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Food Forest Card Game - Game Forum  RSS feed

 
Posts: 78
Location: Providence, RI, USA
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The Food Forest decks have been available since last September, and I'm mailing out packages almost every day now!  More ideas are in the pipeline but, as a one-man shop, I need to leverage every tool available to create and test new instructions.  Currently there are several that have been tested or that are still in testing mode.  I could definitely use feedback on those that are still being tested.  Beyond that, there are so many possibilities for these decks that a team of developers and testers could literally create hundreds of uses for them.  But I don't have a team.  So this forum is to provide space for folks (including me) to brainstorm new ways of playing, and teaching, with Food Forest.  I'll use this forum to announce new instructions as they are developed, and you can use it to describe ways that you use your own decks, or to brainstorm ideas that you think might be worth developing.

If you don't yet know about FF, you can learn more here: About Food Forest

So far I haven't created any rules that use the classification found near the bottom of the outer circle of each element.  This classification describes the element as either "root/tuber", "fungus", "groundcover", "herbaceous", "shrub", "climber", "understory", "canopy", "structure", "animal", "insect", "natural disaster", or nothing.  (See the Blueberry example below.  Its classification is "shrub")  As you can see, many of these classifications refer to where the element falls in the layers of a food forest.  It has long been my belief that these classifications might be used as "suits", if you will.  I have been meaning to build rules around this concept, but have not yet gotten around to it.

One idea that has floated around, half formed, in my mind is as follows: each player would be dealt several plants or other items, and there would be several dealt face up in the center.  Perhaps these would be dealt in rounds, with some going to each player and some to the center (I don't know how many for each).  Each player would add things to the central collection according to rules I haven't yet figured out.  The goal would be to build a multi-story "straight", if you will, using the classifications and Permaculture zones (labeled "pz" - see image below), but possibly with other requirements (like one element shouldn't shade other elements, or that the classifications have to exist with one logically following the last (root, then fungus, then groundcover, etc. ) 



Maybe there would need to be some requirement for input and output matches, etc.  The objective could either be competitive, with one player taking the central "trick" under certain conditions, or it could be cooperative, with the objective being to create a food forest with a certain number of completed guilds.  Now remember, I haven't even tried this out, but I think it could be a lot of fun to play if we got the rules finalized.  There might even be two versions, one competitive and one cooperative.

The idea of a common pool of elements goes back to a brief flirtation I had with Texas Holdem several years back.  Maybe just starting with Texas Holdem rules, using the layers to build straights, and the inputs and outputs to create pairs, someone could invent something even better, and less complex, than my idea above.

You can find completed instructions, and some undergoing testing, here: Instructions for Food Forest

Beyond all this, do you have ideas of your own?  Have you found new ways of using the decks with different age groups?  Have you invented your own ways to play?  I use them in the classroom with elementary school kids where we play Picklet (found on the instructions page above) .  I am eager to hear how others are using them.  With such a creative group of people, there are probably some really interesting ideas just waiting to be tapped.

And remember, Paul Wheaton has his own permaculture playing cards which are very cool, indeed.  You can see Paul's cards here: Permaculture Playing Cards
 
pollinator
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Interesting I had been looking at the zero reply category and came across this. Looks like a fun way to incorporate permaculture ideas into recreational fun times with others.

I had picked up the permie playing cards when I saw them, so just placed an order for these.
 
Karl Treen
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Thanks Devin! 

I'll get that into the mail Thursday morning.  I am assuming you are having it shipped to a different name, since the order I received at about this time isn't under your name but looks like the right section of the country... 

This deck contains a lot of plants that should grow well in your zone.  I am hoping, eventually, to expand with more cards for tropical and dry climates, too.

Once you have the cards, please don't be a stranger to this forum.  We would love to have your ideas!

Cheers,
Karl
 
Posts: 134
Location: Zone 4b at 1000m, post glacial soil...British Columbia
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This looks brilliant.

