Thanks to a public “food forest” Atlanta residents will have greater access to fresh food including free organic fruits, nuts, mushrooms, veggies, and herbs.
The City of Atlanta recently voted to transform a vacant, old, overgrown farm into a food forest Instead of developing it into townhouses, as many other cities are doing.
This 7-acre public park is transforming to feature fruit-producing trees, vines, and shrubs along walking trails restored native forest and a community vegetable garden by 2020.
Alongside the preexisting walnut and pecan trees has already been planted a vegetable garden, as well as more than 100 fruit trees, including figs, apples, plums, and peaches.
The garden will include a community composting facility, a medicinal mushroom walk, a rainwater collection system, and an apiary to house bees for pollination.
This land was both by the city for around $150,000 the Conservation Fund. The city intends to help keep the land affordable and will be helping maintain the park in the future.
The Atlanta’s authorities are going further and planning to replicate the food forest in several locations throughout Atlanta, where a third of the land is considered a “food desert” by the USDA. It will be a good possibility for the citizens, who live more than a half-mile from fresh fruits and vegetables.
Stacy Funderburke, an acquisition associate the Conservation Fund said: “The opportunity to replicate this is already coming up. The Parks Department is thinking about it.” He added that “It’s great to fast-forward five years from now. What if there were five of these food forests sprinkled around Atlanta? There could be. There’s enough land. It’s more about showing it’s possible.”