Istituto italiano di permacultura
Istituto italiano di permacultura
Details
Commenced:
01/03/2010
Submitted:
03/02/2011
Last updated:
07/10/2015
Location:
Loc.Gambaldo,via Torino, Scagnello (CN), IT
Website:
www.permaculturaitalia.com
Climate zone:
Alpine





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Back to Istituto italiano di permacultura

I.I.P. demonstration site design

Project: Istituto italiano di permacultura

Posted by Pietro Zucchetti over 8 years ago

The design of I.I.P.,at the rainbow tree farm, which it will be my home and a permaculture centre. Where I will experiment with my family permaculture in action,organising permaculture design courses and various educational activities. But also helping th

View of Scagnello village where this project is taking place.

 

Keyline scale of permanence

Yeomans Keyline planning and scale of permanence:

CLIMATE

LANDSHAPE

WATER

ROADS

TREES: PLANT SYSTEMS,MICROCLIMATE

BUILDINGS

SUBDIVISION

SOIL

 

I am using the scale of permanence also for the site survey

Climate

Location - localita': Scagnello,Mondovi',Cuneo,Piemonte,Italy.

Altitude - Altitudine  734 m

Rainfall - Precipitazione  700 mm circa (2007)

Temperature - Temperatura min. -5 C  max.+35 C (annual) (annuale)

Climate change - Cambiamento climatico (Data 1961-2007) : +2.5oC  winter mean - media invernale

+1oC  summer mean - media estiva

Winds - Venti : Foehn (Warm,dry) (caldi,asciutti) - strong winds - venti forti
Number of days of Foehn - Giorni di foehn (2000-2007) : 48-76
western alps protect the site from atlantic weather,alpi occidentali proteggono l'area
da perturbazioni atlantiche.
Prevail winds - venti prevalenti: SW 
Maximum wind speed - Raffica massima : 16.4 m/sec. (9/11/07)

Snow fall - Precipitazioni nevose (2006-07): 0.50 cm max. (Dec.-Mar.) (Dic.-Mar.)
Frost - Gelate: April - Aprile (Temp.min. -3) 2.8 days average - 2.8 giorni media
Drought - siccita': Apr. to May. strong (forte) - Feb. to May and June to July medium (media)
N. of storms with radar - eventi temporaleschi con radar: 19 (2004);21 (2005); 25 (2006);33 (2007)

 

Landshape


Altitude - Altitudine :MAX. 734 m   MIN. 700 m

Facing - esposizione: West facing - Ovest

Slope - Pendenza: Upper part 30 degrees (30gradi) or 56.4% ;
Lower part 20 degrees (20 gradi) or 36.4%

Intense soil erosion starting at 650 m altitude below the site.
Area ad attivita' torrentizia intensa a 650 m sotto alla proprieta' interessata con ingente
trasporto solido e locali fenomeni di  erosione spondale.Possibile innesco di dissesti
superficiali e di quelli profondi per erosione al piede.

Some sort of terraces present,un tipo di terrazzamento presente.

Water - Acqua: gravity feed possible,movimento delle acque per gravita' possibile.
No sources of water or wells present,nessuna sorgente d'acqua  o pozzo presenti.

Definition of the site - definizione della proprieta': mix colture with rural building,
unico appezzamento di terreno a  varia coltura con entrostante fabbricato di tipo rurale.
N.398 Rural building - fabbricato rurale.
N.270 Grazing land - Pascolo mq 1101
N.322 Grazing land - Pascolo mq 2620
N.35 Arable land - Seminativo mq 5990

Above: The boundaries of the project

Boundaries: The property is on the edge of a woodland of mix broadleaf trees (Oaks,sweet chestnuts,cherries,ash,beech).The interactions will be with a stable ecosystem rich in wildlife like wildboars,roebucks,chamoise,foxes,dormice,badgers,cranes,heron,jay,nutcracker,

buzzard,pheasant,kingfisher,various birds,alpine salamander,grasshoppers,snails,various insects.

