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Black Locust, permaculture food forest tree Alexandra King of Inspiration Farm (http in Bellinghmam, Washington talks a little about how black locust is great fodder, although sheep might like it so much it can make them sick. The sheep thought the black locust was the best tasting things in a brand new paddock. Robinia pseudoacacia. Brian Kerkvliet, also of Inspiration Farm, talks about other valuable aspects of black locust: fiber, fence posts, tool handles, nitrogen fixer, coppicing, shoots, pole construction, skids for an animal shelter, bee fodder (some of the very best honey) – a long blooming period, leafs out late, allowing the soil to warm before the tree shade kicks in, chicken food … Brian then shows off some tool handles he made with black locust. He talks about how easy it is to peel. He also shows using the bark for a basket. he talks about using it for a scythe snath. He compares black locust to hickory. He shows off some hay rakes. When used as a handle, it is springier than other woods. If the wood is left out in the weather, it won’t rot. Brian recommends black locust for rakes, shovels, hoes and many other tools. Black locust has a large root mass which makes it so it can grow very rapidly. Black locust lasts a really long time even when in direct contact with the soil. Brian shows a black locust seedling that was devoured by sheep and … recovering. Mark Vander Meer of Wildland Conservation Services ( in Missoula, Montana, talks about the value of black locust