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Plant the future with the Philadelphia Orchard Project!

Support our POPharvest campaign today!

POP works with community-based groups and volunteers to plan and plant orchards filled with useful and edible plants. POP provides orchard design assistance, plant materials, and training in orchard care. Community organizations own, maintain, and harvest the orchards, expanding community-based food production, environmental benefits, and opportunities for nature education. Orchards are planted in formerly vacant lots, community gardens, schoolyards, and other spaces, almost exclusively in low-wealth neighborhoods where people lack access to fresh fruit.

Please join POP in building a more beautiful and bountiful city for all!

Bartram's planting 2

Learn more about POP’s work via our recent feature video on WHYY TV!

Juneberry 1 Plant Spotlight: The Joyful Juneberry (Amelanchier alnifolia)

By 2016 POP Intern, Lucia Kearney. It’s June, and that means a piece of good news for us all: the juneberries are ripening! While this is making some of us leap up and down doing happy dances, I’m sure it’s also making some ask, “What the heck’s a juneberry?!” Great question. Read all about them … Continue reading Plant Spotlight: The Joyful Juneberry (Amelanchier alnifolia)

Pawpaw fruit Plant Spotlight: Meet the Pawpaw! (Asimina triloba)

By 2016 POP Intern, Lucia Kearney. I first encountered the pawpaw one late-September day when my former elementary school art teacher came to my parents’ house for dinner. She and her husband had gone foraging for them on Swarthmore College’s campus before heading our way. I was perplexed; these fruits were native to the area, … Continue reading Plant Spotlight: Meet the Pawpaw! (Asimina triloba)

Volunteers preparing the soil for orchard planting at Penn Alexander School in West Philly. Volunteer Spotlight: Chris

POP could not continue to plant and maintain orchards throughout the city without the help of our dedicated volunteers. We asked Chris Poehlmann, who recently participated in our new orchard planting day at Penn Alexander School, to share his volunteer experience with us. Read on to learn about how his unique skillset came in handy … Continue reading Volunteer Spotlight: Chris

Air Layering Pictogram Edible Perennial Propagation: Cuttings and Layering

By 2015-2016 POP Education and Outreach Intern, Alyssa Schimmel. In this edition of our Edible Plant Propagation series, we’ll cover cuttings and layering as easy and inexpensive methods for generating new fruiting vines and berry bushes for your garden or orchard. Cuttings and layering are two forms of asexual or vegetative propagation in which we … Continue reading Edible Perennial Propagation: Cuttings and Layering

grafting cut Fruit Tree Propagation: Grafting

By Lucia Kearney, 2016 POP Orchard Intern It might surprise you to learn that almost no fruit trees are grown from seed. There are several reasons for this, one of the primary being that most fruit tree seeds are unlikely to produce the same variety of fruit as the parent tree. This is especially true … Continue reading Fruit Tree Propagation: Grafting

Cornelian Cherry Tree Cornelian Cherry (Cornus Mas), An Early Bloomer

By 2016 POP Intern, Lucia Kearney Cornelian Cherries are some of the first trees to bloom, their bright yellow flowers bursting forth at the end of winter right when everyone could use some color in their lives. A member of the dogwood family, Cornelian Cherries are small trees, usually growing to around 16 feet in … Continue reading Cornelian Cherry (Cornus Mas), An Early Bloomer

A beautiful depiction of early season apple development. Read more at http://elizapples.com/category/orchard-managment/ Organic Sulfur Spray and Early Spring Management

By 2015 POP Intern, Steve Palder, and Program Director, Robyn Mello Spring seems to have arrived a couple of weeks early this year, and the first scab spores have been detected in Pennsylvania! If buds on your fruit trees have begun to break (green tips or flowers emerging), this morning’s good spring rains provide a great … Continue reading Organic Sulfur Spray and Early Spring Management

Pruning the prolific black raspberry canes at The Village of Arts and Humanities and PhillyEarth permaculture site Pruning: Bushes, Brambles, and Vines

Adapted from POP’s Pruning Guide, amended by POP Program Director, Robyn Mello and Executive Director, Phil Forsyth These categories of woody perennial edibles are are often considered much lower maintenance than fruit trees. As a result, it’s come to POP’s attention that they may not be receiving the attention they deserve when interplanted in our community … Continue reading Pruning: Bushes, Brambles, and Vines

Burdock flowers provide essential nectar to pollinators from late summer to early fall. If you're a diligent gardener, let the plants flower for the good bugs and then behead them before they dry and set seed. Burdock: Blessing or Burr-den?

By 2016 POP Intern, Bridget Downey, and POP Program Director, Robyn Mello   Burdock is one of the first plants to be aware of at the start of spring when plants begin to emerge. Though it’s mostly loathed by gardeners, landscapers, and pet-owners due to its opportunistic nature and tenacious seedheads, it’s also a weed that is … Continue reading Burdock: Blessing or Burr-den?

Apple Seeds Edible Perennial Plant Propagation I: Stratification and Starting From Seed

By Bridget Downey, 2016 POP Intern, Rachel Baltuch, 2015 POP Intern, and Robyn Mello, POP Program Director Each plant species has different conditions in which they sprout and thrive. POP focuses on perennial edibles and herbs–those which survive winters and continue producing for several years or decades. The most common perennial propagation methods are through … Continue reading Edible Perennial Plant Propagation I: Stratification and Starting From Seed

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