Hazards: Fire risk

heavy storms

Lightening

heavy snow

Frost

Land slides

Resources: Sunlight

Off-site: Markets in Mondovi' (twice a week)

Truffle market during winter time only

No public transports

Special areas: National park 30km distance

Ski resorts 15km distance

Archeological sites: Celtic monolites and stone circles

Historical churches,castles,towers,walls etc.

 

Above: A topographic map of the area. Highlighted is the project boundary.


Water

Sources - sorgenti: Rain water;Acqua piovana
Old closed  well outside boundaries;vecchio pozzo fuori proprieta'

Needs - Bisogni:          Irrigation (irrigazione)
Domestic (Uso domestico)
Animals (Animali)
Acquaculture (Acquacultura)
Fire control (Anti-incendio)
Sewage  (Smaltimento acque sporche)
Rain water harvest (Raccolta acqua piovana)
Drinking (Acqua potabile)

Annual rainfall - Piovosita' annua: 700 mm

Roads

Above: The road to the site


Main road with tarmac on the top of the property at 300 m circa no much traffic,
clean from snow by the council in winter,potential erosion but monitored by local
authorities,good maintenance because it is the only road,overall good condition,
big carpark on the road at 50m from the property.

Italian: Strada provinciale asfaltata in cima alla proprieta' a 300 m di distanza,non e' molto
trafficata,viene spalata dalla provincia in caso di neve,strada in buone condizioni,
e' la sola strada provinciale che passa per la proprieta',sulla strada a 50 m dalla proprieta'
si trova un parcheggio.

Two main paths to reach the property the first is no steep but the second it is steep
in the second half of the path,both are with big stones and partially covered with grass.
The lenght of the first path is around 200m and the second 100m circa.The paths are
used very rarely by a tractor and few local farmers.The property it is a share property
between all neighbours,so any work must be approved by all of them.


Italian: Ci sono due strade non asfaltate per arrivare alla proprieta',la prima non e' molto ripida
ma la seconda lo e' dalla seconda meta',tutte e due hanno grandi pietre parzialmente
coperte da una copertura d'erba.La lunghezza della prima e' di circa 200m e la seconda
e' di circa 100m. Le strade sono raramente usate da contadini locali in alcune occasioni
come la raccolta delle castagne.La proprieta' delle strade e' privata ma interpoderale.

Trees

Above: Trees for reforestation and hedges


Trees present - alberi presenti: Walnut (2),Pear (1),Beech(3),Sweet chestnut (5),
Cherry tree (2),italian oak (5).
Noce(2),Pero(1),Faggio(3),Castagno(5),ciliegio(2),Quercia(5).

Shrub layer - Cespugli : hazel (5),Blackberry (10),Bramble (10),Bay leaf (1)
Nocciolo(5),More(10),Rovi(10),Alloro(1).

Herbaceous layer - Erbe: Nettles,white clover,red clover.Ortiche,trifoglio bianco e rosso.

Fungi - Funghi: Porcini mashroom,field mashroom,black truffles.
Porcini,funghi di campo,tartufo nero.

Apotential strip forest is emerging in the middle of the property on the upper slope.
Una potenziale area da adibire a foresta a striscia e' presente nel centro della proprieta'
sul pendio superiore.

Buildings

 

Subdivisions

No subdivision present - nessuna suddivisione presente

 

Soil

Above: One of the many soil samples taken around the property

PH IN WATER 5.5 (0-20CM)-6.6 (20-60CM)-6.4 (60-80CM)

SILTY CLAY LOAM: COARSE SAND 22% (0-20CM)
SABBIA GROSSOLANA 22% (0-20CM)
FINE SAND 30.1% (0-22CM)
SABBIA FINE 30.1% (0-22CM)
COARSE SILT 18.2% (0-22CM)
LIMO GROSSOLANO 18.2% (0-20CM)
FINE SILT 17.8% (0-20CM)
LIMO FINE 17.8% (0-20CM)
CLAY 12% (0-20CM)

ARGILLA 12% (0-20CM)
ORGANIC MATTER 1.64 (0-20CM)
SOSTANZA ORGANICA 1.64 (0-20CM)

EXCESS OF Mg BECAUSE SUBSOIL RICH IN "GREEN STONES".
ABSENCE OF CaCO3,THE SOIL IS NOT CALCAREOUS,LOW IN Ca.
GOOD OXIGENATION,GOOD DRAINAGE.
DEPTH OF THE SOIL 40CM AVERAGE. SHALLOW SOIL IS AT RISK
OF SEASONAL DROUGHT. WATER TABLE IS VERY DEEP.

