Boundaries and principles

We explored our boundaries and applied Holmgren’s design principles to come up with ways of working with them.

Personal and forest garden group

Observe and interact – take our time in learning about permaculture design and forest gardening by forest garden film nights, having sessions introducing permaculture design for the group, design support from Brighton Permaculture Trust, going on forest gardening courses with Brighton Permaculture Trust and/or the Agroforestry Research Trust or elsewhere, visiting forest gardens

Small and slow solutions – design the implementation to take account of limited time and resources

Ownership – Hoathly Hill Trust

Integrate rather than segregate / Catch and store energy Рthe owners of the lease of the site are willing to accept and support the Forest Garden Initiative as a Trust project meeting its aims of education, which in turn provides the initiative with a piece of land and an official structure to facilitate funding applications, we value and use this connection

Principle human users – Hoathly Hill Community

Observe and interact – essential principle for beginning a project, we took time to observe and continue to do so and interact conscious of what is and what might be

Integrate rather than segregate / Self-regulate and accept feedback / Value diversity / Creatively use and respond to change – all these, and others, were valuable principles for the community consultation process

Design from pattern to detail – great principle for community design process, we invited participation in the pattern of the design and then designed the details in a smaller group or even individually, again the implementation requires a large group for the bigger projects, small for smaller projects

Larger animal users – deer and rabbits

Use edges and value the marginal / Obtain a yield – we had existing rabbit proof fencing in need of repair, rabbit and deer fencing is widely used in the area to protect food growing areas in order to obtain a yield, we explore types of edge and value those crossing them

The elements and the physical borders

Catch and store energy / Use and value renewables / Produce no waste – we explore the sun, wind and water sectors on the site and design to apply these principles, we are aware of the physical borders and beyond them, capturing the sun in our planting plan, but not shading what is beyond the borders, working with contours to catch water on the slope, recognising the potential of the compost area next door, leaving space between hedges and pasture animals