I see variations like Community Garden, where the object is to work collaboratively to build that community food forest, and everybody wins when it gets done--
versus Homesteaders, where the winner gets their own food forest growing first.  In Homesteaders, you can barter with your neighbour for the cards you need.  Obviously your neighbour wants to barter for their own benefit, too.  Demerits for unconnected cards (add their value like Scrabble tiles?)
Desert Island, the premise being to pack minimal supplies to take to an island retreat:  players take turns shopping at the seedy Saturday seed exchange (drawing cards from the deck), trying to get a complete suite without duplication, returning extra seed packets until they have everything they need.
One could do a Square-Foot Gardening version, which can be a solitaire or for a group, where you have to fit your whole interconnected garden within a certain grid, like 2 cards by 8 cards for example, if that would actually work.
Maybe a Dominoes version, kind of a solitaire, where the object is to create the longest chain of connections possible, ideally 52 cards snaking across your table.
Feedback Loops, where everyone takes turn drawing from the deck...if you make a match, you draw again until you don't make a match; then it's the other person's turn.

Do you want feedback on your existing instruction document?

On another note, has anyone tackled the idea of Permaculture Tarot, or should I let well enough alone? 

 
Devin Lavign
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Karl Treen wrote:Thanks Devin! 

I'll get that into the mail Thursday morning.  I am assuming you are having it shipped to a different name, since the order I received at about this time isn't under your name but looks like the right section of the country... 

This deck contains a lot of plants that should grow well in your zone.  I am hoping, eventually, to expand with more cards for tropical and dry climates, too.

Once you have the cards, please don't be a stranger to this forum.  We would love to have your ideas!

Cheers,
Karl



Yep shipped under a different name. And I will share ideas and impression on this forum when I get the cards. BTW my brother is a huge gamer. 1/3 of his basement is various types of RP games, board games, and card games. So I will also share the cards with him and get his impressions and ideas to share here. He might have some great insights.
 
Karl Treen
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Regan/Devin - Thank you!

First Regan, what a ton of awesome ideas!  I am going to have to get back to you with full feedback because tonight is just too busy to do your post justice but, wow, wow, wow!

Devin, that would be really helpful!  I know that hundreds of people are using this game out there in the world, and I know that they are really creative folks.  But without a crystal ball, it's impossible to see (and pass along) all of the cool ideas they are having.  I would love to hear any ideas you come up with!  This deck is so open-ended that, as Regan has so aptly pointed out, there are a ton of possibilities.  We've only tested the tip of the ice berg!  And I picked up more printer cartridges tonight so I'll get your stuff in the mail tomorrow! 

Thanks again!
K-
 
Devin Lavign
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Just got my cards, so will be taking some time then will give my input after I have some experience with them.
 
Karl Treen
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Excellent!  Thanks Devin!
 
Posts: 232
Location: Northern New Mexico, Latitude:35 degrees N, Elevation:6000'
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AWESOME!!! I literally missed the Kickstarter by one day. I have to use cellular data, "for the past year", so I've been out of the loop. And I was so bummed that I missed the Kickstarter opportunity. I'm happy to see you have a website up. I placed an order earlier this morning.😃 I'm looking forward to it. I'm gonna get another set for family, and I was wishing that I had done so as I checked out. LOL
 
Karl Treen
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Thanks Joshua.  Let me know when it arrives.  Might be there already. 

I've been so tied up with house projects, Permaculture presentations and garden planning (not to mention the day job) this month that I haven't had time to check back in here.  February should offer more time to focus on game instructions again.  I am torn in many directions but really appreciate all of your support and enthusiasm!



Cheers!
Karl
 
Karl Treen
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Hello friends!  The Food Forest website just got a BIG facelift, courtesy of my artistically inclined cousin Bonnie.  Please let me know what you think!  I've been so busy in the classroom, running Permaculture Providence, building trellises, and getting my own seedlings started that it's a wonder this even happened!  Please share with friends on social media, etc.  And let me know what you think about the new design! Click here!
 
Regan Dixon
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"Guilding the Dandelion":  love the name, haha!
 
Karl Treen
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Thanks Regan.
 
