POP and UPenn Team Up Again To Make Use of Unharvested Campus Fruits

Did you know that there are dozens of edible fruit trees planted throughout the University of Pennsylvania campus? POP and UPenn’s Facilities and Real Estate Services (FRES) collaborated for a second season to harvest from some of these underutilized trees, educating many passersby in the process. POP has been partnering with various grassroots groups, organizations, and … Continue reading POP and UPenn Team Up Again To Make Use of Unharvested Campus Fruits

Late-Season Ripeners: A How-to on harvesting and preserving Jujubes, Persimmons, Medlars, Hardy Kiwis, & Gojis

POP plants orchards with an intention of having as long a season of harvestable crops as possible in our urban Northeast temperate climate. We’ve now experienced our first frosts of the season–bad for many annual plants and crops still hanging on trees, but a very necessary part of the ripening process for some of the … Continue reading Late-Season Ripeners: A How-to on harvesting and preserving Jujubes, Persimmons, Medlars, Hardy Kiwis, & Gojis

Soil-Building and Nutrient-Accumulating Plants

Red Clover (L) and Comfrey (R) Healthy soil is the foundation of a productive and fruitful orchard. When designing an orchard forest garden like many of those POP plants throughout the city, a key consideration in design is choosing plants that will function as soil builders and nutrient accumulators to support the diverse and multi-layered … Continue reading Soil-Building and Nutrient-Accumulating Plants

Fall Harvest Timing and Equipment

After years of cultivation and year-round attention to orchard maintenance, it may finally be time to harvest from your fruit trees! It is often quite simple to tell when fruits are ready, as ripe fruits are well-colored and are easily plucked off the spur, with little resistance.     The ground color, or the color of the fruit’s skin disregarding any red … Continue reading Fall Harvest Timing and Equipment

Summer Harvest Timing and Equipment

After years of cultivation and year-round attention to orchard maintenance, it may finally be time to harvest from your fruit trees! It is often quite simple to tell when fruits are ready, as ripe fruits are well-colored and are easily plucked off the spur, with little resistance. The ground color, or the color of the … Continue reading Summer Harvest Timing and Equipment

Growing Peaches from Seed

Ever eat a delicious fruit and wonder about planting the seed to grow a new tree? Although all of the common fruits are usually propagated through grafting, peach and apricot trees can be grown from seed. Read below to find out how! Although planting the seeds of apples, pears, plums, and cherries can also result … Continue reading Growing Peaches from Seed

Intro to Wild Edibles

Dandelions, lambs-quarters, mustard greens, oh my!  WILD EDIBLES Widely abundant and highly nutritious, wild edible plants thrive with little human effort and are useful as rich sources of food, medicine, and craft. Sometimes considered weeds, wild edibles emerge everywhere – in untouched city spaces, woodland borderlands, even from the cracks in the sidewalk. Learning how … Continue reading Intro to Wild Edibles

Spring Forward with Wild Edibles – Spotlight on Chickweed and Nettles

Some of nature’s most nutritious foods and powerful medicines come to us from the untended wild – from the cracks in the sidewalk, to the vacant lots left to their own devices. The world of “weeds,” or plants not cultivated intentionally by humans, are those representing the tenacious spirit of the earth itself – to … Continue reading Spring Forward with Wild Edibles – Spotlight on Chickweed and Nettles

Look To The Weeds For What You Need

As the earth & its creatures wake up around us this month, you will probably feel a corresponding surge of energy that’s inexplicable for any other reason than the coming of spring. To encourage that energy & assist in the transformation from spongy winter self to honed & toned summer self, many cultures traditionally detox … Continue reading Look To The Weeds For What You Need

Fresh Figs for Cold Climates

One of the wonder’s of Philadelphia’s fine fruit-growing climate is that we can grow certain warmer climate crops like the fig. South Philly is full of decades old fig trees brought over by immigrants from Italy and other Mediterranean countries. These trees were probably coddled in their youth, wrapped every winter as fig-growers still do in Brooklyn … Continue reading Fresh Figs for Cold Climates