Prepping Positively

The Ground Cover Layer, the Vines Layer and the Root Layer of the Food Forest

August 22, 2022 Ann Marie Season 1 Episode 14
Prepping Positively
The Ground Cover Layer, the Vines Layer and the Root Layer of the Food Forest
Show Notes Transcript

In this episode we will discuss the last three layers of your food forest and what should be planted in them.

Episode 14 PP

The Ground Cover, Vine Layer and Root Layer of the Food Forest

If you are following along as we talk about creating a food forest on your property, today is the day we discuss the last three layers of the food forest - the ground cover layer, the vines layer and the root layer.

Here we go...

Hi and welcome back to the Prepping Positively podcast. I’m Annie and today we are talking about the last three layers of your food forest.

If you are tuning in for the first time you may want to go back to Episode 11 when we started talking about the food forest.

So this week is all about the last three layers of your food forest. Let’s start with the ground cover layer.

This layer is filled with edible plants that basically spread horizontally along the ground. Some good examples in this layer would be strawberries, clover, and creeping thyme.

These plants act as a blanket on the floor of your food forest and can really help to keep the weeds at a minimum in some cases.

Any plant that is edible that acts as a ground cover can be used. You have to pick what grows well in your growing zone.

The next layer is the vines. This layer includes edibles that grow up or on other plants and trees. These plants can also be grown on trellises or fences too. Grapes, kiwi, and passionflower are all great examples.

The difference between this layer and the ground cover layer is that this layer grows up and on other obstacles whereas the ground cover layer stays along the soil of the forest.

You can grow squash, beans, and some melons on trellises or fences in this layer. If you grow squash or melon on the ground then they would be your ground cover layer.

These two layers are versatile and you can interchange plants here. I often grow Hops and allow it to grow around the trees or fences. That makes the hops part of my vine layer. Edible flowers are a great addition to the ground cover layer.

When planting the vines layer, make sure that the surrounding plants and trees are strong enough to hold the weight of the vines when they are bearing fruit. Also make sure the vine will not suffocate the plant it is growing on.

Here in Florida we have wild grape vines that produce abundant grapes. However, if we let them run wild they can take over and completely suffocate an entire tree. So keep this in mind.

The last layer is the roots layer. These are all of the edible plants that are harvested for their roots. Examples are radishes, kohlrabi, turnips, potatoes, carrots, onions, and garlic.

There is a lot of options here. Allow enough room though so that all of the plants have at least some breathing room.

Ok so we have covered the general ideas of each of the layers of the food forest. Be sure to do your research when choosing plants so that you know how much sun, water, and what type of soil and nutrients they need before you just jump in.

Next week we will discuss watering your food forest and the different options you have. For now, start thinking about your food forest, what you can plant in it, and what you need to purchase to get started.

See you next week!