Jake Rayson of Forest Garden Wales has recently posted a wonderful online video on the subject of wild flowers, accessible here on his Backyard Forest Youtube channel. Wild flowers provide shelter, habitat and food for all manner of wildlife and proving plenty of wild biomass and biodiversity is the best way to support and enhance a healthy localised ecosystem in the garden. Jake’s enthusiasm is infectious and he has a great deal of interesting information as well. Do check out the video.
As an example of wild flowers that can easily live in a forest garden I have just published a post over on my other blog (because most of my relevant pictures are stored on that site and not this one). I found 19 pictures and remembered a further 31 wild plants making a total of 50 for last year – and there may well have been more than that.
Jake emphasises – and I totally agree – that the forest gardener is gardening for all of life.
“But the forest gardener is operating from a different paradigm and is endeavouring to support an ecosystem. In this ecosystem everything has a function and is an integral part of a single complex unity. The forest gardener is learning not to just turn a blind eye to the wild plants (the weeds), but is beginning to appreciate their value as living beings contributing to the forest garden and having their own purpose and place within this world. This does not mean that every wild plant that arrives in the forest garden should stay indefinitely, but it definitely does mean that they should not automatically be removed without a second thought. In time the forest gardener will recognise the wild plant as a gift, an opportunity, a delight, as beautiful and as an intrinsic part of this place.”
the garden of equal delights page 42-3