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8 forms of capital active hope agroecology agroforestry alder buckthorn Amazon anxiety apples arthritis back yard beans Bec Hellouin beech tree bees beneficial berries biochar biodigester biodiversity blackberries blackthorn book review brain brassica cage budget build building campesino capital card deck Celtic festivals change changes chemical-free chickens christmas circular clay pot cleansers cleansing milks climate change climate emergency climate grief climate solutions climbers climbing cob comfrey community compost compost teas connection consciousness conservation container cooking coppice coppicing cordial cosmology courgettes crafts crisis crop protection Cross Quarter Festival cultural emergence culture cycles degraded design diary diversity DIY do it yourself dryland earth care Earth's energy ecoculture economics ecopoetry ecosystem ecosystem restoration camps ecosystems edges edible edible flowers education efficiency elder elderflowers elements elixir energy equinox ethics face mask fair shares Fairtrade farming feedback feminine ferns figs film firewood flower essence flowers food food forest food garden footbath forage foraging forest garden forest gardening forests fruit fruit leather fruit trees fungi future future care gardening garlic gift economy gin Give Nature a voice Glennie Kindred global poverty glut grapes greenhouse grief groundcover grow grow food grow your own growing guilds habitat habits handcream harvest harvests hawthorn hazel hazelnut healing shrubs healing trees health healthy soil heart health hedgerow hedging herbal herbal remedies herbal teas herbalist herbs holistic holistic planned grazing home homeless homemade wine homestead hope Hugelkultur humanure hummus hungry gap IBC tanks Imbolc incense increase yields Indigenous inexpensive influence inspiration International Womens Day jam keyline kitchen garden lacto-fermentation Lammas land landscape landscapes life lifestyle limeflowers livelihood livestock living labs logs lotion low cost low-impact Lush Spring Prize macerations Mangwende Orphan Care Trust market garden market gardening marmalade marshmallow mass heater meadowsweet medicinal microbes microfarm mimic mindset mitigation money moringa Mother Earth mulch multifunctional mushrooms native plants natural natural building natural fertiliser natural skincare natural swimming pool nature nature connection nitrogen no dig no waste no-dig November nutrition nuts observe oca October off-grid oil cleansing orchard orchards organic organic gardening outdoor shower oven oxymel oyster pallets pasture-fed patterns people people care peoplecare perennials permaculture permaculture design permaculture magazine award permaculutre permayouth pesto pests philippines pine tree pips pizza oven plant profile plants pollinators pollution polyculture polycultures preserving principles propagating protection pruning prunings psycho-spiritual awareness psychospiritual transformation rainforest rainwater raspberries recipe recipes reduce reed beds regeneration regenerative regenerative agriculture relative location relative matter remedy renewable renewable energy resources restoration reuse revolution rhythms rootstock rootstocks roundhouse roundwood runner beans sage salad salve Samhain schools Scotland scotts pine seasonal seasons seeds selfcare Sepp Holzer september septic tanks sewage treatment shade sheet mulching shrubs skincare sloes slugs small solutions small-scale smallholding social justice soil health solar solutions sowing spiritual spring squash stacking functions stock-free straw straw bale summer sustainable Sweet Bay syntropic systems temperate terraces thistles thrutopia timber timber framing tincture tonic toolkit tools transformation trees upcycle urban veg garden vegan veganic vermicomposting vinegar walnuts waste water water cleansing watering weeds wellbeing wetland wild edges wild food wild garlic wildflower wildlife wine recipes wings winter winter greens winter salads wood stove woodburner woodland woodland management woodlands worms yarrow year-round food yield young people youth zai pits zone 00 zoning

