Rent Shop Volunteer Join

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Monday - February 04, 2013

From: Livermore, CA
Region: California
Topic: Wildlife Gardens, Herbs/Forbs, Trees
Title: Interested in a mini food forest
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

I am interested in starting a mini "food forest" in a twelve foot by twelve foot patch of earth next to my house. I'd like to put a focus on making sure that the bulk of the plants I introduce are both native to the area and edible. Which plants might be great for this?

ANSWER:

Until he received your question , Mr. Smarty Plants was unfamiliar the concept of a “food forest”, so off he went to the internet. One of the first articles found told about the Hazelwood Food Forest project in Pittsburg that measures 90’ x 100’, or about 0.25 acres.  Your proposed plot (about 0.00306 acres) seemed a bit too small. However, an article at natural news.com  indicates that one can establish a food forest in the back yard. This is corroborated by this link .

The other sources that were found deal with how-to articles and plant lists to consider.

How to articles

 wilderness college.com  a good how and why article

Plant lists

  theodorepayne.org  

  California Native Plant Society 

  plantsofcalifornia.com 

Good luck with your project!

 

More Wildlife Gardens Questions

Forage plants for deer in Central Texas
December 06, 2014 - Looking for best forage plants and seed for deer forage, Canyon Lake-New Braunfels, Tx. Have searched listings, but areas are NE or other and not relevant to my location. Your time much appreciated. ...
view the full question and answer

Wildlife garden for Austin
May 19, 2013 - I am trying to make my backyard more wildlife friendly. I have pecan trees for the canopy and some understory shrub/trees like rough leaf dogwood and redbud. I am having a really hard time finding sui...
view the full question and answer

Replacing Nandina with natives for a schoolyard in Washington DC
May 11, 2011 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, Our schoolyard now has some invasive plants in the landscaping that we would like to replace with native plants. We have four clumps of Nandina planted at each pillar along a...
view the full question and answer

Hungry turtles trample pond in Houston Texas
October 17, 2011 - I have a very large back yard pond (actually, a former swimming pool) that's home to a bullfrog, four Red-eared slider turtles, and scads of gambusia (little mosquito eating fish). I'd like to add n...
view the full question and answer

Plant for deep shade in Pennsylvania
April 09, 2013 - Hi! I am landscaping our house and trying to use only plants that provide seasonal benefit to bees, butterflies, birds etc. not the deer though. My question is that I have a fairly steep slope of abou...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.