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Forever Productive Forest
Forever Productive Forest
Last updated:
Dayton, MN, US
Climate zone:
Cold Temperate

Daniel Halsey Jessica Schneider Lake Bleeker
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Forever Productive Forest

Project Type

Rural, Residential, Demonstration, Educational

Project Summary

I have always had an interest in the natural world of plants and animals. In 2008 I began to experience college, I began to become more knowledgeable about plants and worked summers as a forestry seasonal. These combinations started to develop an interest in native plants and restoration of natural ecosystems. However a question continued to persist in my head. How can these systems be valuable, and what is the point of diversity other than aesthetics. People value or don’t value ecosystems for different reasons, and what would make it easier for people (at least on their pocket books to restore natural areas such as farmers). I started to develop an interest in wild edibles and foraging. Then it all started to connect together. I started thinking what if we grow wild food in an ecosystem model. I tried a juneberry for the first time and wondered why their wasn’t orchards of mixed june berries with nitrogen fixing trees, and violet understories. I began to categorize what plants might be useful for; such as materials, food, medicine, or energy. I had thoughts about protein and from some random facts I knew about how in the past bison use to outnumber humans on the American plains, and thought why doesn’t our pastoral systems use native animals for protein production (I found later that the market wasn't in high demand). I had no specific terminology for what I wanted to do so then I started to surf the internet. I found terms such as food forest and forest garden at first, then one day while searching YouTube I discovered Jeff Lawton's 7 food forests in 7 minutes. I finally found someone who understood exactly what I had been imagining. Then the community of information just grew from there. From Ken Fern, to Bill Mollison, to Sepp Holzer, to David Holmgren, to Will Allen, to Paul Wheaton, and to this Huge community of people involved in these numerous different projects to work with nature, and create synergetic production systems that use ecosystem services to build on themselves. I knew that I had my own ideas, and decided it was time to create an official permaculture project, and join this great community. My main goal is to accelerate mechanisms of facilitation as fast as I can so that I have a large investment in biomater and materials for structuring the rest of my project. I will also continue to experiment with food, energy, medicine, and materials until I am in complete surplus of all of the above.

Project Description

This Site is located in a suburban area. It is 2.5 acres total. Though a small fraction of that is being used for the forest. I have a 52' x 36' orchard. Within that orchard I am experimenting with perennial grains, fruits, roots/tubers, vegetables, flavoring and sweets, medicine, materials, coppice, and textile fibers.

I am going to create a bent coppice hoop house this next spring. I have a long nursery run outside the orchard where I am growing a large amount of trees to continue to build this productive ecosystems. I have been recently experimenting with different rocket stove designs and found one I am likeing. I am building several raised hugelkultur raised beds for annuals. the largest quantity of products I have gotten so far has been woody biomass. Because of this excess I hope to begin doing some quantitative experiments soon on biochar, hugelkultur, and energy from wood gasification.

I hope to update this project description as I am able to.



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Rural Residential Demonstration Educational
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