The Home-Scale Forest Garden: How to Plan, Plant, and Tend a Resilient Edible Landscape Paperback – May 20, 2022
by Dani Baker
When market gardener Dani Baker attended a permaculture workshop at her local Cooperative Extension office in upstate New York, she was inspired by its message of working with nature to create a thriving edible garden ecosystem. She immediately launched a new experiment she dubbed the “Enchanted Edible Forest.” In The Home-Scale Forest Garden, Baker shares what she learned as she became a forest gardener, providing a practical, in-depth guide to creating a beautiful, bountiful edible landscape at any scale―from a few dozen square feet to an acre or more.
Baker provides information on planning, planting, and maintaining a resilient forest garden ecosystem, including:
- Using permaculture principles
- Observing and mapping your space
- Building planting beds, including hügelkultur mounds
- Coping with saturated soil
- Matching perennial edible plants to the right growing conditions
- Grouping plants in diverse layers that attract and shelter beneficial insects and birds
- Creating microclimates to increase the range of plants you can grow
- Pruning, propagating, managing pests, and more
- Expending less energy for greater reward
The Home-Scale Forest Garden is complete with descriptions of over 100 food-bearing and multifunctional plants for every layer of a forest garden: overstory and understory trees, shrubs, herbaceous plants, groundcovers, vines, and mushrooms, too.
The book includes over 200 photographs taken over 10 years of forest development, along with illustrations of a garden layout and special plant groupings for a range of conditions, including hot, dry sites and shady, moist sites.
Throughout, Baker candidly shares both her mistakes and her successes to help readers better understand the dynamics of a forest garden as it grows and changes over time. From her Asian Pear Adventure and Tamarack Travesty to her discoveries of unique ways to rescue and transplant tree seedlings, readers will appreciate the practical advice as she recounts lessons learned from her grand edible gardening experiment.