YOUR FOOD FOREST
SoCalGardenHealth exists to give you control of your health. One of the important ways to give you control is to give you keys to establishing a backyard where you can have fun, walk outside and EAT!!
There are three foundational keys to establishing this FOOD FOREST:
(and then of course, RECIPES to help you consume your rewards!)
Establish Your Food Forest for Food Security / Prepping / Off the Grid
Food security is said to be a real issue for many. Food is a foundational need that we have to take care of first - before we can even consider other needs.
In biblical times, dropping "leftovers" as food was harvested, allowed for widows and homeless to "glean" those leftovers to feed themselves.
Before we had fencing, front fruit trees might help a passing neighbor eat.
But today, with the many government restrictions, many of us don't know when we can get to the store - or sometimes even if we should go to the store - or if there will be stores!
Kind of a crazy thought, but the reality is that there was a time before grocery stores... what did people do then to feed their family?
My favorite way of ensuring food - growing it in your yard - has other major benefits. The food growing outside keeps until you harvest it instead of going bad in the fridge. And how many of us have pumpkins, zucchinis, apples or potatoes harvested in fall that are still good in spring?
We are not saying you have to go totally off the grid, but we have found it a source of security to know that even when pickings are limited in the cupboard or fridge, we can go outside, pick fruit off a tree, or gather nourishing greens from which to make a salad on any month of the year!
More Reasons to Establish Your Food Forest:
I'm taking a course in environmental toxins and what they do to our body and our environment.
I did realize this was important - after all 1/5 of the program that I used to get rid of blood sugar issues was cleaning the liver of toxins.
But did I know babies' umbilical cords when tested were shown to have 200-300 industrial chemicals(?)
I had no idea!
It would be easy to assume that what you grow in your backyard in compost would have more nutrition because it tastes better.
There is solid recent research that shows that there is more nutrition in organics, but this is not a new concept.
Dr. Albert Howard wrote about how the health of the soil determines the health of the food that grows there and most importantly, the health of the humans that eat the produce of that soil!
JI Rodale wrote about how the worms, humus and biological life in the soil make it possible for more nutrition to be taken up by plants...
We will be defining Organic soon.
The organic gardening link here is for ideas on the annuals to grow organically in compost in your food forest.
A Food Forest is composed mostly of carefully thought out perennials, but you also can include annuals . Perrenials might provide shade and protection or a place to climb for the annuals, but the annuals give you the opportunity to get annual changes in varieties grown!
Because of the situation with Covid, I wanted this link to provide ideas of unusual food items that would add nutrition and interest to your organic garden!
Call me a control freak, but one of the biggest lessons from the Covid-19 lockdown for me was making sure I have more control. More control about my money (with more streams of income) but also more control about food (and TP lol!)
The coronavirus quarantine made me look at our backyard in a different way. I have always loved learning about permaculture and organic gardening, but it was more of a fun hobby... 2020 made me think of it as more of a need.
I felt the need to be in control of my food, in control of the chemicals I was exposing my family to.
Your Food Forest is my way of helping you have more control.
I know, we can't control everything, but why not control what you can!
Critters are creatures we share our produce with - until they start taking it all! We have had to deal with gophers and squirrels often here.
We put a wire mesh under the raised beds in our garden - not just chicken wire but 1/4", heavy gauge wire to keep them from digging into our garden from below.
We also use chicken wire from above on strawberries to protect from birds and gophers climbing over when they are getting established.
Here is a hint on how we use garlic to keep our gopher friends away from our trees:
Harvesting from Your Food Forest
It is a blessing to be able to go outside, pick a salad of dandelion, moringa or purslane, mix in sardines or anchovies, olive oil and apple cider vinegar and you have a meal full of nutrition and fit for a king!
Establishing a food forest doesn't happen overnight, of course, but we want to give you tools to help make that vision a reality for your family faster than if it was never a focus!