Building a Food Forest Scotland

East Ayrshire, Scotland

In the rolling hills of Scotland, there is a unique garden, or rather, a collection of garden areas where Katrina and Clayton are growing and learning every day. This mother and son duo has transformed the plain, grassy areas into a thriving forest garden with a practical permaculture design from dad, Peter. Clayton, who is Autistic and non-verbal, has developed a keen interest in the garden and is happiest when planting seeds, potting up and watering what he has grown. This year, Clayton completed the Grow and Learn Course with the Royal Caledonian Horticultural Society. Their Kitchen Courtyard Garden is full of herbs and salads. A beautiful, practical vertical garden is in this area, too; a black fencing that retains the heat with 132 milk cartons attached on a curtain rail planted out with the season’s food. One of the slopes separating tiers of the garden is in the process of becoming a full lavender hedge for a wonderful sensory experience, all grown from seed on the windowsills around the house. In Scotland, the deer stroll across the garden daily, and all the beds must be surrounded with cages to protect the crops. There is a beautiful balance between respecting the native species and designing the garden for the healing and mindful use of humans.

Be sure to check out Katrina and Clayton’s YouTube channel: youtube.com/@buildingafoodforest_Scotland

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Vegetable grower, natural beekeeper and edible spaces designer. Lover of all soil and urban farming techniques. Former head of growing at Incredible Aquagarden.