Food Forests Ecological landscape design & sustainable landscaping
Food forests and forest gardens are becoming ever popular in modern times, the concept of using established forest systems utilising the suns energy at various canopy layers to grow edible crops is favourable as modern agriculture is reliant on the solar energy of yesterday by consuming fossil fuels.
Modern mechanised methods of farming focus on monocultures growing hundreds of thousands of a single crop. These industrial factory type farming practices heavily rely on chemical based herbicides and insecticides to be viable again often contributing to decreasing biodiversity and requiring huge amounts of fossil energy. It should be noted that modern agriculture on average consumes 3 calories of energy to produce just 1 calorie of nutritional energy meaning it is completely unviable and is solely relying on oil.
Food forest gardens rely on utilising the balance of ecologically balanced forest environments to capture the suns energy using a combination of tall trees, medium trees, shrubs, climbers, perennials and annual plantings all with different functions. Abundant produce can be found in the canopies of nut trees fruit bushes perennial vegetables and starchy tubers of the forest floor. The complex diversity of forest systems means they are teaming with biodiversity with very few pest problems. Wildlife has its part to play in recycling and pollinating food plants a so natural harmony is created between man and nature. Not only are food forest gardens highly productive up to feeding 10 people an acre they are very beautiful aesthetic pleasing places to be. Forest gardens are certainly going to have to increase in number if a modern human existence is to be realised in this country without fossil fuels.
Ecospaces has a good knowledge of not only species beneficial to food forest species optimal for a given geography we also have the knowledge to perceive vital ecological interactions between implemented forest garden species. This aids us in creating a planting palette with the highest possibility of maturing into a highly productive, bio diverse, beautiful environment suited to the specific requirements of our clients.
Not only do we have the knowledge and expertise in planning and planting new forest gardens from scratch we also can survey existing woodland environments and convert them to productive food forests. Through thinning existing non diverse woodland we can implement a five to ten year plan to regenerate exhausted woodland environments into more ecologically productive systems.