2018 has been an exciting year so far for the Philadelphia Orchard Project and we thank each and every one of you for supporting us in our mission to create a more beautiful, bountiful Philadelphia.
HIGHLIGHTS FROM OUR 2018 SPRING SEASON
-Assisted with brand new orchard plantings at Cramp Elementary, Union Baptist Church, and Wyck Historic House
-Received new support from musician Paul Simon, Impact100, the Claneil Foundation, and more!
We hope you will take a few minutes to read below about some our POP events, past and future, as well as some of the interesting people and stories we’ve encountered along the way.
Volunteer Work Days
POP is always in need of volunteers to help us with orchard maintenance throughout the season, workdays occur monthly so be sure to check our website for updates on events across the city.
Getting your hands dirty in an orchard is always better with friends, if you or anyone you know is looking for the opportunity to help out as a group, reach out to: firstname.lastname@example.org
POP is Growing!
This year we are thrilled to introduce new staff members Orchard Director Michael Muehlbauer and Orchard Assistant Alkebu-lan Marcus! This year’s POP team also includes Repair the World Fellow Megan Brookens and interns Alex Vogelsong, Cole Jadrosich, Greg Hample, and Abaigh Casey. We’d also like to express our thanks again to departing staff Robyn and Tanya.
We’ve had a busy and bountiful spring season with POP’s School Orchard program and community educational initiatives. Since January, we’ve delivered 17 lessons to 6 school orchard partners and reached 210 students.
Participating school orchard partners included William L. Sayre High School, William T. Tilden Middle School, Henry C. Lea Elementary School, Overbrook School for the Blind, Penn Alexander School, and John F. Hartranft School. Lesson topics included propagation, planting, and pruning; creating value-added products from the orchard; wild edible identification; and food preservation methods and traditions.
To read more about this year’s school orchard program, see our recent blog post update “Teaching Tomorrow’s Tenders”
POP’s core work of planting and supporting community orchards in the city continues to grow, and we are now working with 61 different orchard sites in neighborhoods across the city! 234 volunteers joined with us and our partners at 14 orchard planting events this spring.
Brand new orchards were planted with Cramp Elementary in North Philly, Union Baptist Church in South Philly, and Wyck Historic House in Northwest Philly. In all, 33 new fruit and nut trees, 92 berries and vines, and 526 perennial flowers and herbs were planted this season!
To learn more about all our orchard partners and view a map of POP sites, click here or visit phillyorchards.org/orchards.
June was joyful and filled with Juneberries, one of our favorite native fruits. With volunteers and orchard partners, we picked 120 lbs of juneberries at 10 harvest events across the city.
These incredible, abundantly available fruits were then featured by local businesses with a shared aim to increase awareness and utilize local fruit that would otherwise go to waste. We also harvested 50 lbs of fruit during Mulberry Madness and we are looking forward to Paw Paw Palooza 2018. Stay tuned for other gleaning events and a new workshop series highlighting lesser known fruits & herbs and led by community educators.
Join our POPHarvest listserv to get involved!
POP’s urban orchard blog continues to cover a variety of topics in ecological orchard care as well as highlighting our plants, programs, partners, and volunteers.
Some recent posts include:
Those Nutty Gardeners!: PA & NY Nut Growers Association
The Spotted Lanternfly: New Orchard Superpest?
Amaranth: Super Feed, Super Weed
Shrubs with Shrubs: Incorporating Underutilized Shrubs into Your Garden and Your Cocktails
New POP Pest & Disease Identification Guides!
Need help in identifying what specific pests and diseases are troubling your fruit trees? POP has put together a series of photo guides for apples, cherries, peaches, plums, pears and Asian pears! Download them for free from our website: https://www.phillyorchards.org/resources/pop_handouts/
Weed ID Guides
Our user-friendly guide was designed for orchard partners to identify over 40 of the most common weeds in Philadelphia. The guide also educates partners about positive and negative attributes of each weed, including life cycle, growth habit, edible and medicinal qualities, and ecological value. Based on these characteristics, the guide makes recommendations for which weeds to consider tolerating and which to consider removing.
Although intended for use by our partners, POP’s Weed Identification Guide has value for any home gardener! The price for mail delivery is $18 per guide and you can purchase them here via PayPal.
Please reach out to email@example.com for bulk ordering options. We are happy to provide reduced pricing options for orders of 5 or more copies.
Keep POP Growing Strong
Your Amazon purchases can benefit POP at no cost to you!
You can direct Amazon to give a percentage of all purchases to POP.
POP can now accept workplace donations via United Way (#53494), Earthshare, and Benevity: ask your employer about how to set up tax-exempt contributions and matching donations to support our work. We are also now able to accept stock transfers, so you can divest, and then invest in planting the future with POP!
The Philadelphia Orchard Project is deeply grateful to each and every one of our generous donors and the support of our community. To make a donation simply click below and fill out the online form.