One-acre garden provides fruit, veggies and eggs for 50 families with very little labor
More and more people are learning growing food doesn’t have to be hard work. When you work with nature instead of against it, it does much of the work for you.
It’s called permaculture. While permaculture gardens require a year or two of work up front — mostly restoring land laid waste by agriculture — once they are set up, they almost tend themselves.
Limestone Permaculture Farm in New South Wales, Australia, is a shining example of how permaculture is not only the easiest way to grow food, it’s also the most productive, in the long run.
The one-acre farm supplies fruits, veggies and eggs for 50 families by using practices that regenerate soil rather than strip it of its nutrients.
One of the first principles of permaculture is not tilling the soil, which kills all the microorganisms that keep it alive.
Limestone uses raised “no-dig” or “no-till” garden beds for his annual crops in conjunction with “swales” — ditches full of perrenial plants around the beds that hold water like a sponge.
The edible ground cover plants are self-seeding, and the only “tilling” that needs to be done is done by chickens, whose manure also fertilizes the soil.
After a couple years of work, Limestone’s co-owner Brett Cooper says his super-productive farm is almost taking care of itself: