How to Make a Food Forest with Suburban Permaculture – The Renegade Health Show Episode #356

Tuesday Jul 21 | BY |
| Comments (36)

During the Pacific NW Raw Spirit event, Tom Armstrong took us through his garden…

We were amazed (to say the least) and wanted to take you through it as well.

In this episode, Tom explains the permaculture principles that have gone into the creation of his masterpiece. His suburban garden is 1/2 an acre, but you can do this literally anywhere!

Take a look…

Your question of the day: When was the last time you sat down with friends to share a great meal?

Click here, scroll down to the bottom of the page and leave your comments now!

If you’d like to check out more about Tom, please click here…

Live Awesome!

Kevin Gianni

Kevin Gianni is a health author, activist and blogger. He started seriously researching personal and preventative natural health therapies in 2002 when he was struck with the reality that cancer ran deep in his family and if he didn’t change the way he was living — he might go down that same path. Since then, he’s written and edited 6 books on the subject of natural health, diet and fitness. During this time, he’s constantly been humbled by what experts claim they know and what actually is true. This has led him to experiment with many diets and protocols — including vegan, raw food, fasting, medical treatments and more — to find out what is myth and what really works in the real world.

Kevin has also traveled around the world searching for the best protocols, foods, medicines and clinics around and bringing them to the readers of his blog — which is one of the most widely read natural health blogs in the world with hundreds of thousands of visitors a month from over 150 countries around the world.


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  1. M ary says:

    I so want to get a good garden going. I don’t have much time and now I have a small yard. Awesome garden!

  2. Yvonne says:

    Almost 2 weeks ago we had many great meals with friend. We had our annual Camp Meeting in St. Maries Idaho. It’s always the best thing that happens each year.

  3. greg says:

    Excellent, I am loving the garden feature shows. Kevin I would like to see you and Ann Marie running a major garden scene some day!

  4. Eileen says:

    Hi guys, great show – I’m off to pick our kale, swiss chard and pea pods for dinner and probably a beet too.

    I find myself cart away loads of our garden stash for others to enjoy and I have to say it’s been awhile since we’ve had friends over for the food fest of healthy eating so thanks for the encouragement.

    Miles of smiles to your door!


  5. Brenda says:

    I had a garden meal from my yard with friends on Sunday. Monday I had lunch with friends as well, not from my garden, a delicious salad. Life is good.

  6. Anabel says:

    Great Episod of Tom’s garden! We also attended this NW Raw Spirit event and thought it was great. We loved walking around the whole place. The Koi pond was also spectacular. It was especially nice to see you and Anne Marie there. 🙂

    BTW: That kelp/mineral soap I bought at Tom’s farm store must have work. I used it last night and somehow without realizing it, I did a whole bunch of stuff this morning that I’ve put off for years. It seems to have given me a very calm and pleasant energy level. Perhaps I was deficient in minerals? Who knew procrastination maybe linked to mineral deficiency. LOL

    Warmest regards,

  7. Loved this show! I live in the city, so I won’t be growing a garden anytime soon, but once I have a spot of land I definitely will. I love the wildness of allowing nature to take over.

    The food at the end looked delicious too!

  8. Kathy Thompson says:

    Now I understand why I thought Goji berries tasted like the nightshade berries that grow wild here in parts of Colorado—they ARE nightshades.

  9. Jim says:

    What a fantastic Garden! Sometimes I wish I didn’t live in the City, my garden is tiny. But do have 2 raw restaurants I can walk to, so balance the good with bad. Have a great day!

    To Your Health!
    James Reno (editor)

  10. Kristin says:

    Thanks a lot for this show…I feel the need to learn about Permaculture gnawing at the edges of my consciousness. Definitely feels right, like the next step after learning organic gardening…and, then theres vegan organic gardening too!! Will you be doing a show at the Tree of Life, esp the garden?

  11. DIXIE says:


  12. Peg says:

    This type of gardening sounds wonderful. I have been thinking about how to use these ideas in a climate that has extreme seasons. We have winters that get to minus 30 degrees and lower so for several months everything is dormant. I am always amazed that blossoms and leaves can show up after some of our winters. Anyway, gardening has to be done with that in mind. We have some wonderful organic farmers near here–they work day and night through the growing season and then put it all to bed for awhile. (and themselves, too)

    I would be interested in hearing how other gardeners adapt to their climates.

  13. Elaine says:

    Last night, in fact, we sat down with a good friend to share a meal. Fresh greens, tomatoes and cucumbers from our garden made up the salad, corn on the cob (raw for me!), and broiled salmon with peaches for dessert!
    Great show, Kevin! Thanks Tom for sharing your beautiful garden with us.

