Our Mission:

Our Mission: To enable individuals and communities to take an active part in the cultivation of systems that provide the highest quality fruits, vegetables, herbs and other yields, in a way that benefits themselves, cares for the land and environment, and provides a surplus to use, share and reinvest into the system.

Monday, October 24, 2022

Backyard Food Forest - Polk City

We do a fair amount of landscaping focusing on a specific problem such as erosion, pollinator gardens or stormwater management. But...

Permaculture is our passion!

Permaculture is an ethics-based design science rooted in observation of natural ecosystems and mimicking those in productive landscapes.  Food forests and diverse backyard orchards are a big part of that, while also offering opportunities for stormwater management, pollinator habitat and valuing and protecting resources, like topsoil and water.

Mixed orchard with productive & beneficial understory

This project was one of our bigger residential installs last year and included a small orchard.  
A lot of wood chips were spread,
many hands make light work

Young Hazel and Aronia hedge
behind the pollinator garden loop

A bird friendly pollinator garden was located near the house for visibility, and near enough to support the mixed orchard plantings.  A native hedge provides privacy and habitat, with hazelnuts and aronia - the latter a nutritional powerhouse with great fall color as well.  


River birch, dogwoods and grasses
On the other side, a strawberry patch was included expanding the garden, and privacy was enhanced in this perennial wet spot with native trees and prairie plants.

Before - wet

We even got a first-hand look at the standing water there during the install!
"Dash Cam" screenshot

Standing water, potted plants waiting to go in

Before - struggling grass
In the narrow woodland along the back the grass was thin, hard to maintain and also required lots of trimming around the trees.

We added in native understory plantings like columbine, woodland phlox and ferns, as well as some raspberries and blackberries. A wood chip nature path provides access and recreation.

From the orchard into "the woods" on the mulch path

I am excited to share more projects, including permaculture inspired yards from this season, in upcoming posts!

For now, I'll leave you an image from a past presentation with Bill Mollison's definition of Permaculture.  Bill Mollison is the co-founder, along with David Holmgren, of the Permaculture movement.

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