Project: Tsirgumäe Food Forest

The beginning 

It all started when Aurora saw the first light of Mother Gaia – born in Northern Norway, her favourite food was berries and fruits. But in this place was impossible to grow something nutritious for her. Of course, people had their greenhouses, and everything is possible, when you try hard enough, but for us it was too complicated. We were used to pick the apples in autumn and gather wild herbs and medicinal plants throughout the summer, but there it was only a dream. We wished to give the best and healthiest food our daughter and the best way to get it, is to grow it by ourselves – so the plan to move back to Estonia and start again living from the land ripened every day.

Eliise’s mother had a farm close to Tallinn, where we first moved and built our own wonderful forest cabin there. But our views how to grow something by ourselves were very different with her. Place itself didn’t meet our requirements as well –   we had a strawberry plantation next to our lands, where they used fertilizers. We decided to sell the farm and move to South Estonia – we bought here two farms, one for Eliise´s mother and one for our little family. Our farm has 11 hectares of land but no forest, just a grassland with few animals and birds. We never had a plan to own such vast area of land. When we moved in and had settled in, we started to think:

„What´s next?
What the hell we do with this land, where is no trees, no bushes, only grass and hay? “

The plan was to put it to work for us. But how? Start growing some monoculture? Grow some forest? Rent it out like people usually do with grasslands? Previous owners rented it out, local cattle farmers were growing on this land ecological grass for their herd and they mow the hay only once a year – this was ok by our views, so we decided to rent it out until we have some better idea.

Apple tree with shiitake mushrooms

And then the idea came

It came together with Rainbow Gathering of they were kicked out from the first place because of suspicions of corona and they needed to quickly find some place to move. We offered that they are welcome in our home, so for the 3 days (some more) we had a wonderful gathering right in our yard before they found a place in the forest. Before that we had lived in our farm maybe 3 months and we didn´t feel yet that this is our home, but with Rainbow Family also came the feeling, that now we are home at last. The most important part was missing the family all around the world, together with the family we got the idea to plant a food forest. This was the best plan and from that moment we started to work with this idea.

The first one who told that idea out loud, was Alexander Kukk from Germany – he is still living with us and is part of our team. He has made similar projects before in Germany and he knows a lot about permaculture, agroforestry, and food forest. From that moment everything started moving fast, all the pieces went together – you know when you do the right thing, then universe is supporting also. 

We are building the team and making the plans right now, also for the future. We made NGO Tsirgumäe Food Forest, what will start planting the life changing food forest. We have the idea to teach and learn together from the process. In the world, the human population have made so much damage to The Earth, and now we have a chance to give some back.

Our food forest would have one day everything what needed

11ha is 27 acres land, so we have possibility to create one of the biggest food forests in North-Europe. Our lands are in 57 latitude north, so we have winters with -25°C or more, very dark winters with lot of snow. Last year’s we did not have much snow, but Earth is constantly changing due to human activity and natural processes. We hope it will not change too fast to worse and we have bit time to start our little but amazing forest. To prevent problems from the illnesses and climate changes, 70% of plants what we plan to plant, can grow on 57 latitude and we also start growing Estonian local plant species. With the help we can create forest with the great immune system and strong health, so we can get food even after major shift of climate.

Our food forest will be well documented for the next generations to learn from our successes and failures (of course, we are positive and we do hope not to have many failures). We are welcoming volunteers from all over the world to grow with us. 

Tsirgumäe food forest will use horses for work, we plan to do every work possible with horses, this is the only sustainable way to use. In the village we live, lots of people are working with horses, Heldor and Alex learned how to work with horse and are now perfectly capable to work with horses. We can also teach the horse work for volunteers; it is not so hard! 

Our food forest is not just food forest. It will have areas for poultry, agroforestry, herbal gardens, shiitake mushrooms and another mushrooms, restaurant, garden for walking, school for everybody and many things more. 

Support us or come and join our food forest team!

Anyone who plants a tree has not lived in vain

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