What is Permaculture? (and why does it look so messy…)
Permaculture is a design system for sustainable human settlement that imitates nature, creating whole, self-renewing ecosystems that are highly productive for human use. Permaculture gardens are often multi-layered, making optimal use of vertical space and as a result are sometimes called “forest gardens.” They emphasize perennial plants that have multiple functions, serving for example to provide animal habitat and support beneficial insect populations at the same time as they offer food, medicine, or fi ber for us. Imitating natural systems isn’t always a tidy affair. For example, rather than clearing away dead vegetation to maintain a neat appearance, permaculture gardeners will often leave it to decay where it falls, serving first to provide habitat for helpful insects like spiders and braconid wasps that prey on insect pests, before returning to the soil as organic matter that eventually decays into the humus so essential for maintaining healthy, nutritious soil. Take a moment to look around you and use this information board and map to navigate your way around this edible and educational garden.
- Springridge is a public commons garden; this means that its products are free for anyone to harvest.
- Please consider others when you harvest.
- Take care to avoid damaging plants, and only take what you know you will use.
Thanks are due above all to the Springridge stewards, the community and volunteers that support this forest garden. Without their dedicated efforts in planning, planting, tending and harvesting, the Common would not be the bountiful and innovative space that it is.