When I observe where and how Paw Paw trees thrive, I see some of the same natural patterns over and over again. They like rich soil, lots of mulch and being next to moister source. Paw Paw trees are mostly found in nature, on the high banks of creeks and rivers or next to low spots in the woods. Of course the creeks and rivers have water, but low spots hold on the water as well. How can we design the paw paw needs into a planting method. After a lot of thought, a fertility bed or a banana circle.
If you dig a bed that meets your area, shape I don’t think has to be a circle. Dig the bed 2 feet in depth and pile the soil you dug out and ring the bed to make a berm of soft soil. Plant your paw paw trees in the berm. Fill the fertility bed with all manners of organic matter. Lots of wood, brush, hay, leaves, grass clippings, etc. Fill up the bed to the top of the berm with all the organic material. I would say 70% woody material and only 30% green material will give you a great fungal growing medium for the Paw Paw trees.
This agro forestry video show what happens when farmers work with nature. Chop and drop is one of the main techniques on this farm for building soil. They are taking chop and drop to a whole new level. The soil and soil structure is beyond healthy alive soil. What is nice is this farm understands that they have to work with nature, but that the system needs to profitable at the same time. They are proving that a natural designed farm can be crazy profitable.
There is a quote from this video that gives me hope for farming in the future. The landowner says the soil is no good, then the system designer says”there is no bad soil”. This is because we as humans have the capacity to make our garden, farm and environment a better place.
So if you are wanting to start a permaculture farm I would watch this video several times. You will see how to build an amazing permaculture system. This farm is feeding the soil life at a dramatic level. Besides the tree systems, they are growing tons of food crops on raised beds with the tree system protecting the crop production.