Newly-planted food forest to provide healthy food to First Nation
- EFN Staff | October 17, 2018
The Muskeg Lake Cree Nation hopes its new food forest will provide healthy food for its community.
Earlier this week, Muskeg Lake Cree Nation marked its new food forest partnership with Canadian Feed The Children as community members planted apple trees, berry bushes, and a variety of complementary trees to attract birds and pollinators.
The food forest has been designed using innovative permaculture design, which will help provide greater and sustainable healthy food access for the community.
“This food forest is an innovative approach to developing greater food security and sovereignty in Muskeg Lake Cree Nation,” says Glenna Cayen, Community Program Coordinator, Canadian Feed The Children. “We hope in the future that this space not only provides a sustainable source of good food but that it also becomes a community meeting space for youth, adults and seniors that will centre on health and wellness.”
Along with the partnership, the food forest is funded in part by the Slaight Family Foundation and the Newall Family Foundation. The community-led initiative was designed with support from Steven Wiig from Holistic Landscape and Design, who promotes a nature-inspired design system known as permaculture. Permaculture is founded on lessons observed in nature and from traditional practices, which have evolved into three core ethics and 12 design principles that can be applied to create systems which support nature, while providing for community needs in a sustainable and regenerative way.
Muskeg Lake’s food forest will include apples, berries, pears, plums, cherries, Saskatoon berries, strawberries, raspberries, cranberries, sea buckthorn, and haskaps.
There are future plans to include a playscape for children, walking trails, an Elder’s gathering area, a year-round solar and wind powered greenhouse, water catchment, outdoor cooking with cobb oven, and compost site.