 

Land History - Storia del terreno

 

Population of Scagnello Town - Popolazione del comune di Scagnello

year/

population/

difference/

1753

900

------

1861

538

-362

1901

542

+4

1921

605

+23

1936

521

-84

1951

449

-72

1992

219

-230

1997

221

+3

2002

207

-14

 

 

Meaning of the name of the town - Toponimo: Seat or small chair (scagno); Sedile (scagno).

 

It seems that ancient population use this area as a stop during their travels.

Sembrerebbe che le popolazioni antiche usavano quest'area come sosta durante i loro viaggi.

 

It seems inhabited since 2000 b.c. when the Celts arrived in this area from France.

Sembrerebbe abitato fin dal 2000 a.c. quando i celti arrivarono in quest'area dalla Francia.

 

The castle was built between the 800 - 1000 A.D. but during the roman age was a fortified town.

Il castello si pens sia stato costruito tra l'800 ed il 1000 d.c.

 

characteristics - caratteristiche: clean air,calm environment,good flora and fauna.

aria pulita,ambiente calmo,flora e fauna buone.

 

Ideal for new born babies,elderly,people with heart problems,asthmatic people and due to a very dry climate for people with rheumatic conditions.

Ideale per neonati,anziani,malati di cuore,asmatici e perche' il clima e' molto secco per persone che soffrono di malattie reumatiche.

 

Beautiful view,it is possible to see,during bright days,the Monviso mountain.

Ha una bellissima vista e durante giornate di sole e' possibile vedere il Monviso.

 

A lots of chapels and a big church are present enriching the cultural and artistic aspect of the town.

E' ricco di piccole cappelle ecclesiastiche ed una grande chiesa che arricchiscono il patrimonio culturale ed artistico del paese.

 

Analysis

This is an interview that I carried out with a group of 20 people (local authority rapresentatives,local farmers,children,friends living in the area,neighbours)

Above is the questionaire I have done with my family and friends

Above: The analysis of the possible systems and components of the project

 

 

PMI FOREST GARDEN

 

Plus

Minus

Interesting

Stable ecosystem

Pruning (formative)

Plant guilds

Ground stabilization

Harvesting

Soil improvement

Very productive

Time to establish

Drought resistence

Nice place

Nutrient requirements

Children play

More biodiversity

 

Showing different use of land

It uses human waste

 

Edible ecosystem

Wind,fire break

 

Productivity

Diversity of yields

 

Labour no-intensive

Soil amelioration

 

Permanence

Reduce run-off

 

 

Reforestation

 

 

Increase yields

 

 

Educational

 

 

Reduce maintenance

 

 

Less watering

 

 

More fertility

 

 

Spiritual place

 

 

 

Forest garden nutrient budget

This budget* is only to ensure sustainability in nutrients through a rough balancing of demand and supply. Note that this nutrient budget is for fully grown trees and fruit bushes,the requirements may not reach these levels for ten or fifteen years.

 

Trees

Number

Nitrogen (N) Kg.

Potassium (P) Kg.

Apples

15

3.39

4.25

Peaches

30

5.5

6.85

Plums,Damsons,Gages

28

7.6

9.5

Cherries

2

0.452

0.565

Pears

3

1.2

1.5

Alders

14

1.4

2.1

Fruit bushes

150

3.8

4.71

Tot.

242

23.342

29.475

Compost needed^ (annually)

 

1500kg.

 

Wood ashes (annually)

 

 

30kg.

Human urine(annually)

 

 

2 pees a day

 

*Annul calculations based on the Agroforestry research trust in U.K.- Book:Creating a forest garden by Martin Crawford

 

^Micronutrients,humic acid,micro fauna and flora are present in the compost.

 

Additional sources of nitrogen are present in form of nitrogen fixing plants (eg. Alders,eleagnus spp.,salt bushes etc.) and annual leaf litter.

