Silver Tree Forest is a permaculture nursery and forest farm located in the hamlet of Owasco, NY.

 

Nestled in the rolling hills of the eastern Finger Lakes, our 6-acre farm is home to a perennial forest garden, useful plant nursery, mushroom yard, chicken and duck pastures, and multiple ponds surrounded by silver maple wetlands. Using permaculture design, organic practices, biological processes and hand cultivation, we grow perennial flowers, mushrooms, herbs, fruit trees, berry bushes, edible vines and vegetables for sale on farm or through our CSA program.

We observe and encourage beneficial relationships between plants, animals, humans and the soil, designing polycultures of resilient species that maximize function, beauty, and abundance. Serving our community as a demonstration of a human-scale, highly diversified microfarm, we increase soil fertility, store carbon and support biodiversity, all while providing food, fuel, fiber, fodder, fertilizers, “farmaceuticals” and fun.* Basically, we strive to cultivate conditions conducive to life and let nature thrive!

* Thanks to Dave Jacke for this description of the products of a forest garden.

 
 

We envision the broad-acre restoration of monoculture farmlands into biodiverse, abundant and highly useful perennial ecosystems.  Mimicking the oak savannahs and old-growth forests stewarded by indigenous people before European colonization, we see a path towards the dynamic regeneration of our lands.  We believe that humans are just one participant in the cooperative, interdependent network of plants, animals, fungi and microorganisms that make up our living world.

As stewards of this land, we feel we have not only a right, but a responsibility to actively participate in the creative design, implementation and management of productive biological systems that meet our needs and produce a surplus of useful, edible crops and ecosystems services that benefit all. We practice and share our experiences with our community, inspiring others to co-create a human culture deeply rooted in our relationship with (as part of) nature.

 

Our Cut Flowers

Silver Tree Flowers offers a diverse-array of annual and perennial cut flowers for wholesale markets or for purchase through our CSA (Community-Supported Agriculture) program.  We value high quality, locally and organically-grown crops that reflect our connection to and relationship as part of the natural world. Our flowers are grown in our ½ acre field in no-till, permanent, perennial beds managed by hand using organic practices and biological processes to fertilize, mulch, water, weed and harvest with the greatest care.


Our fresh flowers are sold in-season directly to customers and florists within a 50-mile radius of our farm, assuring healthy bouquets, positive impacts on our local environment (through ecological farming and delivery by electric car) and a real relationship between grower and purchaser. We do not use synthetic or chemical fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides or fossil fuel-based mechanization at any stage of cultivation. We buy organic seed whenever possible and use a locally-produced, coconut coir-based seed starter mix for our greenhouse-grown seedlings. We recognize the high toxicity (both for the growers and buyers) and high carbon footprint (most flowers sold at U.S. florists are flown in thousands of miles from S. America or Europe) of conventionally- and commercially-grown flowers. We value ecology, quality, creativity and community in producing our hand-grown, hand-harvested, hand-delivered flowers for your table.

Click Here to Join Our Flower Bouquet CSA Today!

Flower Bouquet CSA

CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture, a model of agricultural production in which a network of members pledge to support a farm, with growers and consumers sharing the risks and benefits of production. When you sign up as a Silver Tree Flower CSA member, you help us meet the upfront costs of seeds and equipment in the Spring, then we provide you with a gorgeous bouquet of flowers for 12 weeks throughout the summer (mid-July thru end of September). Each week you’ll receive a unique bouquet of over 30 stems of the freshest blooms available in our field that week, beautifully arranged in a glass mason jar (returnable each week for reuse).

Click Here to Join our Flower Bouquet CSA Today!

Variety

We have carefully curated our list of flower varieties to bring you a wide range of beautiful blooms, naturally grown in healthy soils and supported by the biodiversity of our forest gardens. Availability of our cut flowers varies week by week, depending on what is at peak harvest at that time.  Our fields are in production from May-October each summer with blooms for sale from mid-July until frost.  Please feel free to contact us anytime with questions or to suggest your favorite flower for us to grow!

