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11/05/2017 - Food Forest, Grow Your Own Food, Organic Gardening, Permaculture, Vegetable Garden

This season we turned a quarter acre of unused lawn into a permaculture style garden. A layout was created using a key-hole design style. This key-hole style maximizes the planting area while providing easy access to vegetables and creating different rooms within the garden. The existing lawn was stripped and lots of compost was amended to the soil. The compost provides nutrients to the plants, helps hold moisture and creates a much stronger soil composition. Plants were planted over the course of a few weeks. Many of the vegetables were grown from seeds and started indoors. Fruit trees were added to create shelter for plants that like a little shade. Most of the plants we chose were perennial species, which minimizes the future spring planting work. Some of the perennial plants we included were Apple, Pear, Persimmon, Cherry, Fig, Plum, Blueberry, Raspberry, Grape, Rosemary, Horseradish, Strawberry, Hops, Thyme, Sage and more. We also planted plenty of common annual vegetables, including Tomato, Pepper, Sunflower, Onion, Beet, Carrot, Basil, Parsley and many others. Other plants were included to provide shelter, wind blocks, bird and beneficial insect attractants, and aesthetic value. A deer fence was installed using cedar posts we gathered from our job sites. The cedar was also used to create a grape arbor and the gates.

Charlie helps the Atlantic crew prep the soil.

The garden produced a lot of food within its first season. We are looking forward to much more as plants get more established. Next season we plan to add more of your common vegetables, especially Heirloom Tomatoes. We plan on incorporating bees and chickens in the upcoming years. Birds can be very beneficial to a garden in terms of insect control and fertilizer. We did not use any synthetic fertilizer or chemical pest control products. We used wood chips to mulch the garden areas which helped conserve moisture and keep the weeds in control. We hope to use this garden as a test bed and example of what other people can do with their back yards. Call Atlantic today to see how we can design, install and maintain a permaculture garden in your yard.

Plenty of vegetables were harvested.