Design and Implementation Plan for the Wellesley College Edible Forest Garden Limited Edition, First Time Released, and Signed by Dave Jacke
The Design and Implementation Plan for the Wellesley College Edible Forest Garden, currently under installation by Dave Jacke. Spiral Bound, over 100 pages with full color polyculture designs, habitat plan, site analysis, planting plans for 8 habitats, and an extensive species list AND an estimated budget for the full implementation.
Incredible resource for people who are actually designing and installing edible forest gardens in their homes, schools, and communities. Nuts and bolts for understanding HOW TO DESIGN.
Welcome to Permies, Dave:
Love the work you have done and continue to do, sharing your knowledge and enthusiasm for such practical applications of labor and resources to create FOOD in the forest! I have a small piece of land in VT that we did not clear when building our house and have an area that is fully treed. So excited to learn more about harvesting food without clearing for the typical garden plot. We are planning to introduce nut bearing trees and learning about inoculating mushroom cultures on logs. Enjoyed my PDC last Fall where I was introduced to your Edible Forest Garden volumes and have been "on-fire" with enthusiasm ever since. Can't wait to see your new book...keep the good work going!
So good to "see" you again! I admire your energy, all over the place and now you're here, too! I followed Emily's blog about your trip down under, it was delightful and made me feel like I was right along with you there.
Of course, I already have Edible Forest Gardens so I won't be in the running for that, nor do I need to take a trip to Montana right now, but that Wellesley Garden plan looks mighty interesting. I have already designed and implemented a small permaculture teaching plot in our local community garden but sure could use more tips. I'm a one woman show here. I am also eagerly awaiting your book on coppicing.
Keep up the most excellent loving work you do and thanks for taking the time to be here. Now.
Furthering Permaculture next to Lake Ontario.
I already own both of the Edible Garden books. I have only browsed them so far, but they look to be very useful.
The new text looks really interesting.
I would love to attend the class however.
Now to think of a question or two.
A lot of things come out of nowhere, so look everywhere.
Welcome, Dave. Good to have you here. I'm probably not going to have any luck thinking of any questions, though. The answers to most I come up with probably comprise the content of the published material, so I figure I might as well just buy a set.
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
-Robert A. Heinlein
Location: Bluegrass region of Kentucky, USDA Zone 6a - unpredictable but manageable
posted 6 years ago
Welcome to Permies Dave. I live in central Kentucky and am surrounded by land that was cleared for Horse and Tobacco farming centuries ago. My wife and I just put an offer on a 5 acre homestead with perimeter scrub trees, but the land is all pasture. We would like to reforest about 2/3 of the forest in a combination of food forest and usable timber (black locust for fence and fuel, etc.) I'll post in the forum with a couple of questions for you this week. Thanks for giving your time this week.
I heard Dave on the permaculturepodcast the other night. So welcome to this forum. It's the first time I've ever posted. I was fascinated by your discussion of useful trees for things other than food. You mentioned on that podcast about the diesel tree. Could the diesel tree be propagated in cold weather high-altitude climates such as South Central Colorado? Is there a cold hardy variety?
Edible Forest Gardens is such a wonderful resource. Thank you! Looking forward to Design and Implementation Plan. Since we live in a very cold climate, I'm always looking for more resources and information for plants, tree and shrubs that may do well here.
Finally came up with a question...I am very eager to get a few hugelkultur mounds going this season. Are there species of wood that are best to use or those that I should avoid? We have a plethora of rotting logs that are left over from clearing to build our house that are no longer of any value for firewood and I hope to use these for the mounds. Mostly Ash, Poplar, Cherry, Hornbeam, White Birch and some Pine. Love learning about all these practices that just make sooo much sense in a world that has become so senseless. Thanks for any feedback you have on my question.
Dear Mr. Jacke,
I was very pleased to learn that you will be fielding questions on this forum. I look forward to the dialogue. I have studied your two volumes and would love to be able to attend your workshop (with my wife) as well as read your upcoming publication.
In June, we will be attending a weeklong design course in Wisconsin given by Mark Shephard and Peter Allen. I was wondering if you have read Mark Shepard's book "Restoration Agriculture" and if so, what your reaction to it was/is. I don't see any contradiction between forest gardening and his approach. It just seems that he is addressing the possibility of large scale perennial agriculture to provide staple crops to replace annual staple crops. In any case, I would be very interested to know your opinion.
Thank you for all your valuable contributions.
I have both of your Edible Garden hardcovers and they are amazing reference sources as well as works of art.
I live in central Texas and got feedback from a local forest gardener that books on forest gardening that are written based in temperate climates stress access to sunshine. His feedback for central Texas was to plant understory trees and bushes on the East side of larger trees so that they will be protected from the searing afternoon heat/sun.
What do you think about this approach in southern climates?
posted 6 years ago
Just after posting my previous question, I found the Kickstarter info for Eric Toensmeir's new book project and became a backer. I am looking forward to receiving his book and papers. It seems that his book has a very similar theme to Mark Shepard's "Restoration Agriculture" book. Nevertheless, I would still be interested in your take on Shepard's book.