 

 

 

 Design

 

Above:This is the first masterplan that came up from the process I have done until now

 Below: The elevation of the project,showing plants relationship in the forest garden

Above: This is the grading plan showing the elevation and the intended earthworks with ponds acting as reservoirs and a bench terrace on contour with swales.

 

Above: This is the incremental plan after the design support tutorial with Martin Crawford

 

Above it is an incremental design of a keyline system designed by Ken Yeomans (from Australia) as part of a design support tutorial . Below there is the overlay of my grading plan and the keyline design of Ken Yeomans. This overlay show the change to the initial idea to use ponds as reservoir. Instead a keyline design to catch the run off water with feeder channels and a small dam came up as best solution on paper. During the implementation of the keyline system it is possible that the design it will need some further twickening.

 

Above: Dam site as individuated with Ken Yeomans

 

Questions part of the Design Support Tutorial with K. Yeomans

1). What is the minimum indicative excavation depth to have a functioning dam with healthy water? In case I encounter rocks during the excavation.

 

I haven’t designed any dams less than 1.8 metres deep that I can remember. There is no minimum depth but why go shallow unless you have to? If site conditions force you to make it shallower, you are still doing the best you can with that with which you have to work.

 

If you encounter rock, it may function as a constraint in several ways. It may reduce available earth with which to build the wall and may also provide a surface along which water could escape from the dam.

 

2). What should be the height of the dam wall?

 

The plan I’ve sent has the same vertical and horizontal scales, which are the same as you set for your plan. (I used your scale to set the distance units.)

The height (vertical) of the inside batter of the dam wall is 3 metres.

The height of a dam wall is normally measured vertically up from the outside toe of the wall to the crest. In your dam, this height is about 5 metres (vertical). However the base of the excavation area of the dam is 2 metres higher than the elevation of the outside toe.

The wall has a freeboard of half a metre.

 

3). Does the dam need a spillway?

 

Yes, the dam does need a spillway. The southern side apparently would be preferable. It should be at least 1.2 m wide. Sometimes a wider spillway may be easier to build with the equipment on hand. The bed of the spillway will be half a meter below the crest height. That is the design crest height after wall settlement.

 

4). Does the dam need a lock pipe to keep the water healthy, to empty the dam from time to time and for maintenance? I understand is a very small dam (pond?).

 

Yes. For a small dam in your situation I recommend consideration of a 100 mm diameter PVC Lockpipe. PVC valves are relatively inexpensive for that size of pipe.

However, you must make sure the pipe you use will withstand the cold. I saw a lot of snow in the Google image.

The baffle plates can be made from a sheet of PVC. All you need to do is drill a 100mm hole (plus clearance) through each sheet. Put the pipe through the holes and use pipe clamp straps or maybe glue to hold them in place and seal the gaps with something like silicon or more glue (solvent cement). The pipe should be positioned horizontally under the wall and come out through the southern side of the dam at the location where the outside toe and natural surface is the same as the intended depth of excavation.

Use the Lockpipe to stop water flowing through the spillway for extended periods of time needlessly. You don’t want a sloppy muddy spillway.

 

 

5). Do you think a swale system uphill as I designed can be a good idea to slow down soil erosion and to sink more water into the soil?

 

Swales are not part of Keyline. But you can make your feeder channels into a type of swale if you want to and have them emptying into the dam. The problem with swales is similar to that of contour banks. They usually overflow sometime and when this occurs the concentration of flow that occurs at the outlet often causes wash, just like with some soil conservation banks.

You can absorb more water by loosening the soil, especially when ripping on the Keyline pattern. This has the added benefit that you won’t have any unnatural concentrations of flow high in the landscape, which is what all contour or graded banks and swales will cause.

 

6). Can you tell me an aprox. size of the diversion channel? I am thinking 1m wide and 0.5m depth.

 

If you mean a base width of 1 m and a bank height above channel bed of 0.5 m than that sounds ok, although the cross section of the channel can get smaller towards the up stream end. Please construct so as to allow for settlement of the bank.

I suggest you use a 1 in 300 grade and adjust the grade as necessary to fit your landscape. Keep inside your boundary fence.

