Grow Food, Harvest Change
What does “Grow Food, Harvest Change” mean?
Here at Harvest Nursery, we believe that growing your own food (the #GrowYourOwn movement) is one of the few things we can do to change the world we live in.
By not buying toxic food products that are sold to us as real food, we are voting with our wallets.
Helping others to do the same by becoming a resource for edible plants at affordable prices is our way of paying it forward. Because when it comes right down to it, everyone has the right to eat nutritious, healthy food and there’s no reason why food should not be free (which is why we also support the #FoodIsFree movement.)
What is Permaculture & What Are Permaculture Practices?
Permaculture is a creative design process based on whole-systems thinking informed by ethics and design principles that were developed by Bill Mollison. It’s core ethics are based on Earth Care, People Care, and Fair Share (or Return of Surplus).
This approach guides us to mimic the patterns and relationships we can find in nature and can be applied to all aspects of human habitation, from agriculture to ecological building, from appropriate technology to education and even economics. By adopting the ethics and applying these principles in our daily life we can make the transition from being dependent consumers to becoming responsible producers.
What does this mean to you the plant buyer? It means that:
- Our plants are not genetically modified (No GMOs);
- Our plants are fertilized with manures and compost teas, not chemical fertilizers (No chemicals);
- We use insectary plants and things like Neem oil to control insect pests, not chemical insecticides (No chemicals);
- We are actively building soil instead of eroding it, which means we are also capturing carbon and helping combat climate change (Low Carbon Footprint, Sustainable Agriculture)
Free Permaculture Design Services
We would love to help you design your Permaculture garden. Just call/text/email us at (503) 459-1489 to make an appointment. We will need you to bring to your appointment a drawing of the area you wish to plant with info about light direction, major shade trees or structures and slope of the land. That info combined with your tastes, goals, interests and budget will enable us to design a permaculture garden that can be planted immediately or done in stages. You can #GrowYour OwnFood and we can help you make it happen!
Paid Permaculture Design Services
While many people only need help with figuring out what and where to plant in their Permaculture garden, others actually need a full redesign from top to bottom of their property. This is a much more detailed and comprehensive version of Permaculture Design and may include earthworks, zone design and much more. Because of the amount of time involved in this type of design, we have to charge an hourly rate for it. However, you will end up with a comprehensive Permaculture Design for your property and a 10% discount on your first purchase of plants from us. If this is what you are looking for call/text/email us at (503) 459-1489 to schedule a consultation at your site. You can #GrowYour OwnFood and we can help you make it happen!
Just because it is organic doesn’t mean it’s good for the environmentGeoff Lawton
Our #GrowYourOwn Story
We believe that our story is a #GrowYourOwn story and much of it is similar to most of your stories. How do we know? Because we hear this story every day from our customers. Maybe you will recognize your own story while reading it.
It all started with not feeling good. When we started looking into why, we realized it might just be the food we were eating. So we looked for better options to buy, they were hard to find and expensive. When our wallets told us we couldn’t afford to eat better store bought food, decided to grow our own food. Once we did, we realized how much better our food was than grocery store food (even organic).
After a few years of growing our own food, we looked into better ways to #GrowYourOwn and discovered Permaculture. Permaculturists talk about all kinds of cool things like food forests and perennial vegetables, but when we went to buy these plants at local nurseries they either didn’t exist or if they did exist, our wallets couldn’t afford them.
Again, we decided to grow our own, but this time we thought “Hey, maybe there are other people out there looking to grow their own food and they can’t find or afford these plants either!” So we started an edible plant nursery, one based on permaculture ethics, using permaculture growing practices.
And a funny thing happened along the way, we realized that not only were we making our own lives better, we were making the environment better and helping to combat climate change. And with every plant we sold we were making our customers lives better and educating them on permaculture, so they were helping combat climate change. And we were making our employees lives better by paying them a living wage and educating them on permaculture.
