Transforming the common approach to landscaping

Edible Landscaping at its best builds and balances healthy ecology.  A foundation of this is soil health.  On every site I have visited, in hundreds of individual landscapes around the Atlanta- Decatur area, depleted soil is a major issue.  Past use, current neglect, and harmful practices like chemical spraying have lead to retracted or depleted life in the soil.

Current, traditional landscaping methods are insufficient to handle the issue of balanced ecology (they are often detrimental), and do virtually nothing to support soil life and health.

We are transforming the process of landscaping- or perhaps just improving the existing framework-  to address the fundamental issue of soil health as a basis for general garden health.  What I think this is going to entail is beginning to address soil fertility at the onset of the design process, continuing through implementation.  As some larger projects- from inception, design to execution- can last a year at most, we are getting a good start on building/ supporting fertility.   This is an improvement  on the typical ‘bang-out’ install work that last 3 weeks for the same project- where are left with a brand-spanking new LOOKING landscape, with not much reserves for it to thrive.

How will we build fertility?  Through my favorite methods of sustainable agriculture: encouraging biodiversity, utilizing teas (worm castings, compost teas, biodynamic sprays) and starting an excellent composting system upfront on the property in question.

Below is a sample proposal for a residential landscape that addresses the above concerns:

Landscape consultation and design

–   Site visits and consultation

–   Site inventory and analysis; considering aspect, light, moisture, existing culture

–   Concept sketches for review and final drawing with site design

–   Drawings indicating cohesive design for phased implementation

–   Plant and material variety selections with sourcing information

–  General care and maintenance specifications

Soil fertility and land preparation

Over time we have realized the need to amend the traditional landscaping process of design and installation.  Ecological balance and overall garden health takes time to achieve, as so many of our landscapes do not already exhibit balance.  We feel it is better to begin as early as possible to work with nature to build a foundation of health.  The methods below are found to be superior ways to achieve this:

–          Minimum of 3 biodynamic sprays over the next year to improve soil health and general well-being of site

–          Working with client to devise composting system for tea, worm castings, etc to build fertility

–          Geomantic assessment and facilitating a co-creative partnership with nature, including earth healing processes such as Machaelle Small Wright’s energy cleansing, battle release and soil balancing work.  To 2 site visits with Diana and Lindsey

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