Edible landscaping offers many benefits for those interested in sustainable living.
Neighbors may envy the beauty, but rarely realize the immense bounty such a garden can produce. Those who maintain them love the diverse community of plant life but also take comfort in achieving a measure of self-sufficiency as a result.
Permaculture designer Michael Judd has written a book on the topic called “Edible Landscaping with a Permaculture Twist (this is an affiliate link and The Sustainable Living Podcast receives a small compensation if you make a purchase through it.) He recently joined me on the podcast to offer some tips on using permaculture principles to create edible landscapes.
Learning About Regenerative Practices
Michael shares a bit of his history growing up in Appalachia and then living with a Mayan tribe in Mexico. The Mayans showed him how a community can provide all of its own needs through regenerative practices that actually restore the soil.
When he stumbled onto permaculture, Michael naturally gravitated toward it. He subsequently started his edible and ecological landscape business, Ecologia. According to his website, the goal of Ecologia “is to create landscapes that feed all the senses through talks, tours, consultations and installations.”
Michael discusses designing functional landscapes that are also aesthetically pleasing, as a bridge linking regenerative practices with the current culture. As he puts it, “When you start with the culture that’s around you, it builds a really strong base.”
Edible Landscaping as a Bridge to Permaculture
Giving hands on workshops on such topics as; how to grow mushrooms on logs; how to create garden beds that capture rain water; and how to start a food forest helped to build his business, which has been quite successful.
The workshops served to familiarize people with permaculture concepts on a practical level, thus hooking them into wanting to learn more.
Michael offers some great tips for anyone interested in creating edible landscapes. He also discusses the regenerative power of fungi and the work of Paul Stamets, a pioneer researcher in the field. You can view the Paul Stamets TedTalk that he refers to, below.