Karl Treen
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Are you looking for a way to get free decks of food forest game cards?  I've been so busy with my garden that I haven't had a chance to develop any new games this spring.  So I am looking for people to help me design some - and I'm willing to pay with a PDF copy (for your testing and development) as well as 3 real, honest to goodness, free decks after your game is accepted!  That's an $85 value - just for playing games!

Note: I will pay US shipping costs only.  If you do not have a US mailing address, I will still send along the decks, but you will need to pay the difference for shipping to your location.

Here's the deal:
1. Contact me first with your idea(s) - you can find my email address on the "Contact" page of my website: https://foodforestcardgame.com/pages/contact - so that I know you're working on something.
2. If your idea sounds like it's got legs, I'll send you a free PDF of the card game that you can print out to develop your game - that's already a $10 value just for contacting me!
3. Submit your game to me in a format that I can open in Microsoft Word.  It should be similar in format to the games I have posted on my website, requiring little editing (if any) from me.  If you can add relevant, helpful images to your rules, I'll throw in a forth deck!  Feel free to grab images from anywhere on my website or to take pictures of the cards you have printed out.
4. Once I have received and accepted your submission, announce your new game on this Permies thread.

Make it a class project!  Get others involved!  This is a great way to get free teaching materials for your organization!

I am looking for simple and complex games, but you need to write your directions in a way that is easy to follow.  Preferably, games will help to teach Permaculture principles but, for simple children's games, we can be a little flexible.  Please have a friend read your instructions and try to play your game before submitting it.  If your game is accepted, you will be given full credit for the game on the food forest Card Game website, and we will be happy to put a link to your own website along with it.  You will also get those 3 free decks for you and your friends.

I look forward to seeing your ideas!

Happy spring!
Karl
 
Karl Treen
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Hey folks... Karl here. Sorry to be so out of touch on this forum! It's been quite a summer in the garden (as well as in life) but it's time to buckle down at the desk again!

I wanted to let folks know that we have been working on a Dutch translation of the food forest card game. Yes! Robin Demey fan was kind enough to translate all of the text for us, so I am now in the process of formatting a PDF version of this, but don't expect there to be hard-copy versions of the deck anytime soon. The printable PDF is actually a lot more cost-effective for overseas educators, so that's what we're starting with. Hopefully the day will come when this deck is available in multiple languages. In the meantime, please keep the game ideas coming and I'll keep plugging away!

p.s. don't forget to check out the new Food Forest card game website!

Cheers,
Karl
 
pollinator
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This is a really neat idea! Perhaps this would be an expansion pack to the existing game rather than a standalone game, but I play a lot of simulation/strategy games and I can see having some setup where you have "an external pressure" on your homestead, whether that is due to excessive "pests" that you have to accommodate/redirect (Plants vs Zombies!) or perhaps runoff from upstream that you use a combo of earthworks and filtering to minimize the impact on you.

You could also provide an optional monetary value for outputs and inputs, and come up with a competitive play with the goal of who can reach a certain annual net profit first, as Paul would say Permaculture should be profitable! Or use the monetary value goal to beat out Monsanto for winning hearts and minds! 
 
Karl Treen
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Hey Mark,

Thanks for the great ideas! The deck does come with "disasters" cards (tornado, drought, aphids). Some of the games use them to throw challenges in your way.  I should probably add a hurricane card, I guess, given the recent devastation! With respect to earthworks, there is also a "swales" card and there are beneficial insects that can counteract the aphids. I can totally see more games based around these potential disasters (kids really love it when there's a threat of disaster). I also can see ways of playing poker-style games with the cards. I will have to think about how the monetary value could be applied for grown-up games.



I sometimes get push-back about competitive games. My goal is to have a variety of games that suit every type of player - from competitive to contemplative. Although Permaculture itself is certainly not meant to be competitive, the nature of games is often at odds with this non-competitive ethic. Fortunately, the deck is open-ended enough to accommodate both the Zen Buddhist and the thrill-seeker.

Please keep the ideas coming. I love it!
 