The story of Harvest Nursery and its owners Gabriel Kahn & Brigitte Eaton is not a “let’s start a company and make lots of money” story, it’s a story about two people who started out trying to improve their own lives and ended up on the forefront of helping change this world for better. We hope you’ll join your story with our story because together we will make this world a better place, one story at a time.
Our Permaculture Values
Care for the Earth
The Earth is a living, breathing entity. Without ongoing care and nurturing there will be consequences too big to ignore. We are already seeing these consequences in climate change. We practice this principle by caring for the living soil. The state of the soil is often the best measure for the health and well-being of society. We are constantly building soil: manure, compost, green manure, chop & drop, and coppicing are just a few of the tools we use to achieve this. We also apply compost teas w/microbes (EM), myco-fungi, worm castings in order to feed the soil. Along with trying to reduce our consumption by putting in solar panels and water storage.
Care for People
People Care begins with ourselves and expands to include our families, neighbours and wider communities. The challenge is to grow through self-reliance and personal responsibility. Self-reliance becomes more feasible when we focus on non-material well-being, taking care of ourselves and others without producing or consuming unnecessary material resources. We practice this principle by selling our plants at prices that keep our business running while keeping them affordable. Because while all gardeners want more plants, some of our customers need more plants to feed their families.
Return of Surplus
If we plant carrots in our garden, those carrots will remove nutrients and water from the soil in order to grow. When we harvest those carrots to eat them, we are removing those nutrients from the soil permanently. In a permaculture system, we know that if we take something out, we need to put something back. So, in our carrot example, we bury our kitchen compost in that carrot bed and water it in well. The garden is back in balance. If we don’t give surplus back, the system will not be self-sustaining. This doesn’t apply just to the soil, it also applies to all of our systems. We practice this principle by selling extra plants at discounted prices, composting, mulching cut grass, leaving weeds to rot back into the soil and sharing our excess produce.
Harvest Nursery is founded on the above three principles. We practice them by growing our plants sustainably, selling our plants affordably, and educating our customers and employees about permaculture. While we have been doing a lot in this area, we could be doing so much more, by offering classes, PDCs, internships, and volunteer positions. Look for us to expand and make announcements about offerings in this area soon.
About Harvest Nursery Partnership
Harvest Nursery is an Oregon Partnership formed between Gabriel Kahn and Brigitte Eaton. After several years of running Harvest Nursery Portland, Gabriel & Brigitte decided to move their operation to 40 acres in Molalla. This enabled them to start putting permaculture practices to work on a large scale by planting acres of food forests. It also allowed them to expand nursery production so that they can grow more of their own plants and carry even more plants. It will also allow them to expand more into the area of permaculture education.
Gabriel has 20+ years of landscape experience along with 5+ years of nursery experience. In 2015 he received his Permaculture Design Certificate. Gabriel has been specializing in edible plants for the last 4 years and he continues to look for new and exciting varieties to add to his collection and the nursery. His expertise on growing edible plants has long been appreciated by his loyal customers who often come to the nursery for assistance in planning and implementing their own food forests. While no longer on the front lines of sales, Gabriel is usually somewhere in the nursery and is always available for questions and gardening advice.
Brigitte is the the technical/research arm of the partnership. She already experienced her 15 minutes of fame back in 2000 when she was one of the first bloggers and ran the eatonweb blog portal. She now applies her web design and research skills to gardening and permaculture. Brigitte received her Permaculture Design Certificate in 2015 from Geoff Lawton after almost a decade of studying and utilizing permaculture practices in her gardens. When she can get away from the computer, she can often be seen around the nursery and gardens with her two children.
How to find us
13488 S. Groshong Rd.
Molalla, OR 97038
Regular Hours: 10am-5:30pm, 7 days
Winter Hours (Nov-Jan): 9am-4pm, 7 days
Only 5 miles East of Scotts Mills
Only 6 miles South of Molalla
Only 11 miles North of Silverton
Only 21 miles South of Oregon City
Only 21 miles East of Salem
Only 31 miles South of Portland
Only 41 miles South of Vancouver