  14. Bonnie says:


  15. Smita says:

    Hi Kevin and Annmarie, I just wanted to take this time out to say that you guys have changed my life in so many ways and I am so grateful for it that I dont even have the words to explain it. I wish I discovered eating raw earlier, but I guess better late then never! THANKSSSSSSSSSSSSS so much, God has blessed you both.

  16. Trickster says:

    Saturday and Sunday. We love to eat together. Though sometimes it is long and far between.

    For those of you with extreme climate changes (and every one else) I recommend the book :

    Four-Season Harvest
    Organic Vegetables from your home garden all year long

    by Eliot Coleman

  17. Yvonne says:

    Thanks, for this show. It is more than great!

  18. jane says:

    lunchtime yesterday whole fresh ripe raw organic local eats being the main topic of conversation and how the world is opening up to people becoming more honourable, gentle and wholesome rather like our good food.

  19. jane says:

    lunchtime yesterday whole fresh ripe raw organic local eats being the main topic of conversation and how the world is opening up to people becoming more honourable, gentle and wholesome rather like our good food.
    P.S. – Sorry, forgot to tell you great post!

  20. Susan Bessette says:

    Tomorrow our neighbor is having us over for a dinner from her garden. I’m taking raw zucchini/cucumber soup plus raw hummus (and marguaritas).
    I compost all the clippings from my gardens and raise worms in the Can-O-Worms which gives me worm tea and castings. Mainly I’m trying to turn our brick-quality Virginia clay into soil. My flowers are glorious, but the veggies are sorry. Each time I go to the farmer’s market I wonder why I bother, since I can get such wonderful veggies from awesome people.

  21. susie says:

    Kevin (or others)
    What do think about Pluots?

  22. Meri says:

    Oh man, that was an awesome show! What a truly impressive garden they’ve got going on there. I would love to learn how to do that. Looks like permaculture is the future of food!

  23. C.S. says:

    We have three great meals with family and friends each and every Sabbath. Highly recommended!

  24. Peter says:

    Wow, that was such a great clip! Who has read the Ringing Cedars series (Anastasia)? This is right from the book! Folks, this – what Tom is doing with his large, layered, permaculture garden – is where humanity is headed!

  25. Pamme says:

    Permaculture rocks… check out the book Gaia’s Garden by Tobey Hemenway. New Edition out this year with a new chapter on Urban Gardening… for those of you who say you live in the city (like me) and can’t garden.

    We have a meet-up group ( and regular raw & living potlucks! I’m having a friend over tonight and making a “Soft Corn Tortillas with Spicy “Beans” (from sunflower seeds), avocado-corn guacamole, and tomato-lime salsa… recipe from book Raw Food Real World by Matthey Kenney & Sarma Melngailis. I try to eat more of an 80/10/10 diet but it’s always fun to do a little gourmet raw!

    If you don’t have a meet-up group in your area, you should start one… it’s easy! And it’s a great way to build community and get support for your raw lifestyle!


  26. Marie says:

    Thanks Kevin! Awesome garden! We have a small one in my backyard, mostly cucumbers, tomatoes, and zucchini. Is there a fruit or veggie that you will NOT eat?

  27. John says:

    I want to know how they handle weeds? Do they get any? Do they just not believe in weeds and make use of everything? I have some things that just take over if I don’t constantly keep pulling them out but I want an easier way and some way of dealing with them when I am on vacation also. Ideas???

  28. freddie mcCrimmon says:

    freddie 1:50 am on july 23,2009 I love every thing I seen in the garden I,m trying too get my place like that. thank Kevin.

  29. natalya says:

    I’d like to see more episodes like this one about gardens. It makes me naturally happy.
    I eat outside everyday in my small, but very cute garden with my family and friends sometimes. Just yesterday we had a Birthday party for my daughter in this garden.

  30. Lisa says:

    This is awesome! Right now I have a lousy yard for gardening, mostly because it’s been poisoned by some idiot who thought railroad ties were a good landscaping idea. Planning to move soon though and garden space is a definite prerequisite! Thanks for your awesome show and I love you guys!

  31. Deborah Gordon says:

    WOOHOO!!! Tom Armstrong. He’s the one who started me on raw food. Good to see him!!

  32. this video reminds me of my hippie days back in the 60’s. i am so far from that now. sold out. would love 2 get back 2 the earth. i am supremely happy 2 get UR videos. they R inspirational. thanks. by the way, how do i find the answers? i am just getting in 2 stuff like this, blogging or whatever it is called 🙁

  33. Gustoso says:

    FYI – here’s a list of Trees for a suburban food forest:

    Thanks for the great video.

  34. Margaret says:

    I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


  35. Veronika says:

    I agree, I would love to see more videos like this about permaculture and gardening. So inspiring!!

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