Introducing the Don Adolfo Project (DAP). Named after the pioneering landowner where the project takes place, the DAP converts former cow pasture into an agroforestry, ecosystem restoration and educational site. Furthermore, this pilot project will develop a model for land development and cooperation between landowner (Don Adolfo) and tenant (me, Sean Dixon-Sullivan), while employing, training and eventually encouraging self-ownership for local campesinos.
First, workers from Contour Lines Corp., including myself and three campesinos from Tatin, installed 1,151 meters of contour lines across the 0.87-hectare (2.15 acres) site. Along the lines we planted Don Adolfo's 200 fruit trees—mango, rambutan, avacado, lemon and orange—and between we've begun planting shorter-term crops, which will eventually include cassava, sweet potato, pineapple and banana. The deal is we can cultivate his land rent-free, harvesting all short-term crops we wish, as long as we keep his fr…
Terraces on Contour at CENIT Arte-Natura Total length: 24m (79ft)
In April of 2017, Sean Dixon-Sullivan built two terraces and a banana circle at CENIT Arte-Natura* in Minca, Colombia. There were several objectives to this contour system: Erosion control - to catch any soil eroding from the construction site on the hill above.Food production - to provide healthy, organic food to the kitchen and to offset food costs.Education - to serve as a demonstration to locals and a subject for permaculture workshops, of which there have been three to date (August 2018).
Construction took two days with one person. On the third day the terraces and banana circle were planted with students from CENIT's first workshop. The process, pictured below, is as follows: First, Sean marked a level line across the hill using an A-level. Then at each marker he excavated a hole using a post-hole digger and inserted stakes of Glericidia sepium (i.e. matarraton, madre de cacao, madera nerga), which resprout t…
The Witherspoon Retreat is a 3.8 acre property nestled upon Cedar Mountain on one of the first mountains ranges of the Appalachians and one of the only mountains in South Carolina.
The property lies on a moderate to steep slope with natural spring emerging from the ground on either property border. The northern half of the property is forested, and a home is built on a terrace a third of the way up the property. The house receives its water from a RAM pump that uses no electricity, and moves water from the western most spring to the faucets in the house.
The back yard has a moderate slope.
The front yard has a very steep slope that causes problems with erosion.
The plan is to use the RAM pumps to move water from the spring into a system of berms built on contour. The water will slowly move downhill throughout the property settling in a series of aquaculture ponds, a bathing pool, livestock troughs, and animal ponds.
Berms along the tree line constructed from soil excavated fro…