Grafting, cutting, sowing. How to make your own planting material for your food forest?

Propagating plants for food forests

Almost everyone who is serious about food forests wants to learn one day how to propagate planting material themselves. Not only because it saves costs, or because the supply from growers is scarce, but also to understand how it works, to get a grip on how nature works and how those cultivars so desirable for food forests come about.

Both practically and theoretically strong

This course will teach you how to propagate plants and especially woody species. None other than Food Boss Martijn Aalbrecht will show you, in three days spread over the season, all aspects of the propagation of woody species. He helps more and more food forest owners on their way with their food forest, knows a lot about plants and plant propagation and is -not unimportantly- a gifted teacher. 

You can choose to take the course on three Thursdays or three Fridays. Mixing is unfortunately not possible. The locations are at Martijn Aalbrecht in Hengelo, Food Forest Thuishaven in Zeewolde and Nursery.... in Hazerswoude.

In these three days of lessons, we give a lot of theory every day, but we will also actively practice. We provide all materials (knives, rootstocks, tape etc) and you will be taking cuttings, grafting and oculating, and taking care of the plants yourself. 

At the end you are certainly not an accomplished grower, but you will be able to do the simpler propagation methods just fine by yourself and can continue practicing for the more complex techniques. People who want to continue learning as a professional grower after this course can be helped further on their way.

More about the content

Day 1: Basic explanation of propagation and more in-depth on grafting

Thursday group on 29-2

and ter start wee groups on Fridays
group 1 on 1-3
group 2 on 8-3
Day 1 will take place at Food Forest Thuishaven in Zeewolde 

What techniques are used to propagate plants and why do we apply them? We then go deeper into the theory of grafting. We discuss why many trees and shrubs are grafted and what the advantages and disadvantages of this are. We look at the different types of rootstocks and why there is so much diversity in rootstocks. We also explain what a scion is and how to harvest and store it.

In the afternoon, we will work on the grafting of trees and you will be able to graft two real fruit trees to take home. At the end of the afternoon, we visit the food forest and see specifically if we can recognise the grafted trees and what this says about the tree.


Day 2: Sowing, laying off and summer cuttings

Thursday group on June 20 

The first Friday group on June 21
And the second Friday group on June 28
Day 2 takes place at the Food Boss in Hengelo

What are the different ways of sowing perennial crops? We discuss different techniques like stratification and scarification.
What is scarifying and which species do you use this technique on?
We also look at the technique of summer cutting. What is summer cutting and what makes this way of cutting different from the winter cutting?
In addition, we look at the care of the grafted trees from the first lesson. Have the trees taken root and how do you let them grow out in a good way?

In the afternoon Martijn will show how he propagates all plants. Of course, we will also visit the food forest and specifically see the techniques discussed there in practice.


Day 3: Winter cuttings and oculating

Thursday group on Oct. 10,
First Friday
group on Oct. 11,
And the second Friday
group on Oct. 18
Day 3 takes place at Nursery de Koperwiek in Hazerswoude

This last day is about winter cuttings and the oculating of trees.
In the theory of winter cuttings we look at the technique of collecting the right cutting materials. Which plants are suitable for winter cutting, how to collect cutting wood and how to make the best cut. What are the advantages of a greenhouse and can you also take cuttings outdoors?
In addition, the theory of grafting is discussed. What is grafting and what are the biggest differences with grafting? When to choose for grafting and when to graft?

In the afternoon, you will start oculating a number of trees yourself. You can take two fruit trees home. At the end of the afternoon, there is an excursion to the food forest where we look in practice at the difference between grafted and oculated trees.

young planting material food forest
Just do it! And observe well! Dare to fail and be patient. Enjoy when you do succeed!

Kyara Smit
Föda Silva
Top addition to the annual programme

Mia Carey
Physiotherapy/Fall prevention & coaching
Propagating and sowing yourself gives powerful plants! And it is good for your wallet.
Marian Rupert
I have gained a lot of knowledge that I can immediately apply in my own food forest.

Freek Kusters
Green Heart Nature Farm
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Summary and investment

We record all class days. So, should you unexpectedly have to stay home, we record the whole day, du you can always watch all the theory back and still get a lot in.

With this course, we offer you a digital course environment (the digital classroom) in which not only all course material can be found, but also extra theory and additional information. You can also easily find each other here.  

The cost for the entire course is €575, excluding VAT and including all materials and including a vegetarian/vegan lunch. If you have other dietary requirements, feel free to communicate them to us and we will provide a delicious lunch. 

We deliver this course according to our terms of delivery. They are simple and clear, so please read them.

If you are unable to pay the training fee at once, or if you work for an organisation that uses invoicing, please contact us. 

Course Propagation 2024

575,00 excl. VAT/VAT

In three days, spread out over the season, you will not only learn how to graft, seed, and care for your plants, but also specifically how to apply this knowledge to your food forest. Not only does this save you a lot of money, it also makes you less dependent on the scarce supply and teaches you to understand how nature works.

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