The Farm

Welcome to Black Creek Permaculture. We offer on-site consultation, planning, and design services for landscapes of all shapes and sizes. The organic and local food movements have begun to change how food is grown, but in many suburban and rural areas landscape management has continued on in the conventional way. There is a great need to connect the dots and treat the space around our homes as what it truly is – our habitat.  We should be able to harvest fruits and other foods, wood for the fire, eggs for the frying pan, medicines for home remedies, and much more. With the appropriate design, every home can be surrounded by abundance.

Black Creek Permaculture is owned and operated by Erik Schellenberg. The site houses a commercial nursery, organic vegetable farm, and a rich and diverse ecological community. Located in Highland, NY, two miles west of the Hudson River, the site is the only black dirt farm left in production in the county. Black dirt, or muck soil, forms when an impermeable bedrock called marl is covered with anaerobic eutrophic wetland plants living and dying for thousands of years. The result is depositions of nearly pure organic matter.  The site also contains upland soil where the orchards, house, and buildings are located.

Young persimmon orchard planting on the upland soils

Black Creek Permaculture donated 6,000lb of vegetables this season!

The nursery offers heirloom, rare, and highly adapted specimens – mostly fruit trees and bushes, with a selection of other perennials – which are for sale directly from the farm and at farmers’ markets. In addition to vegetable and plant sales, Black Creek Permaculture is also committed to education via a variety of workshops, talks, and courses.

A variety of heirloom apples and fruit bushes in the nursery