Having completed the Dream and Observe chapter, we move on to the next phase. The following first three steps to create a mini forest are part of a chapter entitled: Planeia e Colete. After planning the forest, the researchers suggest scheduling irrigation.
In the first hot and dry months – up to two, three years – watering is necessary to increase the rate of survival and growth of plants, especially in Mediterranean climates. With irrigation, we promote soil moisture and therefore greater plant root growth, an increase in the number of bacteria, fungi and their respective connectivity in the soil. The target it is not to create one mini forest depends on high humidity levels in dry months. We want to evolve into a climate-adapted system drift and future. We intend to accelerate ecological succession in the first years, the most critical after planting, to a situation where the crown and root network regulates the hydrological cycle autonomously. Therefore, it is important to plan adequate irrigation in terms of frequency and abundance of water, perspective the end of you.
We want to ensure even watering. When installing an irrigation system, it is important to consider the water range of the sprinklers and the growth of the plant itself, which will create obstacles to the dispersion of water. We want to maximize irrigation efficiency by making water available only to the roots of the plants we choose. Depending on the soil and the average depth of the rhizosphere of our plants, it is expected that the growth in depth will be proportional to its height. Thus, we want to evolve from short and very frequent watering to long and sporadic watering, so that the water penetrates into the lower layers of the soil. If planting is done in the first months of the year, the watering schedule can be:
- Water for 30 minutes, on alternate days, during the first month.
- Water for 40 minutes every three days between the second and sixth months.
- Water 60 minutes every five days from the seventh month onwards.
- Stop watering after two years.
This suggestion is highly dependent on meteorological conditions (temperature, precipitation and wind). The best indicators are soil moisture at various depths and plant health (green). It is important that the soil is not always too wet, much less soggy – plants can die due to lack of air in the soil or the appearance of harmful fungi.
- Irrigation system (ideally with a sprinkler).
- Developer (optional);
Caution! Consider purchasing a scheduler to install in your irrigation system and guarantee automatic watering during the summer and school breaks.
,This guide was promoted by ONGD VIDA, in the framework of the project “1Planet4All Youth Empowerment, Living EU Values, Tackling Climate Change” funded by the European Union (DEAR Programme) and Camões, IP Facilitated by 2adapt, in collaboration with Laboratório Vivo para The Sustainability (FCUL), HortaFCUL, Alfredo dos Reis Silveira High School, Student Military Institute, URBEM, TOMA