Topics

8 forms of capital active hope agroecology agroforestry alder buckthorn Amazon anxiety apples arthritis back yard beans Bec Hellouin beech tree bees beneficial berries biochar biodigester biodiversity blackberries blackthorn book review brain brassica cage budget build building campesino capital card deck Celtic festivals change changes chemical-free chickens christmas circular clay pot cleansers cleansing milks climate change climate emergency climate grief climate solutions climbers climbing cob comfrey community compost compost teas connection consciousness conservation container cooking coppice coppicing cordial cosmology courgettes crafts crisis crop protection Cross Quarter Festival cultural emergence culture cycles degraded design diary diversity DIY do it yourself dryland earth care Earth's energy ecoculture economics ecopoetry ecosystem ecosystem restoration camps ecosystems edges edible edible flowers education efficiency elder elderflowers elements elixir energy equinox ethics face mask fair shares Fairtrade farming feedback feminine ferns figs film firewood flower essence flowers food food forest food garden footbath forage foraging forest garden forest gardening forests fruit fruit leather fruit trees fungi future future care gardening garlic gift economy gin Give Nature a voice Glennie Kindred global poverty glut grapes greenhouse grief groundcover grow grow food grow your own growing guilds habitat habits handcream harvest harvests hawthorn hazel hazelnut healing shrubs healing trees health healthy soil heart health hedgerow hedging herbal herbal remedies herbal teas herbalist herbs holistic holistic planned grazing home homeless homemade wine homestead hope Hugelkultur humanure hummus hungry gap IBC tanks Imbolc incense increase yields Indigenous inexpensive influence inspiration International Womens Day jam keyline kitchen garden lacto-fermentation Lammas land landscape landscapes life lifestyle limeflowers livelihood livestock living labs logs lotion low cost low-impact Lush Spring Prize macerations Mangwende Orphan Care Trust market garden market gardening marmalade marshmallow mass heater meadowsweet medicinal microbes microfarm mimic mindset mitigation money moringa Mother Earth mulch multifunctional mushrooms native plants natural natural building natural fertiliser natural skincare natural swimming pool nature nature connection nitrogen no dig no waste no-dig November nutrition nuts observe oca October off-grid oil cleansing orchard orchards organic organic gardening outdoor shower oven oxymel oyster pallets pasture-fed patterns people people care peoplecare perennials permaculture permaculture design permaculture magazine award permaculutre permayouth pesto pests philippines pine tree pips pizza oven plant profile plants pollinators pollution polyculture polycultures preserving principles propagating protection pruning prunings psycho-spiritual awareness psychospiritual transformation rainforest rainwater raspberries recipe recipes reduce reed beds regeneration regenerative regenerative agriculture relative location relative matter remedy renewable renewable energy resources restoration reuse revolution rhythms rootstock rootstocks roundhouse roundwood runner beans sage salad salve Samhain schools Scotland scotts pine seasonal seasons seeds selfcare Sepp Holzer september septic tanks sewage treatment shade sheet mulching shrubs skincare sloes slugs small solutions small-scale smallholding social justice soil health solar solutions sowing spiritual spring squash stacking functions stock-free straw straw bale summer sustainable Sweet Bay syntropic systems temperate terraces thistles thrutopia timber timber framing tincture tonic toolkit tools transformation trees upcycle urban veg garden vegan veganic vermicomposting vinegar walnuts waste water water cleansing watering weeds wellbeing wetland wild edges wild food wild garlic wildflower wildlife wine recipes wings winter winter greens winter salads wood stove woodburner woodland woodland management woodlands worms yarrow year-round food yield young people youth zai pits zone 00 zoning

The Forager’s Garden

Anna Locke
This practical guide shows you how to create your own edible sanctuary, for year round food, in any sized garden, with minimal effort and care for Nature too. Go foraging at your own back door!

What Anna Locke describes in her new book, The Forager’s Garden, sounds so very much like my own garden here in the Australian subtropics and I absolutely love it – for the same reasons Anna loves hers. A forage garden is brimming with abundance in every corner, is home to a myriad of creatures, and is a beautiful community of textures, colours, flavours, habitats and niches for you as a gardener too. The soil is protected and nourished, the garden ecosystem comes alive and, once established, there is embarrassingly so little to do.

In a forager’s garden, the role of the gardener is more one of reflection and nurturing, with moments given to a little taming of the abundance. Depending on your climate, it can be full of food and biodiversity all year round with most of this being perennial and self-seeded. You’ll find all kinds of food plants, medicinals, flavours, soil-improving plants, insectary plants, mulch plants, native species, wild foods usually found in hedges and meadows, and edible ‘weeds’ too. Wherever you look in your forager’s garden you will see possibilities – like an edible hedge, or a culinary ground cover, a fruiting shade tree or gorgeous edible flowering specimen. I constantly delight in the discoveries of new plants each time I go out, and seeing how the garden itself comes more alive over time as a community, and that I’m part of that.

Anna takes us on a journey of discovery into what makes a forager’s garden work so well. She shows there is a certain wildness about it, but at the same time a rigorous design process and philosophy. Throughout the book there are clear strategies to support you to create your own forager’s garden – a garden that replicates how Nature gardens – a garden ecosystem. In my experience, this kind of garden can’t be built. The focus instead is in creating the conditions for it to flourish and increase in complexity over time. Anna takes you by the hand and helps you get this started.

It is obvious that Anna has a deep love of plants and fascination with how natural gardening works. The idyllic notion of taking a wander out into your garden and coming back with a basket of food for your meal is what this is all about. It’s not a dream. It’s entirely possible with a forager’s garden. In the classes I teach I always say that you can grow 10 times the amount of food you ever thought possible simply by changing your perception of what is food, and this is exactly what Anna is promoting too. She encourages us to take a look at all the edible parts of the plants we grow, and select plants particularly because they are edible.

I also agree with Anna that creating a forage garden makes growing food far easier and more enjoyable than you ever thought possible. This approach is so suitable for modern lifestyles and hopefully encourages more people to give home food gardening a go. The benefits are so profound for our health and planetary wellbeing. Like Anna says, let’s grow food simply everywhere!

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Further Resources

Watch

How to Plan & Plant a Forager’s Garden

Books

A Food Forest in your Garden
by Alan Carter

Edible Paradise
by Vera Greutink

Articles

A Successful Herb and Annual Vegetable Guild

About the Author

Morag is a permaculture film-maker, writer, speaker, teacher, designer, gardener living in a permaculture off-grid village in Australia.