A forest garden is a way of gardening with multi-year (perennial) plants and trees by simulating a starting forest. A big advantage is that it takes relatively less maintenance and also humus and soil life is stimulated. Unfortunately one-year (annual) vegetables is what we cultivate on our fields and in our gardens, while these ask relatively a lot of minerals and a lot of work (clear the ground, plant, give a lot of water, add compost after yielding, etc.). Forest gardening is not permaculture, but forest gardening is actually a more "permanent" and less disturbing way of gardening than the one-year gardening which is often a big part of permaculture.
A forest garden is explicitly about a starting forest, because in a full-grown forest in our climate the trees give too much shadow. So it is quite normal that big trees are about 20 meters from each other. So we simulate the edge of a forest and not a full-grown forest, which has more advantages because most of the life and the biggest species diversity in the transition zones.
A forest garden thrives with diversity. In the forest garden at Strohplatz there will eventually be about 250 different species of plants and trees, covering all layers of vegetation. Worldwilde there are thousands of edible plants and fruits, of which we see about 15 in the supermarket. Walking in the forest garden of Strohplatz will be a pleasent surprise, and hopefully a stimulance to grow more perrenial crops.
No forest garden courses are scheduled at this moment. You can arrange for your own society a one day course, focussed on forest gardens and knowledge about the soil. For multi-day courses you can visit Strohplatz in the near future. Please contact by e-mail strohplatz _at_ strohplatz.com for more details.