EDIBLE LANDSCAPING and PERMACULTURE PLANTS

 

 We have all heard these words and terms before, but for our purposes Edible Landscaping is the use of food producing plants in the residential landscape. Permaculture is the conscious design of 'cultivated' ecosystems that have the diversity, stability, and resilience of natural ecosystems.

 While technically any fruit producing plant can be used as part of an Edible Landscape, we are separating out plants which are little known or not domesticated. This is a vine, bush or tree which has not been grafted and is grown on its own roots. Many of these are not named varieties and have a much greater genetic diversity than a domesticated fruit. Their ability to thrive in a wider variety of climates and conditions help make you successful with generally less care involved. Most of these plants are great for wildlife both as habitat and food source. Some are good as conservation plants and also work well in a mixed windbreak. Several are native and all are suited well to our climate. While plants in the "Domestic Fruit" sections can also be used in Edible Landscaping or Permaculture settings, these plants bring diversity to your property and provide different nutritional properties. They can be grown alone or as part of a “guild” in a Food Forest and have a natural resistance to pests and disease that many modern fruits can’t compare with.

Nitrogen Fixing Shrubs for permaculture guilds and edible landscaping

Nitrogen fixing plants are a cornerstone of perrmaculture plantings.  Through a symbiotic relationship with organisms in their roots, these plants can take nitrogen from the atmosphere and turn it into bioavailable fertilizer

Small trees for second layer in guilds and food forests

Most grow less than 15 feet and will work as either 2nd layer or canopy trees for your food forest.  Great for smaller areas to scale down your planting while providing unique flavors and food possibilities

Perennial Vegetables

Perennial vegetables for Guilds and Permaculture planting.  Get crops year after year with minimal inputs or labor. Perfect for companion planting and some as filtered shade for other prennials

Uncommon and Unusual Bush fruits for permaculture Guilds and edible landscaping

Undomesticated fruit varieties that are all good for human consumption. These deliver diffferent levels of vitamins, antioxidents and minerals than commonly available fruits. Many are able to grow in partial shade and perfect for understory plantings

Large trees for canopy layer in guilds and food forest

These are suited for #1 canopy layer in your food forest. Good for providing uncommon  fruit as well as shade and mulch from abundant leaf drop in the fall

Apples for Permaculture and Edible Landscaping

This is your chance to get a variety of rare, disease resitant or heirloom apples at greatly discounted pricing! They may need some training or pruning to improve their beauty but produce just as well as our other apples

Forest gardening is a low-maintenance sustainable plant-based food production and agroforestry system based on woodland ecosystems, incorporating fruit and nut trees, shrubs, herbs, vines and perennial vegetables which have yields directly useful to humans. Making use of companion planting, these can be intermixed to grow in a succession of layers, to build a woodland habitat.

Robert Hart pioneered a system based on the observation that the natural forest can be divided into distinct levels. He used intercropping to develop an existing small orchard of apples and pears into an edible polyculture landscape consisting of the following layers:

  • ‘Canopy layer’ consisting of the original mature fruit trees.

  • ‘Low-tree layer’ of smaller nut and fruit trees on dwarfing root stocks.

  • ‘Shrub layer’ of fruit bushes such as currants and berries.

  • ‘Herbaceous layer’ of perennial vegetables and herbs.

  • ‘Rhizosphere’ or ‘underground’ dimension of plants grown for their roots and tubers.

  • ‘Ground cover layer’ of edible plants that spread horizontally.

  • ‘Vertical layer’ of vines and climbers.