Wholesale

We are dedicated to providing excellent quality, fresh-from-the-field blooms for your floral shop or floral design business at competitive wholesale prices.  Our fields are in production from May-October each summer with blooms for sale from mid-July until frost.  We deliver twice a week to local florists within a 30-mile radius of Auburn, NY.  Please feel free to contact us using this form to sign up to receive our weekly wholesale price list, request delivery, or suggest varieties you’d like us to grow.

Marvelous Mushrooms

We grow shiitake, oyster, and wine cap mushrooms for fresh eating and home cultivation.  A delicious source of protein for you and your family, homegrown mushrooms can provide many years of abundant harvests.  Our shiitake and oyster mushrooms are grown on sustainably harvested local hardwood or red maple logs from our own forest. Given proper growing conditions, these logs are ready to produce multiple flushes of fresh, delicious mushrooms each year. All three of these mushrooms below are easy to grow.

Click here to purchase our mushroom products.

Shiitake

Lentinula edodes, shiitake mushrooms are delicious as well as a potent medicinal. Feeding on dead wood, it's easy to grow these nutritionally dense, gourmet mushrooms at home.

Wine Cap

The easiest to propagate, wine cap mushroom can grow directly in mulched areas or garden beds. Actively building healthy soil for your plants, wine cap are an exceptional fungi partner.

Oyster

Happy to grow on many types of wood, oyster mushrooms are easy to cultivate and a great way to produce food on fallen, normally discarded logs. Try growing them on "totems" for a fun home project.

TURKEY TAIL

Turkey Tail is a woody medicinal.  You don't eat it, but instead steep it or make a tincture to ingest.  It grows on many kinds of dead wood, is native the world over, and has loads of studies to support the medicinal claims.

 

Nursery

At Silver Tree Nursery, we cultivate productive, edible, perennial plants for home-, farm- or community-scale forest gardening. We focus on species and cultivars that thrive in our bioregion and provide multiple functions in the landscape, such as habitat, pollinator support, nitrogen-fixation, mineral accumulation, weed-suppression, erosion control and, of course, food! Imagine a yard filled with beautiful, edible and medicinal flowers, shrubs, trees and vines, all working together to support your health, while increasing the ecological health of your environment.

 
 

Trees

From canopy nut trees towering above to semi-dwarf fruit trees providing delicious treats just within reach, trees are the backbone of our forest gardens, providing structure, shade, nutrients, fodder, coppice, mulch, food, medicine and shelter.  Many acres of red maple trees inhabit our farm, giving us sweet maple syrup each winter, logs for shiitake and oyster mushroom production each spring and shade, erosion control, water filtration and habitat year-round. Every day we stand in wonder at the inherent beauty and diversity of services these trees provide. It is with this inspiration in mind that we cultivate and propagate an abundance of highly productive and useful tree species particularly suited to our bioregion. Enjoy perusing the trees we offer and don’t hesitate to contact us with any questions you may have about these trees and their uses.

Shrubs

The shrub layer of the forest garden occupies an important place in assuring high productivity and fertility, maximum space efficiency, and essential habitat for birds, mammals and beneficial insects. Nestled under and around canopy and fruit and nut trees, shrubs can provide an abundance of berries, nuts and coppice materials highly useful to gardeners, farmers and our animal partners. In addition to more familiar shrubs such as blueberry, elderberry and hazelnut, explore the lesser-known but very nutritious haskap, quince, or even seaberry, which not only provides a Vitamin-C rich juice, but also fixes nitrogen in the soil, creating fertility for surrounding plants!

Herbaceous

A botanical term for any plant that dies back to the ground at the end of the growing season (or has no woody stems above ground from year to year), herbaceous plants include flowers, herbs, perennial vegetables, vines and bulbs. Here at Silver Tree Nursery, we cultivate perennial, herbaceous plants that will provide beauty, food, medicine, and enjoyment for many years to come.  We like to combine trees, shrubs, herbs, flowers, vines, and root crops into polycultures of plants that support each other in function and beneficial relationship. Each plant is chosen and nurtured to maximize its useful properties and placed in the larger network of interconnected partners within the forest garden. Have fun getting to know these lovely beings and don't hesitate to call or contact us with questions, ideas and inspirations you may have.

We're still getting started. Please check back soon.