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17 Dynamic Accumulators You Need In Your Food Forest

Dynamic accumulators are a popular idea in permaculture. It refers to plants that have deep roots that gather minerals. This is a process called phytoaccumulation, and different plants can accumuluate different metals.

The theory is that you plant these deep rooted plants, they draw up nutrients from deep within the soil. When the plant decomposes it makes those minerals more available for the shallower rooted plants.

There isn’t much scientific data on if the minerals are broken down and available for other plants, but there are many case studies that show a positive effect.

We do know that some plants are used to clean up land that has been contaminated. Phytoaccumulating plants will gather up the toxins such as lead, and can then be buried deep into the ground where they will not injure people.

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We also know that many plants thrive with the addition of mulches and compost. Many of these types of plants work great for creating a lot of bulky plant material that you can “chop and drop” in place as mulch. They’re also great for adding to the compost when it needs bulked up.

Plus, so many plants have multiple uses! They can be medicinal or edible. They can attract beneficial insects such as bees! And sometimes they can just be beautiful to look at.

Adding more variety of plants on your property, and especially near your trees can help create a vibrant mini-ecosystem.

Here are 17 popular dynamic accumulators that you should plant that will benefit your garden and trees:

  • Amaranth
  • Apple Tree
  • Birch Tree
  • Borage
  • Chickweed
  • Chicory
  • Comfrey
  • Daikon Radish
  • Dandelion
  • Horsetail
  • Lamb’s Quarters
  • Maple Tree
  • Moringa
  • Mulberry
  • Nettles
  • Sorrel
  • Yarrow

I look forward to more data being gathered on dynamic accumulators. But I won’t be waiting until then before I start planting these useful species in my food forest.

Want more information on starting a fruit tree guild? Check out these posts:


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