After many years saving up for a piece of land we finally did it. We bought a typical NZ paddock that has been repeatedly stocked with cows and grass for baleage. In terms of diversity there is a great variety of grasses which I find rather fascinating. The land is narrow, 50m wide and a couple of hundred a long.It ended up this way because of council law and minimum subdivisions etc. A couple of fruit trees are still around after being repeatedly battered by 140km/h winds. Have I mentioned it's in Wellington NZ ? Most blossoms blow away and the trees have been heavily irrigated with greywater piped from the house and a bio-septic tank so although fruit tree roots are pretty shallow these are very shallow, lazy from too much water and I suspect without mulching will not manage well in a dry season. We still had a good frost in what is meant to be spring, around late November. Since I had some years to prep for permaculture plans, I had some ideas but honestly planning and reality are very different things. 1 - "Ponds \ earthworks" , Machinery is not as cheap as in Aus and earthworks start at 200$/h (6 tonne digger). Given the cost of earthworks this wasn't done. So ponds is pending finance so to speak. 2 - Turning your biggest problem into the biggest solution as the permie way would have it , that would be wind. I started planting trees for windbreaks, around 150 trees in total with a 80/20 split for light feeders and about 60/40 for heavy feeders. So for 10sqm of stonefruit I would have 16sqm of support, I settled with Italian Alder, Honey Locust, Acacias, and then scattered with tree lucerne. Most of the trees have been girdled, i.e. eaten by possums, hares and hedgehogs. I have to say that a success against this was bone salve, once I applied that it completely stopped. (I was a little skeptic to be honest). The total cost probably less than 20$. (less one pot because you cannot seem to get the smell out of cookware). 3 - Grass, grass and grass, the stuff is relentless. One would think, sure let's get one of those chicken fences like in the videos. Electric fence only works if you have grass less than 30cm high otherwise it earths itself. Solar setup for this and a fence is about 300$ for a reasonable quality fence and energizer. Not bad but you have to have way to prep the area to put the fence. You need a trimmer \ weeder etc. for this. (Or wait for a time when there is no grass). 4 - Mulch in the area as in "pea straw" is unavailable due to pea weevil infestation and due to the demand bales are around 18-20$ each. 5 - Where hot fence \ fence is sufficient I have added some sheep to "prep" the grass. I have managed to get a bit of a cycle going with sheep manure and grass clippings to start building local compost. This seems to work well and it keeps the sheep happy with a clean shed and provides free inputs to veggies. 6 - Veggie raised beds (uncovered) was a bit of a failure, everything got eaten \ blown away (straw) or grass grew through 3 layers of cardboard. The good sign from this is that the soil is extremely active with worms as they chomped their way through cardboard before it killed the grass, which is rather incredible. It is like it vanished in thin air. Veggies beds V2. is raised and covered with windbreak \ shade cloth. They seem to do the trick but comes at a cost of 1$ per meter (1m wide), or 5$/m for 2m width at the local retailers. This excludes cost of wood for beds \ frames which comes in around 5$ \ 16$ per linear meter. Bigger greenhouses simply blow away or the steel gets mangled like spaghetti with the wind. Even aluminium frame \ polycarbonate houses doesn't work. I have not tried the commercial poly carbonate tunnels but they are relatively pricey i.e. 10k$+. 2inch(diameter) steel pipes get twisted around concrete posts from the wind. Love thy neighbour. Honestly the critters that eat the trees and veggies, well . I asked my self why animals would risk eating this when they have nature. But it does speak very loudly on how little biodiversity there is that animals would literally come so close to dogs etc. just to get food. Neighbouring properties bale grass and raise stock, MASSIVE tractors crisscross these little farmlets to top \ rake and bale grass for sale for the dairy industry mostly. The tractors with topper \ rake is about 12m in length and 7m in width for turning, baling takes 4 phases, cutting, raking, baling and then loading. I cannot even imagine the type of compacting that that would cause over the years on these little farms. I would have loved to go organic and potentially develop a label of some sort or at least get certified but my neighbour, insist on roundup along his side of the fence to "maintain" grass. The council sprays the roadsides all of which have massive drains to prevent paddocks from flooding and drain water from the roads. they are about 1.5m wide and 1m deep next to the road, with our 2000mm rain per year all that "stuff" goes through our property. Gone are the days of cycling \ walking along the roads. I shake my head at my neighbor, who unfortunate though does also have cancer. (related?! to roundup) . What is in store for the future ? Well, since the hares at the tree lucerne they will develop bushier and probably better for wind barriers. I've added some additional evergreens that will be espaliered to deal with the wind and some fast growing native totaras, they are not very "functional" in terms of fruit etc but they really look nice! and makes great barriers. When I "maintained" an old rosemary I took most of the cuttings probably around 100 that's all doing well and should be a fantastic hedge for the veggies hopefully allowing the pests to eat their fill before they get to the jackpot! I've also planted some Oaks which should get rid of the southerlies and the sheep will clear some grass for an olive grove which can deal with the colder ocean breezes. The Alders \ Birch will in some years to come sort out the northerlies. I highly recommend that if you make the move rural to do so with a hefty savings for good equipment to get over that initial hump. Naturally with more diversity everything becomes easier, my bamboo is just creating new shoots after barely surviving a courier trip in plastic wrapping! A shovel works well but you simply cannot be using that when you are "establishing" a system. I have investigated horse \ donkey ploughs etc. The country is rather limited in that except for a few commercial vineyard horse pulled ploughs. Happy to share more details \ specifics.