Ever dreamed of working in nature? Or wanted to learn about permaculture? Live four months in the beautiful border area of Catalunya and Aragon (Spain), or all of the above? If yes, an amazing opportunity has now opened in Boodaville. We are looking for an ESC volunteer, starting immediately until december. Working and living in Boodaville is an experience you will keep with you for the rest of your life! Does this sound like something you would like? Then please sent your CV and a motivation letter to email@example.com
Its already the end of June, for us in Boodaville this means high temperatures, close to no rain and a lot of work. But that is a good thing. And the best thing this year must be to be able to watch the Boodaville food forest thrive in these harsh conditions. It has been an absolute joy to watch it grow and be able to harvest. We are aware that we are only reaping the fruits planted by the ones before us. Without the amazing design of Kate and the brave volunteers of Youth In Permaculture last April the Food Forest would not be here right now. So now seems like a good time to look back at a successful week in which the next phase off the food forest started. Because permaculture is among so many other things about sharing, we want to share a little about the process leading to Let´s Regenerate and the week itself.
The tale of the food forest starts in October 2016. During 2016, 2017 and 2018, also known as the first phase. Paths were outlined and the first tree donuts were a fact. A key component was learning by observation which gave us a lot of information. So we arrive in April 2019. All the ingredients are in Boodaville; all the information gathered over the years, a piece of land where multiple regenerating practice have taken place, Kate’s design and a group of passionate volunteers.
The idea behind the design is to create guilds. These are families of plants that support each other.
If you are interested in knowing more about the desing check out the design report:
At the Riberola Festival on 7th October Boodaville ran an Intro to Permaculture workshop and we did a practical planting seeds of 3 different types of trees, which have properties such as – drought resistant, fast growing, providing food for animals, (Jujube is edible for humans too), fixing nitrogen, resistant to high and low temperatures, don’t have loads of pests. The trees are Honey Locust, Jujube and Italian Buckthorn.
We left the seeds in vinegar for a few hours (ideally it would be overnight) and we scratched the surface of the seeds.. this imitates the natural process of the seeds being chewed by animals then in their acidic stomachs for a while.
Here is the picture of the seeds on the 10th November.
Honestly I have no idea whether anything growing there is the beginning of a tree. I mean I can see what is grass, but the other little things sprouting… I’m not sure!! What I did notice before I pulled out most of the grass is that the one pot with a bit of straw mulch, upper right of the photo you see? That pot had 5 times as much grassas the others. (yes.. i should have taken that picture!!)
¡¡¡THE GAME!!!! : SPOT THE DIFFERENCE! between the three pictures 🙂
And here’s an explanation of what’s going on in these pictures. The level of detail to which we plan every step of the design is incredible to me. There’s so much to think about… I mean it took me weeks to find out which trees would be good to plant and to then collect the seeds. Luckily other permaculturists around have given me some seeds and helped out with that bit – Gerald gave me Honey Locust pods to take out the seeds, Alessandro told me about the Italian Buckthorn on the outskirts of Barcelona, and Richard gave me a bag of Jujube fruit he had collected from a tree about 10km from Boodaville.
The next step is leaving the seeds to grow over winter. They need water, they mustn’t freeze, and some sunshine would be good. Here are some of the things I thought about when I set them up like this
Near the thermal mass wall of the house to prevent freezing
Leave the crate a little bit away from the wall so none of the trees stay dry under the overhanging roof
Leave the crate directly on the ground so there is drainage and they won’t get flooded in a storm
No straw between the wall and the crate as the wall is the warm bit
Relatively wind protected location
Location that gets sun from 1pm until half an hour before sunset
Overhanging tree will also help prevent frost
Stones to help keep straw in place
The changes I made between photos 1 and 3 in your spot the difference game were the last things I adjusted.
GOOD LUCK TREE SEEDLINGS!!!!!
Thank you so much to Gerald in Albinyana for teaching me all of this!! and any comments, suggestions to people who’ve managed to read this far are very very welcome!!