Referring to the pointReturn site sketch above, from the north-western fence in G1 to the eastern in G7, the run of the land, in the direction of the indicated slope is 1763′. [I just measured it off my SketchUp master drawing!] Over this run, the land drops about 8′. Rainwater runoff from the hill in the west arrives at the fence in G1 and races down the slope towards G7.
The big pond in G1 determined its own location. If runoff is diverted to and saved in grid G1, distribution to rest of the site would be assisted by gravity. Given the huge run off, the pond in G1 will overflow. So I planned another pond as shown in G4. About 3 acres were then set aside for growing grains and pulses. Two roads were laid out to run in the direction of the slope. A space was earmarked for a future activity centre in the lower half of G5.
Most of the remaining space is to be covered with trees. The logic behind how they are to be planted is the subject of this article. I will soon explain the planting blocks B1, B2, B3 etc and the 5 roads that run dead east-west separating the blocks.
I first began with the imperative of a diverse stand of trees. There would be a variety of species, standing as mixed as possible. I will choose the species with an eye on utility yes, but also choose many merely for their fragrance and beauty. I will not worry too much about scientific selection for their survival or success; I will leave it to nature to decide what will prosper and what will fail.
The next conviction is that given reasonable species selection and soil, a plant or a tree is nourished by sunlight and moisture. In the next few months, I will be creating a series of contour trenches perpendicular to the direction of the slope to intercept runoff water. That should increase soil moisture. Additionally, there will be a network of piping to facilitate watering during hot seasons.