Garden 2017 Concept Sketches
Pictured above is a concept sketch for my garden(s) next year. It’s actually an instance of a pattern which I will try to detail with examples.
The idea is you have a few basic components, you cluster them in groups (I think plants like to “grow together”). So my basic units are:
- Hardy perennial culinary herbs
- Various types of berry plants
- Diverse fruit trees
Clusters, though not necessarily formal, and not necessarily regular distances:
Note: individual clusters will be a bit more mixed: some herbs in with berries, etc.
Then each of those clusters is part of a larger cluster set which continues with random variations across the landscape:
Not quite a “Food Forest” per se, but an extremely biodiverse, mostly wild-cultivation technique which can still produce both short term, middle term and long term yields as the ecosystem develops.
Wild sown components
Interspersed among and between clusters is a sort of “grab bag” of whatever seeds will be on-hand, with the intention of continuing to stock the soil seed bank with biodiverse plants that will adapt on their own over successive generations, especially:
- Mixed cereals (wild sown)
- Mixed vegetables (wild sown)
- Climate Change is happening.
- We don’t know/can’t predict with much accuracy now what crop plants will grow here well in 5–10 years or longer.
- Biodiversity is automatically better: both more dynamic and simultaneously more stable.
- Biodiversity will attract wildlife and pollinators.
- No irrigation or fertilization will be used.
- Randomized mulch where available (wood chips, maybe hay and cut material from garden) and deeply mulching where possible.
- Plants like to grow together in mixed-type clusters: in communities, touching, exchanging with dense connections between them. Same thing on an ecosystemic level with non-plant actors.
- Conventional companion planting. I won’t pay any regard to “what people say” are good plants to put together. I will go by “feel” and by observation.
- “Natives” vs. “Invasives” arguments. My axis of qualifying component plants is more a useful/unknown use.