City Orchard: a Bread for the City project!
City Orchard is our brand new 2.75 acre organic fruit orchard in nearby Beltsville, MD. This orchard contains 1,000 trees and bushes, including apple, Asian pear, persimmon, blueberry and blackberry. By the time they mature (in 2014), these plants will yield upwards of 40,000 lbs. of fresh fruit — all of which will be distributed to DC residents in need through Bread for the City’s two food pantry locations.
Beyond merely growing fruit, we will also use City Orchard as an educational resource for our clients — many of whom have never left DC’s city limits before. We look forward to showing them how they too can grow their own produce, even if it’s simply in a pot on a windowsill. We look forward to inviting clients to pick a ripe apple right off the limb and experience firsthand the importance of — and joy of — fresh food in a healthy diet.
We need your help to keep City Orchard going! While a grant from the USDA is covering the start-up costs for the project, it will still cost us $35 per tree/per year to maintain. As such, we’re looking to our community to help share in the cost by sponsoring a tree today!
With our trees now planted, there’s not much we can do other than wait. They need time to grow so that they may get strong enough to bear fruit for years to come. City Orchard should reach full production by the fall of 2014. At that point, we will most definitely need the assistance of volunteer groups to help us harvest its bountiful yield.
In the meantime, we have plenty of other opportunities in the realm of urban agriculture. For our rooftop gardens, we still need volunteers to lead workshops, plan events in the space, and to donate goods like organic potting soil, hanging pots for growing herbs on our walls, large, free-standing pots for berry bushes and tomatoes, vegetable seeds or flowers (for our bees!).
And through our Glean for the City Project, we need self-organized groups of volunteers during the late spring, summer and fall who can sort gleaned produce from West End Market in Alexandria and Eastern Market at Bread for the City’s NW center on Sunday afternoons.
For more information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.