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Profitable Food Forest Gardens

 
Posts: 75
Location: Maryland
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A couple of years ago I began the planning phases of a tropical food forest garden. I could blame it on work, busyness, or on a hurricane or two, but basically, I haven't gotten to the execution phase yet.

BUT, I have though A LOT about what kind of forest I want to build. One factor in my thinking is what kind of crops I want to sell. Trees are incredibly prolific, way beyond what the average family can consume, so I've thought to design my forest around a few systems that I may be able to turn a profit from. In particular, I'm interested in a few value-added products with processes that the farm could be organized around.

For example, I have dozens of mango trees already, so I've been learning how to dehydrate fruit in hopes of selling them. Cacao is also popular in our region, so I hope to plant a few dozen of those and process them in house. The actual "food" from this food forest would be interspersed throughout the understory, rhizome layer, and shrubbery.


Is anyone else doing this successfully? If so, what does your system look like?
 
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Some farms I visited in Ecuador were growing coffee, bananas, citrus, avocados all together in a food jungle. The coffee and bananas seemed to be the main sales crop.
 
Joseph Bataille
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Dooley Tunner wrote:Some farms I visited in Ecuador were growing coffee, bananas, citrus, avocados all together in a food jungle. The coffee and bananas seemed to be the main sales crop.



Thanks Dooley. I have a ton of examples like that to work with, but I'm looking for a model that creates symbiotic relationships at all levels of the forest system. Co-cropping is one thing, and can be a good thing. But it is not necessarily a self-sustainable food forest system. That's what I'm looking for.
 
Posts: 104
Location: Vermont
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what were the native trees of Haiti pre European?  what trees are food? what trees can be substituted? what were/ the natural plant communities of Haiti. do some research of the island's native plant communities and you will find your answers of 'what works together'. found these three sites online searching for indigenous trees of haiti. don't know if they will be helpful.  good luck.
http://www.thehaititreeproject.org
http://fesprojects.net/elti/2010PanamaPresentations/G.Murray.pdf
http://reforestation.elti.org/resource/409/
 
Posts: 121
Location: Brighton, Michigan
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If you want it to be profitable probably going to have to manage it and plant  species that are a little bit more out of place than you want. I am in temperate zone 5 and have yet to see any profitable food forest.
 
BeeDee marshall
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Ray Moses wrote: If you want it to be profitable probably going to have to manage it and plant  species that are a little bit more out of place than you want. I am in temperate zone 5 and have yet to see any profitable food forest.



i am assuming you haven't seen this...https://www.forestag.com/pages/mark-shepard
or this http://www.resilience.org/stories/2010-11-12/mark-shepherds-106-acre-permaculture-farm-viola-wisconsin/
 
Ray Moses
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Location: Brighton, Michigan
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Yes I have seen that and have attended those short courses
 
BeeDee marshall
Posts: 104
Location: Vermont
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Ray Moses wrote:. I am in temperate zone 5 and have yet to see any profitable food forest.



just to be clear😊  is your site not profitable?  is no site in zone 5 profitable? or have you not seen any profitable food forest anywhere?

thanks
 
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