Posts Tagged With: food forest

Seeds of Friendship

I got to meet a fellow blogger last week! Through Florida Survival Gardening I found Sheila’s Little Experiments. Turns out both Sheila and I live (and garden) in the Ft. Myers area. I commented on a couple of her posts, she took a look at my Food Forest Inventory then graciously offered me seeds from my ‘wish’ list. What a treat! I stopped by her work and we were able to chat for a few moments. Look at all those seeds! There are a few things there I am not familiar with, so I am going to have even more fun learning about new varieties of edibles. 2014-06-18 Seeds from Sheila

It’s always nice to meet someone with whom you have things in common. Especially here in Florida, where the learning curve can be a little overwhelming. Sharing knowledge, experiences, tips- and seeds, benefits all of us. Sheila and I are talking about taking a trip ‘up North’ to visit David, the man behind the wonderful blog Florida Survival Gardening.

Categories: Food Forest, Garden | Tags: , , , | 1 Comment

Sanibel Food Forest Project

January through May garden tower 2014-05-14 18.58.44 (2)

 

March 2014 Passionfruit Edulis

 

March 2014 117 (2)

March 2014 Bananas, Avocado, Coconut background, Jujube, Fig, Jaboticaba, garden tower

March 2014 142 (2)

March 2014 Papaya in foreground

 

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May 2014 Papaya foreground, Barbados Cherry, Meyer Lemon behind, garden tower left

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June 2014 July 2014 Passionflower Edulis and Incarnata, Red Salvia, Coreopsis, Water lily

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July 2014 Banana circle, Avocado, Jujube, Jaboticaba, various native wildflowers, sunshine mimosa, perennial peanut, Fig

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July 2014 Bananas, Figs, Jujube, dragonfruit, Jaboticaba, Meyers lemon, Coconut, various wildflowers, sunshine mimosa, Peanut butter tree, Orange geiger,

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July 2014 Coconut, Amaranth, Jujube, Sunshine Mimosa, Day lily, Meyers lemon, Barbados Cherry, Papaya, Milkweed, Sesame,

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July 2014

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July 2014 Passionflower Edulis and Incarnata, Red Salvia, Coreopsis, water lily

Categories: Food Forest, Garden | Tags: , | 1 Comment

Creating Affordable Garden Information Markers and Placards

I am committed to turning my Sanibel home property into a food forest. People always ask- why? I am particularly interested in Florida native plantings. Neighbors ask- why?  One goal for my yard is that every plant be usable to people or animals in some way; as a source of food, shelter, a textile, or companion to other plants. Why you ask? I want to create a way to educate you, and anyone who visits my garden why- and maybe inspire you to do something similar with your yard.

There are several reasons I decided to tackle the ‘food forest’ project. First, I love dirt and I love growing things. I love the creatures that visit my garden for food, water and shelter because of what I grow.

I nurture my connection to God through my stewardship of the earth. I grow intellectually by learning about Botany, Ecology, Wildlife Biology, etc. I am concerned about the quality of food my family consumes.

There are other reasons for creating a food forest. Growing your own food saves money,

significant amounts of money. Residential property is expensive to purchase and maintain! There are property taxes and landscape maintenance costs. Until moving to SW Florida, I had never used a yard maintenance company.. As a master gardener, I’ve always taken great pride in creating and keeping my own gardens. But that was in Southern Maine, and SE Idaho. Keeping a yard neat and tidy in zone 10 is a whole ‘nother world! Maintaining an ornamental property takes A LOT of work, money; and it’s not necessarily an environmentally friendly endeavor.

Creating a food forest using “native” edibles is another goal. It’s good for the planet, good for our health and for my pocketbook. Natives need less water, fertilizer and pesticides than a traditional lawn-scaped home. The more food you grow at home- the less you spend at the grocery. Less fertilizers and pesticides means healthier people and animals- and more habitat for wildlife.  The benefits of using a residential property as a food forest far out way any reason to maintain a traditional lawn-scape. Now I need to fulfill another goal- sharing the value of the food forest with others.

