Definition: The process of routinely observing and inspecting a Forest Garden for pests and other issues that need to be addressed.
Scouting in the Forest Garden:
Forest Gardeners should diligently scout for pests in their Forest Gardens routinely. While prevention and proper sanitation are critical to an effective IPM approach, early pest detection can be the difference between losing a plant or two and losing an entire harvest. To avoid major infestations, farmers should walk around their sites at least weekly, carefully observing all aspects of their Forest Gardens. Inspection should start from the soil up, including stems and trunks of the various plants and crops, on the tops and undersides of leaves, and the flowers, pods, and fruits. Any pests or other issues should be noted, with appropriate actions determined and taken as soon as possible.
When scouting, it is critical for farmers to remember proper sanitation procedures and make sure their shoes and hands have been cleaned to avoid spreading any potential pathogens as they navigate through their garden.