As told by Rebecca WIlliams.
Basically, my English major background and love of word origins combined with farming practices is where the name came from.
When I was trying to think of a name, the philosophical concept of polyculture over monoculture was really important to me. At some point the word “manifold” popped into my mind. I took out a dictionary and looked up the definitions and etymology. I found that embedded in the word “manifold” are the words “many” and “fold”. These two words convey the concept of the multitude over the singular, the concept of that diverse multitude working as distinct pieces of a unified whole. The word “fold” was especially interesting: a bit of ground on a farm, especially associated with sheep (see: sheepfold); it can also indicate multiplicity and things increasing in number.
So there it was. What we do and how we try to do it all rolled into this name. It was a purely cerebral exercise.