iACT Case Study / Centre Profile Template
ESSENTIAL INFORMATION ON YOUR PROJECT
Centre Name: Naturplanteskolen (Natures Edible Plant Nursery)
Contact Name and E-mail: Eulàlia Martí, firstname.lastname@example.org
Location(s): Stærkendevej 177 2640 Hedehusene, Denmark
Type of Centre – (Please briefly describe):
Organic nursery, education and inspiration center, edible forest garden, farmshop, café, LANDcenter
Vision & Aims (or Mission):
In a few words, Naturplanteskolen’s mission is to inspire and assist gardens all around Denmark to become more edible, biodiverse and nature-friendly.
Summary of the focus, capabilities or specialisms, key demonstration features of the project, types of learning offerings and activities, etc:
At Naturplanteskolen we produce and sell over 400 different edible perennial plants.
The nursery is located on a 16.000 m2 piece of land in the countryside (but close to the capital, Copenhaguen) that we manage with permaculture principles. There are several demonstrations of well functioning hügelbeds, no-dig gardening, swales, ponds, fruit and berry gardens and a very rich natural life. There is also a compost area, a compost toilet and a woodfired outdoor oven that are used under the many events happening during the year. We hold special events with market stands,
talks, workshops and guided tours as well as intensive courses and workshops on issues like perennial vegetables, plant multiplication or forest gardens among others. We also offer counselling on natural gardening and do garden planning and designs of edible gardens for both private and public customers.
We produce and sell seeds of over 100 different edible plants.
Many of our farm shop products and seeds are sold via a webshop from our homepage.
Size of centre (sqM/ hectares): 1,6 hectares
Number of people providing education services (employees, contractors, collaborators, volunteers):
Our team varies during the different seasons of the year. Altogether, there are 5 employees, one or two long-term trainees, several short-term trainees and volunteers beside the owner and leader of the place. Beside that, there is a support organization (naturplateskolensvenner.dk) with around 80 members.
Types of audiences you are catering for:
Garden owners, housing associations, municipalities, and other people interested in self-sufficiency, in natural lifestyles, in holistic solutions… and everybody else who care for more sustainable ways forward…
Date Established: 1-5-2013
Climate: Humid temperate
What networks are you a member of or what affiliations do you have?:
- Permakultur Danmark
- Praktisk økologi
- Among others
STORIES ABOUT YOUR CENTRE:
Each of the questions in this section are optional – answers will help us create a deeper, more valuable case study.
History of the center: Describe the center’s development focusing on key milestones and highlighting significant shifts or challenges.
Naturplanteskolen is Denmarks first and also the largest producer and supplier of perennial vegetables, as well as other edible herbs, bushes and trees. It is established in 2013 by MSc, PhD in horticulture, Aiah Noack, after having attended a PDC in 2010. She is a professional entrepreneur in the plant world with life experiences in other countries like Iceland, New Zealand and South Africa. Over the years she has a detailed knowledge of botany and plant growing as well as skills and experience of plant production, nursery establishment and management, marketing, business development and a strong vision for her endeavours. In 2014 Naturplanteskolen became accredited as a permaculture LAND center. From 2015 it offered courses in permaculture and horticultural subjects as well as old handmade crafts and techniques.
In 2016 it added a farm shop.
In 2018 Naturplanteskolen became certified as an organic plant producer. In 2020 it added a sustainable wood fired clay oven in the garden for bread and pizza making.
In 2021 it opened a café.
- Naturplanteskolen is established at the former land and buildings of Aiahs parents, her childhood place. It was a huge turnaround from her parents 50 years of machine based and monoculture lifestyle to the permaculture human based working methods, reading the land and nature, letting go of much of the control of the land which instantly produced much biodiversity and allowing for slow and heartfelt solutions.
- The groundwater levels in the surrounding conventional farming area has risen with 1 meter since Aiahs childhood days and regular winter floods of the garden became an obvious challenge for developing a forest garden- the water coming from the groundwater level as well as the depleted farmland.
Management of rainwater as a resource rather than a waste product is still a major job and influences every design detail of the garden.
- In 2021 the pet name of the forest garden at Naturplanteskolen has become Insects Paradise, which makes for the abundance and diversity that has developed from hardly any insect, bird or wildlife at the start in 2013. Many visitors and customers find it attractive, relaxing and inspiring to visit a living edible, climate resistant and biodiverse garden.