Our permaculture garden has already provided a great harvest in the first year. Wonderful, fresh food, which was lovingly prepared for our guests in the hotel kitchen, could be harvested. Various herbs, some of which are used in our SPA treatments, have visibly felt good and have grown great. Our guests also enjoyed the walks through Austria’s largest hotel-owned permaculture garden of our Falkensteiner Balance Resort Stegersbach. The smells. The colors. A garden dream. Pleasure for all senses.
Paul’s green thumb and kale chips
The fact that our garden had so much to offer is also due to the commitment of our hotel gardener Paul. Quasi untiring in his efforts, he takes care that all plants, bushes, hedges, trees, etc. are well looked after and maintained.
Even though the actual harvesting season is almost over, there are still some fine delicacies that can be harvested at the beginning of winter: various leafy vegetables, cabbage, beets, pumpkins, celery, and sugarloaf. Paul especially likes the Superfood kale, because you can easily make delicious and healthy kale chips from it:
- 150 g kale
- 2 tablespoons olive oil (or other oil according to taste)
- Salt and spices to taste
Separate the kale leaves from the stalk, wash the leaves, and let them dry well.
Then mix in a bowl with oil and spices. Put leaves on a baking tray and bake in the oven at 130 degrees. The cooking time varies depending on the consistency of the potato chips. In any case, they are ready after 30 minutes in the oven at the latest.
Preparation for hibernation
The fact that a longer harvest is possible in our permaculture garden is of course also due to the fact that the climate in southern Burgenland is milder due to the many hours of sunshine and the really frosty time starts very late, Paul explains. There is a lot to do to protect the garden and the plants on the one hand and to prepare them ideally for the next garden season on the other hand. From the park next to the garden, the leaves are collected to cover the beds. This natural layer of gauze supplies the soil with nutrients, and that completely naturally. And the colorful foliage looks very pretty by the way.
Paul also relies on so-called green fertilization with soil-improving plants. Soil organisms such as earthworms, microorganisms, and various fungi, which are irreplaceable for soil fertility, gain their important nutritional basis from dead plant remains and excretions of the plants, so that soil activity is promoted. The soil is protected from sun, wind, rain, and frost, and the build-up of humus is also promoted, as the plants bring a large amount of biomass into the soil. Sustainability is written in capital letters in our garden.
Looking forward to
It will be quieter in the garden, but not for Paul. There are many ideas for the next gardening season and his mission is clear: quality instead of quantity is the top priority. In the garden, fruit, vegetables, berries, and herbs of the best quality should grow, covering a part of the daily hotel menu and providing a real feast for the eyes during a walk or a guided tour with Paul through the garden. True to the Falkensteiner motto: Pleasure for all senses. We are already looking forward to welcoming the next garden season with a warm welcome home and to a successful 2021 harvest!