I want to grow a garden that increases soil health, provides healthy food for my family and regenerates heirloom varieties. I want to do that in New York while living in Colorado, which puts me in a bit of a pickle. The principals that align into this project are “Use and Value Diversity”, “Produce No Waste” and “Creatively Respond to Change”.
A few strategies to build this garden could include clearing and thinning some of the overgrown brush that has grown in from a clear cut forest about 10 years ago. I won’t waste that organic matter though, but utilize it in hugel mounds of wood, leaves and vines, buried under soil. This mound will break down over five to ten years, release nutrients and retain water.
I’ll grow kale, squash and cover crops like comfrey and clover at first to start to build soil. As the fertility grows, I can plant more intensive plants in various guilds. I want to save the seeds to replant in subsequent seasons too. As I go along, I know I’ll need to learn and adapt to what nature has in mind.