Karl Treen
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Having just read through a thread on the pawpaw fruit and, since this is a fruit featured on the food forest playing cards, I thought the info might be of interest here: https://permies.com/t/50190/Intolerance-Pawpaw-Fruit

The gist of the thread is that some folks have negative reactions to the pawpaw fruit (and leaves and bark), especially after eating the fruit cooked or in large quantities. Pawpaws contain toxins, which make them less susceptible to pests but also make them something that should be eaten in moderation. The thread lists several varieties that have lower amounts of toxins, so those who have not yet planted paw paw trees should consider these types when planting.

The issues that people have with the fruit appear to be more annoying than life-threatening. Personally, I have eaten pawpaw fruit with no ill effects and have fed them, perhaps unwisely, to children during classroom projects. I have never seen any negative reactions, but I have never seen them eaten in large quantities and have never prepared them cooked. I have eaten several of the fruit at a sitting but have not repeated this often. In the future, I will eat them in moderation and share them with a warning.

It does not seem like the reactions are so violent or frequent as to justify replacing this card in the deck. My sister had a similar reaction to strawberries after eating too many of them, and there are plenty of fruits and vegetables that cause negative reactions in some people but are staple foods for others. That said, more info will also be added to the pawpaw card in a future printing.

Best,
-Karl
 
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Karl, I'm glad you had reason to pop this back up....I just now ordered the game, had meant to awhile back and needed a reminder
Looking forward to playing it with family over the winter.

I'm trying to buy my gifts at permies this year
 
Karl Treen
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Judith!

Thank you so much for your support! Please make sure to note that these cards can be used to play many games, NOT just one. This is the most common point that people miss.

The cards are intended as an open-ended invitation to game creators and regenerative gardening enthusiasts. While I have developed several games for the cards, and will be working on more this fall, I really hope that a community or people will evolve to create more games for these cards.

Perennials can do so much for us to create food stability. If planted correctly, and gently nudged, they can create very productive, low-maintenance food supplies. All they need is design, planting, space, time and a little love.

Best wishes,
Karl
 
Judith Browning
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You are very welcome Karl...I have an ulterior motive as our son and family have a brand new blank slate two acres and I'm hoping it will inspire some permaculture type planting.  They are open to possibilities.....
 
Karl Treen
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Judith, that's great! Where are they located?
 
Judith Browning
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Karl Treen wrote:Judith, that's great! Where are they located?



They're in Arkansas, same as us....hot summers, rocky soil, unpredictable winters....lot's of growing potential.
I say rocky soil, because their acres are and every place we've lived in the past forty years has been, until now...I can finally dig a hole to plant in without a pick and a pry bar 
 
Karl Treen
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Judith, so glad you've found a place without stones!

If you know folks who still have stony ground, woodchip gardens might be a way to go. This video by Justin Rhodes about Paul Gautschi and his "Back to Eden" garden. It's a great way to eliminate the need to till, fertilize and water: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-MSMfmbxaU&feature=youtu.be


 
Karl Treen
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I went mushrooming today and found more hen of the woods mushrooms than I could carry. I also found chaga, which surprised me because I have never found it before.

Depending on where you are, edible mushrooms can be really easy to find. That doesn't mean that fungi shouldn't be included in your food forest. Fungi are going to be there anyhow, but you have the opportunity to help determine which type you would prefer to have there. In my forest garden, giant puffballs appear in late summer. These were not planned, but I know that their hyphae are working in my garden to move nutrient, water and information where it is needed most. Mycelium are amazing organisms. If you haven't looked into how they can benefit your food forest, maybe it's time to find out!

Below is a picture of some Hen of the Woods mushrooms that I found today!

 
Karl Treen
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A NEW GAME for the food forest cards!!!

For those of you who are still getting used to the cards, I know that many people learn better by watching than by reading. I am hoping to make some instructional videos in the near future so that folks can watch how games are played.

In the meantime, here is another simple game you can play to get used to the cards' basic mechanics. Please let me know if you have suggestions/improvements on these instructions.

The game is called "House is Wild!" and is based on "Crazy Eights". Click the image below to find out more!


 
Karl Treen
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I recently had the great pleasure of speaking with Scott Mann of the Permaculture Podcast. We had some really enjoyable discussions, both on-air and off, about life, Permaculture and the food forest cards. You can hear a bit of our rambling for yourself on his most recent podcast: Permaculture Podcast
 
Karl Treen
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Hello Fearless Food Foresters!

