To those of you who are local residents of Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood–or if you are an advocate of converting underutilized urban lots to fruitful green spaces and promoting urban agriculture–here is a great idea that we fully support and are promoting to our membership.

The Chicago Rarities Orchard Project (C.R.O.P.) is gathering support and institutional partners to bring a fruit orchard to Logan Square on the site of what is now an underutilized space currently being used as a haphazard mud & gravel parking lot.

Immediately across from the site of the Logan Square Farmers Market, and adjacent to both Milwaukee Avenue and facing onto the Logan Square frontage, this proposed site conversion will have high visibility and public access opportunities.

Community Support and Connection for the C.R.O.P.
C.R.O.P. has received glowing support from a host of individuals and organizations. Currently they are collaborating with NeighborSpace to find a suitable location for the orchard and benefiting from the invaluable expertise of MidFex, RAFT, Earth First Farms, and Ginkgo Organic Gardens. With groups like Slow Foods Chicago, Slow Foods USA, and Uncommon Ground they have already started to develop partnerships that will support the orchard for years to come. As the project matures they’ll be reaching out to more people and organizations to get involved and lend a hand.

C.R.O.P. is also committed to giving back to the community. Once the orchard is bearing fruit, half it’s harvest will be distributed back to the community. The nature of this distribution will depend on where the orchard finds a home, but possible partnerships include foodbanks, nearby schools, or open-picking days for the neighborhood.

Background
The Chicago Rairities Orchard Project is a new organization founded to establish “community rare-fruit orchards” in Chicago. These orchards, designed for reclaimed urban spaces, are dedicated to preserving a few of the thousands of varieties of tree fruit that aren’t commonly grown by commercial producers.

More information is available at their website:  www.chicagorarities.org

Take Action & Voice Your Support

Please support C.R.O.P. and the Logan Square Orchard by clicking here to sign their petition.

Event sponsored by E.O. member, Megan Strell

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