GreenFriends Farm

Fruit swells into ripeness on a mature tree in the orchard

Growing with Nature

In 2007, Amma asked that a 1000 fruit trees be planted at M.A.Center, San Ramon and thus, GreenFriends Farm was born! Today, with rolling hills of fruit trees, GreenFriends Farm has blossomed into an educational center for ecologically conscious agriculture. It is a destination for enjoying nature, and a vibrant spot for volunteers of all ages.

The farm is a place to grow with Nature.  Using the guiding principles of permaculture, and utilizing Soil Food Web technology, our goal is to shift the way we work with the earth. GreenFriends Farm works in collaboration with Common Vision to offer hands-on courses and intensives on ecologically conscious farming and land management practices.

On volunteer days we host groups and permaculture enthusiasts who come to help prepare the soil and plant trees on the farm. Our outreach to local schools provides an experience of nature and farming systems to urban youth and their families.  

 

Working with Sustainable Practices

Permaculture

Permaculture is a design science that creates living environments that are sustainable and have the diversity and resilience of nature. GreenFriends Farm hosts a Permaculture Design Certification Course in cooperation with Living Mandala. The farm is also a hands-on classroom for the San Francisco Permaculture Design Course.

We use the following permaculture practices:

  • keyline plowing
  • swales and other soil erosion prevention techniques
  • net and pan
  • use of companion planting
  • beekeeping

Soil Food Web: Science of Soil Microorganisms

Soil Food Web is a science of soil microorganisms and their interaction with plants and the earth. We are using Soil Food Web techniques to transform our hard clay soil that is bacterial dominant into a fungal dominant soil that is suitable for fruit trees. GreenFriends Farm is honored to host Dr. Elaine Ingam’s Soil Food Web course every year. Dr. Ingam is the chief scientist at The Rodale Institute, a premier research institute for organic farming since 1947. 

We implement the following Soil Food Web practices:

  • regular applications of compost tea and compost extract
  • heavy mulching with wood chips rich in fungal food
  • making of thermal compost
  • regular analysis of soil
  • compost and compost tea under microscope
  • planting cover crops and companion plants to encourage beneficial microorganisms

Grow with us!

  • Join our mailing list to keep posted on latest courses and volunteer dates.
  • If you are interested in sponsoring courses, events or farm activities, please contact us to learn more about partnership opportunities.