We can think of at least 180 great forest garden & perennial crops for cold climate Sweden. Want to hear about them? Over the course of the next year we will profile 5 a week on the blog. Perennial plants and crops offer a low energy, oil & resource input based foundation for future-proof agricultures. By default if an agriculture is to be called regenerative the bottom line is that it must be soil building, not soil depleting. Relentless deep tillage & poor soil husbandry (wifery?!) contributes to the majority of the 24 billion tons of topsoil lost every year on planet water. We are going to be focused on holistic polyculture grazing and perennial production at ridgedale over most of the site as this represents the most effective way to restore our degraded landscape, produce high value produce and ensure the future resource base we are managing holistically for in our decision making.
Common Name false indigo
Origin North America
Moisture wet to dry
Amorpha fruticosa is a species of flowering plant in the legume family (Fabaceae) known by several common names, including desert false indigo, false indigo-bush, and bastard indigobush. It is found wild in most of the contiguous United States, southeastern Canada, and northern Mexico, but it is probably naturalized in the northeastern and northwestern portion of its current range. The species is also present as an introduced species in Europe, Asia, and other continents.
A. fruticosa grows as a glandular, thornless shrub which can reach 5 or 6 meters in height and spread to twice that in width. The fruit is a legume pod containing one or two seeds.
Plants have an extensive root system and are also fairly wind tolerant, they can be planted as a windbreak and also to prevent soil erosion. Resinous pustules on the plant contain 'amorpha', a contact and stomachic insecticide that also acts as an insect repellent. The stems are used as bedding. The plant contains some indigo pigment and can be used to make a blue dye. Unfortunately, the pigment is only present in very small quantities, there is not enough to harvest commercially.
A hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to about -25C, it will only be appropriate for certain regions of Sweden. A polymorphic species, there are many named forms. The flowers have a vanilla perfume. Plants resent root disturbance, they should be planted out into their final positions whilst small. False Indigo is a Nitrogen fixer. Other uses have included;
Bedding, Dye, Insecticide, Oil, Repellent, Shelterbelt, Soil stabilization
OUR FRIENDS AT PFAF HAVE AN AMAZING DATABASE OF SPECIES (UK BASED);
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