Bowl of exotic tropical fruit used for the fruit tasting Cape Trib Exotic Fruit Farm at Cape Tribulation
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Cape Trib Exotic Fruit Farm at Cape Tribulation


Cape Tribulation - Permaculture at Cape Trib Exotic Fruit Farm

This permaculture plan of Cape Trib Exotic Fruit Farm will take some time to download - bear with us

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Here is a copy of our original permaculture design for Cape Trib Exotic Fruit Farm:

The farm was divided into three zones:

  • Zone 1 - around the house

  • Zone 2 - the food forest and the commercial orchard

  • Zone 3 - the tropical rainforest on the mountain side

Zone 1 was then drawn as a very detailed plan. This was done 10 years ago, when we had lots of dreams, energy and very little knowledge or experience of tropical agriculture.

The house extension has been completed, and is known as the Gazebo, a large hexagonal open space where we do the fruit tastings. The plant nursery has been located where the water garden was planned. The water garden, the dam and the pigpen are still on the backburner - well we need something to keep us going for the next 20 years.

The vegetable garden, the Chookhouse and the Citrus Orchard are all well established. The tractor pond and the rainforest trees garden have all been completed .The proposed vegetable garden extension, and vegetable garden for commercial sales are about to be planted as an orchard with more exotic fruit that we have collected in the next wet season.

Two Bed and Breakfast Cottages are being built on the boundary between zone 2 and 3. The space reserved for the plant nursery is earmarked for a commercial kitchen and a workshop.

The Orchard Guild

The drawing below shows the main guild which exists in our orchard:


The top layer

Large legume trees such as Glyricidia and Ice-cream Bean - these provide a light shade over the fruit trees and reduce the impact of the hot afternoon sun. These trees are heavily pruned at least twice a year and left in the interrows to be slashed.

The middle layer

Fruit trees are found here - both large and small - the Salaks are planted as every second row because they are much smaller. The bananas are planted into the Salak rows to provide shade while they were small and mulch for the fruit trees.

The farm has reached a level of maturity where the large legume trees are being cut out completely as they are providing too much shade for the Mangosteens. The bananas are also now competing too much with the Salaks and are being removed from the Salak rows.

The ground layer

Mainly planted to ground cover legumes such as Pinto Peanut and Desmodium. The weeds are kept under control by slashing. Our 12 month absence from the farm while we are overseas has meant that the Pintos has not been slashed regularly and in many areas is being outcompeted by a number of weeds.

For more information on how we practice permaculture read some of our farm articles and stories


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Last updated May 20, 2015