My landscape does not look traditional but it is beautiful. When something is different, it attracts attention. Good! When you look at my yard, you see the beauty as well as educational plant markers and placards that share the benefits of planting a food forest. After the first round of plantings for our food forest in January 2014, I purchased a few professional grade plant markers for the fruit trees. They are fantastic, great looking, easy to read, samplerdurable…and expensive! To stay within my budget for the rest of the project, I have to find an alternative way to label plantings and make placards.http://solutionsforyourlife.ufl.edu/

 

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Photo Jun 08, 10 58 37 PMOnce printed, I will use a decoupage technique  to affix the sticker to either a high quality stake, or to a flat metal plate I can use as a tag on a tree or bush.

Curious to get feedback from you about the information I have included, and the readability of the font and layout.

Photo Jun 09, 1 23 00 AM

Photo Jun 08, 8 19 27 PM

Do you prefer a traditional black background, or would you like to see the labels in color?  Would appreciate any feedback, and I will post again with a tutorial once I have made the first markers.

Categories: Florida native, Food Forest, Garden | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

SW Florida Food Forest and Native Edibles Links

I am always researching and looking for information about gardening in SW Florida, food forests, permaculture, Florida native plants (particularly its native edibles.) Here’s a list of information, people, places and stuff I have found useful. I decided to include links to beneficial insects and wildlife because when you garden you need those elements too!

yard for life  Yard For Life Southwest Florida– One woman’s journey to plant a beautiful, sustainable garden in SW Florida. Research oriented, she posts a lot of great information, links and photos!

 

all native garden center  All Native Garden Center – 300 Center Road, Fort Myers, FL 33907 239.939.9663 Good prices, good-looking native, friendly knowledgeable folks.

 

FSGBannerGreen  Florida Survival Gardening– great blog updated daily with loads of information about food forests, native edibles and more. Informative, entertaining, great resource.

Pick Me Yard  Pick Me Yard– Lovely blog about edible gardening in SW Florida. Updated regularly, great stories and photos. I want to visit this family garden! Lots of links and great info

 

ECHO  ECHO– A working farm and demonstration gardens in Ft. Myers. Approximately 925 million people in the world are hungry. ECHO empowers small-scale farmers to increase their harvests, and the nutritional diversity of their crops.

 

riverland nurseryRiverland Nursery– specializing in native and other sustainable plants which can flourish in Florida’s unique and often arid climate.

 

fgcuFGCU Food Forest– The Food Forest is a student-run botanical garden which highlights tropical/subtropical edible species that grow well in South Florida.

 

crfeCaloosa Rare Fruit Exchange– Their focus is to provide members and the community the means for learning about tropical fruits that can be grown in the Southwest Florida region.  General Meetings are usually held on the first Tuesday of each month at 7:00 p.m. in the NorthFort Myers Park  Community Recreation Center.  Visitors and guests are welcome and encouraged.

 

florida native plant societyFlorida Native Plant Society– promote the preservation, conservation, and restoration of the native plants and native plant communities of Florida.

 

green deaneEat The Weeds Green Deane says “My goal is to help people who want to know more about foragables to enjoy the process and be safe while doing so. While I am now based in Florida my website and experience includes northern climates and international foraging.”

 

top tropicalsTop Tropicals– While these folks aren’t strictly about natives or edibles, they do carry both and their website is very well-organized.

 

539860_317385291720746_955472427_nLee Queen Bee– When you have edibles you need pollinators. This Facebook page is a great resource!

 

 

ifasIFAS Extension-The University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) is a federal, state, and county partnership dedicated to developing knowledge in agriculture, human and natural resources, and the life sciences and to making that knowledge accessible to sustain and enhance the quality of human life.

PRFYardSignweb-499x400Plant Real Florida– We are a professional trade association and our members include growers, retail nurseries, landscape professionals, environmental consultants, allied product and service suppliers and nonprofit supporters of the native plant movement. Come to us for native plants and expertise in using them.

fly by night inc  Fly By Night Inc.- A wealth of information on these important and beautiful mammals. I purchased a large bat house from them (it will hold up to 1,000 bats!) and in August 2014 will document it’s installation.

nabaNorth American Butterfly Association   working to save butterfly species throughout North America and developing educational programs about butterflies for schools and park rangers and naturalists.

 

blog-header-image-long1Black Soldier Fly Blog  A great resource for learning to compost with these amazing beneficial insects.

bglogoBug Guide We are an online community of naturalists who enjoy learning about and sharing our observations of insects, spiders, and other related creatures.

Categories: Butterflies, Florida native, Food Forest, Garden, Insects | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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