This garden was both an experiment in the light requirements of various garden vegetables and an attempt to grow some food as soon as possible.
Tall jungle trees were being felled on the perimeter of the small clearing as the seedlings were emerging. Some farmers advised not to plant anything or predicted we would have no harvest. The garden area had bananas planted every three strides, pigeon peas between the bananas, and regular rapidly growing annual plants interspersed irregularly through it all. The idea was to cover the ground as soon as possible and make use of all the space while it was available. Ultimately, the bananas will occupy all of the space and totally shade the ground in that area. Some cahune palm trees remained in the clearing waiting for the day when they would be needed for roofing materials. Some trees had been girdled to allow in more light, but the trees did not drop their leaves for many months.
A number of plants did very well under these shadey conditions, some did adequately, but many did miserably. Below are some listings of how various plants faired. In the case where plants did poorly we have included our best guess as to why the plants did poorly.
In the end we felt the shadey vegetable garden was worthwhile. It not only provided us with food, but also cut down on weeding and in some areas, covered the ground so well that no weeding was needed. On this area's perimeter, the felling of trees continues to let in more light and thereby increases the productive potential of the area.
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