South Pittsburgh Reporter - Serving South Pittsburgh Since 1939

Johnny Appleseeds wanted to help plant Urban Farm orchard

 

April 30, 2019

Volunteers at last year's Youth Farm Orchard planting day planted fruit trees at the Hilltop Urban Farm. This year, more than 100 volunteers will help plant more than 250 additional fruit trees, making it the largest urban orchard in the country.

Volunteers at the Hilltop Urban Farm will help plant the largest orchard in the City of Pittsburgh on May 4 from 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at 700 Cresswell Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15210.

The one-acre orchard will feature 200 fruit and nut trees, including apricot, elderberry, apple, hazelnut, cherry, peach, pear, Asian pear, nectarine, and fig. The planting is a partnership with The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation and Plant Five for Life. Within the orchard, Hilltop Urban Farm is planting 52 cider trees in partnership with Threadbare Cider & Mead, a local cider house and meadery in Pittsburgh's Spring Garden neighborhood.

The tree planting event will feature four volunteer plantings shifts: 9:30-11:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m., 12:30 p.m.-2 p.m., and 2-3:30 p.m. Volunteers are encouraged to register for a tree planting shift at https://bit.ly/2U5wMod. This event is supported by the Grounded PGH Mobile Tool Trailer and a workforce training partnership with Landforce. Plant Five for Life will be providing lunch for all volunteers and participants.

At 1 p.m., Plant Five for Life will host a parent-child tree dedication ceremony in the Youth Farm orchard. Families in Allegheny County will be matched to trees at Hilltop Urban Farm to honor the birth of their child and to inspire ongoing literacy, engagement, and care relative to the site, trees, and larger community. If you are a new parent with a child born before May 4 and would like your child to be matched, register at http://www.plantfiveforlife.org/rsvp or contact Plant Five for Life. Preference is given to families located in the southern portion of the City of Pittsburgh.

In May 2018, Hilltop Urban Farm planted 47 fruit trees to establish the Youth Farm orchard with the support of The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation and Plant Five for Life. In September 2018, Hilltop Urban Farm planted 20 restoration chestnut trees with the support of the American Chestnut Planting Foundation and Penn State University College of Agricultural Sciences.

The development of Hilltop Urban Farm has been supported by the Henry L. Hillman Foundation since 2015. The orchard installation is supported by the Colcom Foundation.

The Hilltop Urban Farm is a nonprofit, community-centered farm in the Hilltop community. With 23 acres dedicated to farming, it is a multi-pronged initiative that produces locally-grown crops, provides agriculture-based education, generates entrepreneurial opportunities, and strengthens communities through a Youth Farm, Farmer Incubation Program and Farmers Market. With the development and core programming underway throughout 2019, Hilltop Urban Farm is set to transform the land it currently occupies. Given its size, scope and reach, it will ultimately become the largest urban farm in the United States and serve as a resource for urban farming initiatives. http://www.HilltopUrbanFarm.org

 

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