Sustainable Forest Garden Design
This garden project had a brief to be as sustainable and ecological as possible. No flowers for flowers sake with all plant material to have a purpose: Edible;Herbal;Medicinal and wildlife beneficial. The existing site was originally a carpark and just under the compacted ground the old hardcore layers of tarmac bricks and rubble were discovered. Also on site was all the left over construction material from the building of the solar gain larch clad building designed by Icosis Architects.
These leftover materials and to be discovered materials were all incorporated into the new garden design and construction. The soil was recondition with aeration, compaction removed and organic matter introduced. A layout of different planting areas was created with a network of paths and a ‘work’ shed area to allow for various projects and wood chopping/storage for the log burning stove that heated the house/water….
Planting was designed on the layers of a woodland based around the permaculture design concepts of Forest Gardens. The high canopy is composed of a variety of fruit trees, scattered as an informal orchard ( but also with thought to creating privacy from overlooking windows without blocking the sun from seating areas… the mid canopy is a rich variety of fruit or wildlife friendly shrubs such as raspberries, herbs, hazel, berberis..and the lower canopy is a vast range of herbaceous from leeks, wild strawberries to echinacea…The garden has flourished and should be due to start cropping well on the 3 year old apple trees planted as half standard bare roots in 2012.