What’s above me is a couple of pear trees. What’s surrounding me is hundreds of pears going to waste on the sidewalk. So today, I’m going to show you how to clean up your community, feed some people in need, and have yourself a tasty treat all at the same time.
As I write this, it’s is September 2018. This blog is over a year late, but better late than never in this scenario I think. I had said I was going to do a monthly blog about my year of nothing new and I utterly failed at that. I acknowledge that and apologize on not following through on sharing this endeavor. I was just far too busy and overwhelmed in 2017, all by my own choices. I’m just finally catching up now!
To recap, 2017 was my year of buying nothing new (see the original blog for details). Basically, it meant attempting to go the entire year without buying or receiving anything brand new. Anything already used was fine, just no new items.
In my last blog, Nothing New for a Year- Spring Update, I had just finished a speaking tour in Europe. This blog is about my bike tour across the USA.
After returning to the United States from Europe I had just eight days to prepare to bike from New York City to Seattle, Washington, a 3,700-mile trip. I had been so busy for the last seven weeks in Europe that I had done very little preparation for the bike ride as far as my gear goes. The real challenging part about this trip for me, is that it wasn’t just me, it was about 30 of us cycling across the country, and I was the main organizer. I had way more on my hands than just preparing for myself. I was finding lodging and volunteer activities for about 60 stops across the country and planning out our route, among other things! The trip was called Green Riders- Good Deeds on Bikes.
After nearly a year in the making, I am so excited to finally release the story of how my bamboo bike got stolen and the roller coaster ride I went on to try to get it back. Many of you saw the adventure as it unfolded, but you only saw a fraction of the whole story. When I decided to search for the bike I had a feeling it was going to be quite the adventure, so I decided to film it, but I never, ever expected it to turn out like this. I truly hope that you’ll take the time to watch this short film. I believe you’ll be very glad you did.
This was my favorite moment of my foraging trip in South Florida.
We spotted a house with two coconut trees absolutely loaded with coconuts. I took an educated guess that they were not harvesting the trees, as a vast majority of trees are never harvested.
So we stopped the car and knocked on the front door. Sure enough I was right.
The trees had hundreds of fallen coconuts around them, likely a few year’s worth. They were very happy for us to harvest the trees, so we got right to it.
What you see here is the result of two afternoons of urban foraging. Less than eight hours yielded what would have cost over $700 to purchase organic at the grocery store.
And I did it all on bicycle with a trailer!
Over the last month, I have helped to plant 100 Community Fruit Trees in Orlando. Much of the food that I personally plant I can expect to share in the bounty in just a few months or less. Fruit trees on the other hand are a long-term investment. Most of them won’t produce fruit this year or next, and some won’t produce fruit for as much as five years.
Congratulations! You are the host of a Community Fruit Tree! Through love and care, you will be able to provide a priceless amount of fruit for the people of your community including you and your family. We are so excited to be on this journey towards a happier, healthier, and more sustainable community with you.
Hosting a Community Fruit Tree is pretty easy and requires minimal work, but it does come with some responsibilities. We have written this guide for you including planting, watering, mulching, pruning, when to harvest fruit, and more resources to help ensure that the trees grow healthy and produce a bounty of fruit. This guide is written specifically for Central Florida and following it will greatly increase the chances of these fruit trees surviving and thriving.
Welcome to the Free Seed Project!
Now that you have received your seeds, or will be receiving them soon, it’s time to figure out how to turn these seeds into vegetables, herbs and flowers!
(NOTE: For beginner gardeners that are not a part of the Free Seed Project, you are still in a good place. This guide is designed to help you start growing food and be successful at it).
Here at the Free Seed Project, we don’t want to just give out free seeds. We want to support you in becoming a successful gardener for yourself and your community.
In this article we have created a resource guide and FAQs to help you. This guide is geared largely toward beginner and first-time gardeners because well, experienced gardeners don’t need our help as much! Our goal with this guide is to get you started successfully and get you past the parts you may be nervous about. We want to empower you and activate you into growing your own food and sharing it with your community. And once your confidence level has risen and you feel like you’ve got the hang of it, we’re confident that you can figure out the rest!
So again, this guide focuses on the basics of growing food and provides a general rule of thumb with ideas. We believe we’ve covered mostly everything here to get you past the hard parts.
Your Free Seed Project Pack Guide
Congratulations on receiving your garden starter kit from the Free Seed Project! You are on your way to a beautiful, organic garden that will provide food for you and your community, while providing benefit to pollinators and beneficial critters and insects in your neighborhood.
Seeking better health? It’s growing in your own backyard! Nature provides us with medicine through thousands of plants, but many of us just don’t know how to see it. That’s what the Florida Herbal Conference is for! It’s a weekend surrounded by nature to empower the herbalist community.