It's so good that you are doing this for us. Thank you.
I started a food forest last fall and am having great fun accumulating plants, creating the design and watching things leaf out this spring. I'm looking forward to reading your books, seeing the questions and your answers and getting lots of new ideas.
My first question is, How do YOU deal with grass initially?
Here's what I'm trying in some areas right now. I've been sheet mulching with cardboard and woodchips around new trees and their shrubs. When the grass is gone, I was going to seed it with various nitrogen fixing things. Second question: Do you think I could spread the seed on the woodchips NOW and let it root down through the cardboard? Would it be better to wait until the cardboard has done its job?
Hi Dave - I have read your two-volume Edible Forest Gardens and am using it to help me design. My question is about the allelopathy of black walnut. Is there any validity to the claims that some plants will help to form a "buffer zone" around black walnut that will impede the spread of juglone beyond the buffer zone? I have read that hackberry, and white mulberry will do this. Another sub-question has to do with hackberry. Does the juglone tolerance differ between the local hackberry, Celtis occidentalis, commonly called northern hackberry, and the more southern hackberry, Celtis laevigata, commonly called sugarberry?
Looking at various lists of plants with juglone susceptibility and tolerance that are available on the internet, it is clear that some lists are just copies of others. The lists are confusing in that some plants are listed in some as tolerant and in other lists as susceptible. I gather that the lists have been compiled through observation and that variability of tolerance/susceptibility can come from 1) different varieties of the same species, 2) distance from the black walnut, 3) soil conditions--poorly drained soil creates more susceptibility. To help with this I have compiled for my own use a combined list showing what each list says about plants native to my area, Peterborough, Ontario. But hackberry is one of the plants that is listed as both susceptible and tolerant, and even buffer-zone forming, and the difference between the northern and southern species isn't clarified anywhere that I can find.
I wonder if you have anything you can add that would help my designing--the tree is on my neighbor's property immediately adjacent to my garden, and the range of the roots is listed as somewhere from 50' past the dripline to two tree heights past the dripline, so I definitely need to learn how to exist in harmony with this tree.
I chair a planning committee in Nova Scotia, Canada. I've mentioned that it would be better if landscaping plans for developments included edible plants. No take-up so far, but I'll keep requesting it. What plants would you recommend as suitable for landscaping? Instead of scotch pine, or rhododendron, for example.
Taking Your course in 2006 was the best thing I did that Year.
I am working towards a thorough study of area east of Algonquin Park,
20-year commitment integrating a financial mechanism with capitalist business,
based on a piece of logic set to revolutionize what it means to compute.
I have much to learn from the Apios website,
look forward to reading the discussion here.
My interest is in coordinating a study for the North-East, as content for the mechanism,
towards a world-wide, economically integrated production - and local printing of a Permaculture Almanac everywhere.
My focus for now is technical development, it is kind of unbelievable what I have built.
MY MAIN QUESTIONS ARE TO BE FOUND AT THE END OF THIS POST, PRECEDED BY SOME CONTEXT AND (MAYBE LENGTHY) EXPLANATIONS
I have not had the pleasure of reading Edible Forest Gardens, although I have heard only good things about it, it certainly seems to be as complete and thorough as can be!
I am wondering how applicable it is to European conditions, as much in terms of (native) species, climate data (no hardiness zones here..), not to mention measurement units
I am part of a collective garden group within a broader newly set up social-ecological allotment scheme (i.e. making gardening and growing food without chemicals accessible to a wide range of people, irrespective of origin or income) in the very progressive but permaculture-poor town of Gent in Belgium. We have designated ourselves a permaculture garden and intuitively seem to be moving towards a fruit-dense garden with as many perennials and interesting/uncommon edibles we can fit without them shading each other out (latitude is 51 degrees here and the sky is mostly grey and moist..). None of us have yet found the time and/or money to follow a PDC, although I've had the honour of participating in a few to teach some stuff about soil only (I'm a soil scientist).
Although land is scarce and expensive here (as in really), I believe permaculture has tremendous potential here as a catalyst for positive change in food systems, housing systems, and all the ways we are linked to each other in this thing we call society. Unfortunately permaculture if often misunderstood here as a very hippie type of gardening with a lot of spirals and mandalas and not much order or productivity, and it's never an easy concept to explain in a nutshell. Our garden lies surrounded by walking paths where people pass by all the time, so it is in fact a great opportunity to demonstrate what a space designed according to the principles of permaculture can look like and what it can actually produce and offer.
As the member with most previous practical experience of permaculture (to a modest extent) and gardening in general, I tend to take initiative when it comes to planning and design.
We found many useful plants growing here already: a large walnut tree, an even larger ash tree, two tall pear trees, hazel, oak (young), various semi-wild Prunus trees (haven't given fruit yet), and as much willow, alder, reeds, nettle and comfrey we care to let grow back along the water edge where we are situated. However we also inherited a less fun legacy of giant hogweed (of which there seems te be a huge reserve of viable seeds in the ground) and many well-established bramble bushes. I respect the tenacity of these plants but really they take up more than their fair share!
