I would like to explain how we use permaculture and circular gardening in our garden:
The idea behind it is that most of what you take from the garden goes back to the soil eventually. Permaculture stands for Permanent Culture, meaning that we try to create agricultural ecosystems in a self-sufficient and sustainable way. This can be implemented in several ways:
- We try to imitate the forest floor by covering the bare soil with grass-clippings, straw, old vegetable scraps… We use cover crops like zucchini, hosta, rhubarb etc, where we can and use companion-planting (like the famous three sisters: corn, beans and zucchini).
- For every tree we took down when we built the garden, we planted another.
- We barely bought any materials for our garden (like soil, bricks, logs, planks, concrete, iron… instead we used what was left after building our log home as edges for garden beds, chicken coop, poly tunnels etc.
- We save our compost and make it into new soil using the Bokashi-method. If we have vegetable scraps left, we feed it to the chickens.
- Every cardboard box that we come across is used as a base for a new garden bed. On top we add horse, cow or chicken manure together with grass-clippings and straw.
- We save seeds every year.
- We save energy by planting an enormous amount of seeds during the winter, in candy boxes. This way creates strong seedlings that wake up when they are ready instead of being forced up in artificial growing light. Although we use grow lights for certain plants that take a long time to grow: aubergines, bell peppar, leeks, onions, chili, celery etc… We do live in ice-cold Sweden after all.
- We live off the crops in the garden and eat seasonally. We store huge crops over the winter or sell if we have an abundance of some crops.
- We plant seeds regularly during the year to spread out the harvest over the season, instead of growing all at the same time.