As I take my (almost) daily walk to the back, I look around and think how nice everything looks. Everything looks that way because we keep on top of it….Before I go any further, let me explain who “we” are….the boys: Tony and one or two part time workers.
The sun shines, then it rains and you can almost see the grass growing before your eyes. We cut the grass, trim and do herbicide. Yes…..we use herbicide. I always make that horrible face when Tony says it’s time to do it. Once upon a time he told me I could take care of the farm and do what I wanted. I had ideas of laying newspaper, plastic or nets between 3000 coffee plants to stop the weeds. I wanted to try a mixture of Epsom salt and vinegar which is an internet favorite. I needed to be able to locate water tubes which run throughout the farm. And what could I do when grass comes up through the asphalt road? How does it even happen?
Eventually I gave up on my idea of not using herbicide. It marks the edge, keeps the jungle at bay, and keeps our road clean.
We herbicide the edge. Surrounded by a brown border I can look into the jungle beyond. Thirty-six years ago the farm was the jungle. I guess that’s called permaculture. The coffee, bananas and oranges all interspersed in the shaded jungle. I walked some of that jungle, although I don’t know exactly where I was on those walks. Without machete maintenance the paths came and went. Is that how we should’ve done it?
I can just imagine what the place would look like if I had really just used it as a vacation house as I had intended. Maybe I wouldn’t have even found the house! Check out this house in the neighborhood with a small yard in front.
Here’s our house covered with parcha (passion fruit) vines in the back and the front. Imagine weeds covering us up! Ay dios mio!!
We still have plenty of land to explore. Out of 42 acres, our “guesstimate” of what we’ve cleared, planted or built on is about 10-15 acres. What does the rest looks like? I’m not sure. I’d like to take a hike “over the edge”……..but maybe a drone will show me more.