 

7). What kind of design for the feeder channels, with angled blade, rotary channel digger or hillside irrigation channel design?

 

In steep country, like you have, the shape of the channel is usually controlled by the size of the equipment being used to make the channel. Whatever builds the dam often makes the channels. The hill side irrigation channel profile is limited to 1.2 m maximum at natural surface so people can step cross the channel. Also for a hill side irrigation channel excavated earth is not to be left as a bank on the lower side or it would wash away during irrigation.

Feeder channels don’t have these limitations, so a wider channel with a raised earth bank is ok. There are photos and diagrams in the book of feeder channels. Your channel will only be about 70 metres long and you’ve only got a small catchment.

Consider the maximum amount of rainfall that you could get in about 10 minutes. The channel at 1 in 300 will flow slower than walking speed, probably between 0.5 m and 1 m per second; so just make sure your cross section will carry the flow.

 

Your land may be too steep to use a rotary channel digger especially with accuracy, I can’t say for sure. If you find you can use a rotary channel digger for the feeder channel, set it up so that the excavated material is placed on the lower side of the channel, it will then be forming a bank for the channel, which will increase the capacity of the channel.

 

Below: This is the final master plan after several corrections over time

 

Implementation

 

Implementation plan – 10/12/2010

Clearing the site

 Existing tree crown cleaning

Soil improvement (Organic matter + green manure)

Deer Fence

Dam + swales + diversion channels for water harvesting

Well construction

Paths

Planting Forest Garden

Planting vineyard

Planting hedge

Planting oak woodland

Building refurbishment

Introduction of chickens with chicken tractor

After forest garden and vineyard are established introduction of 150 free range guinea fowls in the forest garden.

 

 

 

 

 

Trying to improve the soil with organic materials and preparing the surface of the soil with the "erpice snodato" for sowing pasture plants like Festucas and white clover. April 2010

Above: July 2010,cutting the grasses sowed in April 2010

 

 

The rainbow tree-costing

 

Element

Price (euros)

12000m2 land with house

30,000

Earthship refurbishment

30,000

Deer fence

1,200

Forest garden

2,500

Earthworks

1,000

Vineyard

1,500

Tools (varies)

500

Polytunnel

1,400

Yurt + decking

2,400

Seeds

250

Tot.

70,750

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clearing the path behind the house. July 2010

 

 

 

 

Unloading local chestnut pales for the deer fence with Annibale, which it allow us to plant a forest garden. August 2010

 

 

 

 

 

Fencing uphill on undulating land is the most difficult task!!!!

 

 

 

 

 

Finally, the deer gate is up!!! September 2010

 

Maintenance plan – 15/12/2010

 

Jan.

 

Grape pruning and training

 

Formative pruning of fruit trees and woodland trees

 

Tight up of fruit trees if necessary

 

Formative pruning of fruit bushes

 

Feb.

 

Continuing with pruning

 

Planting suitable trees

 

Beating up

 

Mar.

 

Continuing with planting

 

Mulching

 

Sowing indoor veg.

 

Apr.

 

Checking for frost and hail

 

Protect grape if necessary

 

More sowing indoor

 

More mulching

 

 

Mag.

 

Check for flowering start

 

Protect grape if necessary

 

Train grapes on Pergolas

 

More veg. Sowing

 

Veg.Planting

 

Jun.

 

Start to harvest first veg.

 

More Planting

 

More Sowing

 

Check for first fruits of the forest garden

 

Jul.

 

1st Grape harvest

 

Fruit harvest from forest garden

 

More sowing outdoor

 

Harvest in the forest garden

 

Irrigation if strictly necessary

 

Pruning prunus specie

 

Aug.

 

Irrigation if strictly necessary

 

More sowing outdoor

 

More planting

 

Forest garden harvest

 

Pruning “Prunus” specie

 

Sept.

 

Planting indoor and outdoor winter salads

 

2nd Grape harvest

 

 

Comments (2)

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Elena Parmiggiani
Elena Parmiggiani : really good details, thanks for sharing!
Posted over 8 years ago

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Farida ALLUCH
Farida ALLUCH : Thanks for sharing this great and wel deatailed experience.
Posted about 8 years ago

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