Space to put down roots and grow is crucial for plant’s survival and growth. Without it, plants will become stunted, suppressed … and may even die.
Permaculture principles three and four are about catching and storing energy and obtaining a yield.
Giving a plant enough space and nourishment to establish and flourish is key before we can even start thinking about yield.
In part, this comes down to the ecological balance of the garden and the observational skills and interactions of the gardeners.
So observe, start small and prioritise patches that are already catching or storing energy.