Layouts – Woody Plant Planning Template

Layouts – Woody Plant Planning Template (Google Sheets)


While I love and widely recommend the Overyield software platform that Jeremy Kaufman of Propagate leads the development of, some of you are going to be doing one-off planning of woody plant systems where you use free software such as Google Earth Pro to use.

The penalty of taking the ‘free’ software approach is less precision and longer working times and that you have to do longhand ‘bills of quantities’ and economic returns analysis. That’s been what I’ve been doing for most of my career and I thought it would be useful to put into one Google Sheets package (LINK HERE) a revised list of table templates for you to use, including:

WoodyPlant-Index – adapted from a template that Permaculture co-originator David Holmgren developed in his 1994 design manual, ‘Trees on the Treeless Plains‘, this table enables you to consider 41 factors around a plant’s physiology, tolerances, direct yields and passive functions.

Livestock-Index – this table is one that I have been developing for a while and considers 36 factors around the characteristics, reproduction, requirements & production outputs of 25 different livestock species. All of the figures have not been entered, however it does provide a point of reference for you to do so

Production-Calendar – I first developed this table when planning a wide-spaced, mixed-species woody plant crop chicken forage system for Bruce Burton (of Milking Yard Farm) in 2015. The purpose being to plan the integration of species that yielded seeds, pods or fruit across the 12 months of a year.

Layout-Alleys – Also developed for Bruce Burton in 2015, the species listed in the ‘3. Production-Calendar’ template have been planned in a wide-spaced layout where the cell dimensions of the table are to scale—a technique I learned when working closely with globally renowned agroforester, Professor Roger Leakey in 2004-5.

Layout-Block – Following the work with Professor Leakey in Viet Nam in 2004-5, I found myself using this template when working with the Australian Aboriginal company ‘Cacao Culcha‘ in the later part of that decade—with both classic interplanted and interrow block layouts. These templates would be useful for anyone planning complex layouts such as those Scott Hall might teach in his ‘Syntropic Agriculture‘ trainings.

Planting-Cost – This is one of my oldest templates and was a frequent go-to from about 1996 as I developed project cost estimates for a wide range of different woody plant planning, project management, ground preparation and establishment projects. Its at once a guide of the A-Z of what it takes to get woody plants into the ground, but also keeps a log of the different costs of the different stages involved.

Assumptions-Table – I have my old friend Campbell Mercer (of Manna Hill Estate) to thank for this one, I can’t quite recall the circumstances but he provided me with this assumptions model in 2001 as we were looking to calculate the returns on investment (ROI) from different woody plant systems—especially farm forestry (timber).

Gantt-Chart – I had an earlier version of this chart which I adapted in the last decade using a ‘Holistic Planned Grazing’ (HPG) chart that I created. I used the HPG chart as I had created cells for each day of the year, broken up into blocks of 10 days. The template version I have shared here is for a modern vineyard project that I am planning for the Udabno project in Georgia.

All of these tables are able to be adapted to your own circumstances.

We hope that they will be helpful to you as you plan the integration of woody plant systems into your agroecologies.

If you want to learn more about how to integrate these systems then please consider joining the Regrarians® Workplace professional development network as a member.


~ Darren J. Doherty, CPAg AIA