Our soil is a a very moist heavy clay and the ground water level is not much more than a foot deep in most places - notice the use of US/imperial units for your reading pleasure In addition the soil is littered with stone, brick, glass, metal and various plastics and industrial fibres from some demolished dwellings or structures several decades ago. But I would still deem it as being a potentially very fertile soil.
We have agreed on many plants we wish to include in our garden (and have planted many already - mainly fruit bushes, but also various peruvian tubers for example), and allocated sunny spots for annual vegetable beds, nested as is most convenient between existing trees and mounds of litter-infested and bramble covered soil. We have the vision of what the system could evolve to be (paradise), and have some idea of what individual elements this could consist of, but we have trouble seeing how exactly we can combine individual plants of different sizes/ages in terms of spatial placement so we can reach this sort of harmonious continuity that the concept of (super?)guilds and food forests evokes.
So the question is: how do we best go about deciding where to put what? How can we best fill the spaces between the pear trees, the walnut tree and the various berries we have already planted, and what sort of things can we wedge into those spaces that are rapidly covered by giant hogweed? What design process do we adopt to set us on the right track towards a 'complete', integrated and efficient use of space (200-250 square meters - sorry staying metric here :-b ). What should we think of as the climax food forest x years down the road?
Of course the Edible Forest Gardens books would no doubt be an immense help in this respect (hint hint...), but any tips or suggestions would be most welcome too - from anyone on this great community for that matter!
I look forward to any replies, and to many years of delightful harvests!
"Be the change you want to see in the world" Ghandi
I have been away from this site for awhile, but decided to join in when I saw you would be here fielding questions. I know almost nothing about food forests, but I am intrigued by the idea. We have 75 acres of mixed hardwoods and open glades (with way too many invasive red cedars!!!) in southwestern Missouri. Our "official" vegetable/herb gardens comprise about 3 acres near our house, which we have improved a lot since moving here 20 years ago by building up the soil with compost, green manure and animal manure (goat, chicken and humanure). Our biggest problem has come in the last half dozen years -- a little thing called global warming that is turning our gardens into heat sinks in summer and literally cooking our vegetables on the vines.
My question is a bit different than what to grow in shade, because I pretty much already know the plants -- domestic and wild -- that tolerate partial to full shade. What I really want to know is how well typical garden plants that thrive in full sun will do planted under trees now that heat is such a problem across our planet. We simply can't grow anything well out in the sun any more. The plants get so hot that they won't put out flowers, and even when they do, our pollinators are dying of heat stroke or the baby fruits wilt and die on the stems. Our entire summer, in 2012 was one 95F plus day after another -- with ground temperatures so high that you could not walk barefoot on bare earth without burning your feet, and even the 100% vegetated areas uncomfortably hot at midday. The only way we seem to get any kind of harvest under these conditions is to shade our plants with cloths during the heat of the day, but that gets really time-consuming. (And kind of defeats the whole idea of the laid back philosophy of permaculture.)
So... will sun-lovers like peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, herbs, etc. tolerate shade better than blazing sun when the temperatures soar continuously? If so, I think our "gardens" are going to become cactus patches and we may move our other food into the woods!
By the way, I am definitely hoping to win one of your books, but will be buying a copy if I don't. Thanks for stopping by!
I just realized that I have another, rather comprehensive, question for you. About 8 years ago, we retired a section of our garden to let it rest and improve naturally. (The space is roughly 75' x 100' on a very slight, south-facing slope.) At one point a few years ago, we "temporarily" heeled in about 25 wild plum and black cherry trees, plus some elderberry bushes and spice bushes in a very small area in the center of this space because we were working on a lot of other things and didn't have time to get them planted properly elsewhere. One thing led to another and after all these years, we still haven't gotten around to digging them out and transplanting, so of course, they have now formed a huge fruit tree/shrub cluster in the middle of once open garden space. Some of the trees are about 15 to 20 feet tall already, and sending out new saplings as far as 30' from the parent clump. Most of the plums and all of the elderberries bear fruit now. All around these trees, we have a ground cover of rue, garlic chives, leeks, lemon balm, poke, burdock, arugula, dandelions, sumac and various other herbaceous growths -- including a lot of what I think is "cow parsley". I realized that this entirely neglected space had quickly begun to build itself into a food forest.
My question is, what would you do with this space? Cut or dig out most of the trees, leaving only a few or let them thin themselves naturally? How about the other plants? Leave them and inter-plant, or remove most of them and make a more organized -- or rather, planned -- food forest with more diversity? Or should we just leave it alone entirely as an experiment to see what Nature gives us in a few more years?
Welcome Dave. I'm just learning about Permaculture but love what I am reading. Using our land more effectively is so very important today. I look forward to hearing/learning more from you and your works. Thank you.