limestone and the upper layer has little organic matter, so they are not excellent soils to put a vegetable garden, but they are acceptable, like this that forward.

At first, I thought of an old chicken coop that had brick walls, the walls would have been great for me to paint them with some artist friends and give the orchard a cool urban garden vibe that is what is going on now, but because the proximity between the walls produced a lot of shading of the ground, so I discarded it.

First location for the orchard, ruled out by shading.

Irrigation planning

Orchards also need water, that is why irrigation must be planned, the main water intake should be relatively close to the first ridge so that the installation of irrigation is as inexpensive as possible and future breakdowns are avoided due to the cumbersomeness of the material used in a garden. great facility.

I thought of another space just behind the compound feed mill, with walls that didn’t give as much shade and that could give the orchard that cool urban garden vibe that is what is going on now, but the distance with the water intakes and the beating that it had to give me by clearing all the weeds that there were made me change my mind, so I discarded it.

Second location to put the orchard, discarded by the distance to the water intakes.


Finally, I only had a space without walls where I could locate the garden, and about 100 meters from a water intake, but years ago it had been used as a dump and the ground was full of glass, weeds, etc…

Location chosen to plant the garden

What problems do we find?

Not by a long shot was that going to hold us back and Elena and I by hand with the help of Cristian with the tractor cleaned the surface as best we could, you can see it in the following video:

Once we already had a more or less decent surface to begin with, we were faced with the problem that this land had never been worked, had never housed any crop, as far as I know, let’s go…

A soil that is not tilled is generally hard, the drought suffered by the peoples of La Mancha from January to April-May approximately does not help to work the soil either, and as you know, in order to plant an orchard, it is necessary that the land be tilled so that the The soil breathes, the porosity is increased (the ground can retain more water by being looser, etc.) and basically it is not hard so that something can be planted in it.

For this reason, we called a colleague so that his cultivator could pass through the land, the surface of the orchard was going to be about 36 m 2 and many people have told me that because of this detail the project already loses its «urban» character, but I you are going to forgive me for not tilling by hand with a 36 m 2 hoe, I suppose it would have taken me about 20 hours and it would not have given the same result as the cultivator because in Agrónomos, and much to my regret, there are still no classes hoe practices.

And after that favor I already had a space to start, a place to locate the orchard. I know that it is not a very urban orchard because it was worked with machinery and it does not have that urban garden guaper touch that is what is popular now, but it has what I need and that is why I did not rule it out.

All the best

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