Author: Laura Northrup Poland

Hi! I'm Laura. I'm the farmer, writer, and artist behind Strawberry Moon Farm. I'm currently in year seven of a forty year farm project, and I've planted over 3,000 native fruit and nut trees on the ten acres of Indiana wetland that I call home. I'm working to help this land bring its most special gifts into being, but it's not a completely selfless act. When the trees mature, they could produce even more food than the corn fields that came before them. Thank you for your presence here as I share what I learn on this fascinating journey that's changing what I eat, how I live, and how I view this amazing planet we call Earth.

The Brushwood Fence

A brush fence serves multiple useful functions, it looks nice and tidy, and it requires only a few inexpensive materials. If you find yourself with an overabundance of cut limbs and brush, consider this interesting and easy to DIY solution that yields privacy, wildlife habitat, compost, and more. Read the article for complete instructions on how to build your own brush fence for under $100.

Thriving with Marginal Land

Marginal land is a term used to describe land that isn’t well suited to industrial scale farming. But for a small farmer with a little creativity, these spaces can offer unique potential for inspiring harvests and new forms of abundance. Read the full article to learn how I’m thriving with several types of marginal land here on the farm.

Why I Farm Native Plant Foods

I wasn’t much interested in native plants until I came to live on this land. I knew that native plants were good for the wildlife, and that they could be pretty, but I was only interested in edible plants. I could imagine native plants in the landscaping, because I had seen them there, but I never imagined them in food production. I had never seen them in orchards, I had never seen them in vegetable gardens, and I rarely saw them in garden catalogues. Little by little, the native plants won me over. Did you know many of them are edible? Read the full article to learn more!

The Year of Stability : Growing Strong Roots in 2024

Congratulations, dear ones. We made it through 2023! All of the challenges we faced over the past year have grown us into the people we are right now. I hope we have chosen to become wiser, stronger, and kinder as a result. We are crossing into a bright new year full of new opportunities, new experiences, new possibilities. All the cards are on the table. Which one will you choose? This year, my resolution is stability.

A Good Year: 2023 Recap

My new year’s resolution last January was to find my way out of burnout and reclaim my joy. I consciously crafted a gentle year for myself, with small goals and a stripped-down schedule. Thank the stars. This year came pre-loaded with significant obstacles of its own, and I don’t think I would have made it through a more ambitious year. As things were, I had the space and the presence of mind to navigate each challenge as it came. I processed the lessons from each setback, as they called into question my old assumptions, challenged my default patterns, and shook me out of a predefined path paved with limiting beliefs. Through it all, I healed from my burnout, regained my energy, my zest for my life and my work, and even my joy. Read the rest of the article to relive the brightest moments and most significant accomplishments from 2023!

Practicing Permaculture

Permaculture was one of the first sustainability models that I encountered in my early days of adulthood, when I was learning to tend my very first garden. I fell in love with the abundance, the layers of fruits and vegetables and vines and herbs, the home scale, and the can-do attitude of it. My permaculture has been expressed in different ways throughout the decades that followed, but it has been part of my life ever since. I’ve practiced permaculture on apartment balconies, in office towers, in community gardens, front yards, and now on a farm scale. The teachings of permaculture are a valuable tool in any Earth-lover’s kit. Whether you are managing big land, a small garden, or an apartment, permaculture can bring more abundance to your life through creativity and a well-engineered design. Click the title to read the full article.

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