It's been a very active winter. We moved to a new home in December, where I plan to design a new urban Permaculture site. Stay tuned for more info as the design progresses! Between patching and painting, I've been meeting with Permaculture Providence, experimenting with ferments, meeting with teachers at the Montessori school food forest, and exchanging notes with some wildly creative Permaculture writers and designers. On that note, I wanted to draw your attention to a great new book by Ina Curic called Mirabelle's Forest Garden. You can find out more here: Mirabelle's Forest Garden



You will see more from me in the spring. For the time being, sit tight and enjoy the season!
 
Karl Treen
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Sharing for my buddy Matt Powers.
This guy works so hard to bring education and positive energy to the Permaculture community!


 
Karl Treen
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A Downunder PDF Version of the food forest Card Game is NOW AVAILABLE!

Hello friends!

It's been a long time coming, and entirely due to my own stupidity!

At print time I realized that I couldn't afford to run a Southern hemisphere version right away (or translations or even a few photocopies, for that matter). But it has always been my hope to make the food forest deck accessible, and sensible, to everyone. Still, money is a factor when it comes to printers, so it just didn't happen.

Then I created my PDF version - and we started working on translations. Now you would THINK that it would have clicked in at that point... but it still seemed to me that I was going to have to rotate the compass directions on every one of the cards to make it make sense in Australia, and that's a lot of work!

It was only today that I realized how to do it. And it was SIMPLE! A picture will be worth a thousand words here:

Northern Hemisphere version:


Southern Hemisphere version:


Holy cow! Why did this take me so long And there are only about 7 designs that were affected.

Anyhow, I am sorry I made all of my Australian friends wait so long for my brain to kick in! I still can't afford to print these up for the physical decks, but anyone from Downunder who has already purchased anything from me (either PDF or otherwise) is entitled to this PDF version. Simple contact me at
so I can email you the link!

Also, please don't forget to visit the Food Forest Card Game web page from time to time to check what we're up to. We appreciate the support!

Cheers,
Karl



 
Karl Treen
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Please vote! I'm building a new backyard food forest - on the cheap this time! I'm doing a lot of plant sharing online and posting my process on social media. I'm not sure this forum is really the spot to add daily updates about it. What do you think?

Should I:

1. Keep you all updated here
2. Create a new forum to discuss it
3. Just leave it on Instagram and Facebook

btw, if you want to see all of my updates thus far on one of these platforms, here are the addresses:

Food Forest on Instagram
Food Forest on Facebook
 
Karl Treen
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Hello Friends!

Check out this cool video flashback to 2016, when I was still drawing the cards!

 
Karl Treen
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Hello friends!

I just posted a video of me digging out a squash vine borer, the bane of the squash farmer's existence! Hope it's helpful!

 
Karl Treen
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I'm going a little nuts making videos about the card games right now. I'm launching the videos first on Instagram. Follow me there, using the link below, to see the latest and greatest. These are all designed to be "bite-size", partly because IG doesn't allow more than 60 seconds in the regular feed, and partly because I really want to keep things short, so to give you the most value for your time. If I move too fast, simply repeat the video until it's clear.

Click http://bit.ly/ffcg_ig to follow me on Instagram.
Click http://bit.ly/FFCGCards to visit the website and gift shop!

This "unboxing" video is the first in the series. I've already launched the next video, instructions for playing "Picklet", on Instagram!

Enjoy! :)

 
Karl Treen
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Breaking News!

I have created a very affordable "Make Your Own Deck" PDF printout for teachers and anyone else who might want to use them to create custom Permaculture games and/or projects.

With the PDF, you can print infinite pages of blank cards and use a fine tip sharpie pen to customize them for your own plants!



Find out more here: http://bit.ly/ffcg_blanks or go to https://FoodForestCardGame.com

 
Our first order of business must be this tiny ad:
Food Forest Card Game - Game Forum
https://permies.com/t/61704/Food-Forest-Card-Game-Game
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