My Mom, Terrea Zumeta, was my first teacher in gardening, and helped inspire my love of helping things grow. People always said we had the most beautiful garden on the block, and she seemed to always find joy and inspiration there, even when things were dark for her and the family. She encouraged and helped me in starting my “landscaping business” at age 12, and lined up my sole client (our neighbor and my little brother’s babysitter. Mom worked for 40 years as a nurse, mostly in psychiatric care, and it broke her body down, taking an enormous emotional and psychological toll on her as well. Still, she always loved the living world, and was immensely generous to pretty much anyone, including my siblings and I. I would not be where I am without her on so many levels, and am eternally grateful for my Mom. She passed away in July, 2020, before she could visit the 25acres my wife and I purchased with her generous support (Dad also helped generously, but he’s thankfully still around to see it!).
Mom planted and did so much for me and my siblings. So, I have dedicated everything I’ve planted since her passing to my Mom. This includes pretty much everything in the videos, as we had just settled in a few months before she died. As of 5/1/2022, the TZFF includes over 300 fruit and nut trees planted, a similar number of smaller perennials , and hundreds of nitrogen fixators and pollinator supporters.
Mom raised her kids to do what they love while doing good, and in this spirit the food forest will be the home of Old Growth Orchard and Nursery. This will be a membership based you-pick and perennial plant propagation hub. This video is as much a “before” video as anything I have other than the video tour I made for Mom when we were just closing on the place. The camera work leaves a lot of room for improvement, but it was good to get this snapshot in time with my rambling free associations at the moment overlayed.
The basic idea is diversity in every dimension, allowing for successful succession to a climax old-growth edible forest, one way or another:
Part 1 (zone 5 inwards to zone 3 - native forest, walnuts, chestnuts, mulberry, and oaks):
Part 2 (zone 4-3 - oaks, chesnuts, stonefruit, pomefruit, mulberries, cherries and much more)
Part 3 (zone 3 inwards to zone 1 kitchen garden, blueberry key-hugel, nursery, inner food forest): https://youtu.be/vZXbserquxA