Imagine yourself strolling through aisle after aisle of fragrant fruit trees and delicious-looking veggie bushes. The fruit is perfectly ripe, just begging to be picked. You reach out to grab one, but then think better of it...this is surely someone's personal garden. Then, you notice a sign that reads,"Help yourself--everything is free."
Locavore's fantasy? It might sound like one, but determined community organizers in Seattle have succeeded in making it a reality.
A seven-acre plot of land in the city’s Beacon Hill neighborhood will soon be planted with hundreds of different kinds of edibles: walnut and chestnut trees; blueberry and raspberry bushes; fruit trees, including apples and pears; exotics like yuzu citrus, guava, persimmons, honeyberries, and lingonberries; herbs; and more.
Guided by the principles of permaculture, the "food forest" as it's been called, will be perennial and self-sustaining, just like a forest is in the wild.
A true foray into urban agriculture, there will be no fence around the forest, or head gardener making sure no one spends a few hours weeding before they enjoy the harvest. The project will be executed in a public park, and it will remain public when it's planted. All will be available for public plucking to anyone who wanders into the food forest.
We think this sounds delicious and is a great example of what communities can accomplish when they band together for a cause. Do you have a large-scale gardening or food-sharing project in your community? Tell us about it!
Image Credit: Flickr/Ctd 2005