• A 2010 Sitka Health Summit project starts to bear fruit

RedApplesKCAW

GreenApplesKCAWOne of the 2010 Sitka Health Summit community wellness projects was to plant a bunch of apple, crabapple and cherry trees around town as a way to provide fresh fruit for people as they wander about Sitka.

When we planted the trees, we knew it would take a couple of years before we started seeing any fruit. Several of the trees were planted on public land, with several Sitka residents also buying the saplings to plant at their homes and offices.

On Tuesday, Sept. 10, a couple of the trees planted in front of the historic Cable House (home of the KCAW-Raven Radio station and the Larkspur Café) were full of apples, even though a couple of weeks earlier it didn’t appear these smaller trees had any fruit.  It’s nice to see some of the trees are producing.

 

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• Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative to host public fruit tree planting party on April 23

The Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative will host a public fruit tree planting event starting at 9 a.m. on Saturday, April 23, at the Hames Athletic and Wellness Center. The first tree planted will be dedicated in memory of noted Sitka historian Bob DeArmond, who was 99 when he passed away on Nov. 26, 2010.

The plan on April 23, is for volunteers to plant a few fruit trees in front of the Hames Athletic and Wellness Center (tools and snacks will be provided). The volunteers then will move on to plant trees at St. Peter’s Fellowship Farm, a communal garden run by the Sitka Local Foods Network located behind St. Peter’s By The Sea Episcopal Church. Other planting locations on Saturday include the Betty Eliason Child Care Center, KCAW-Raven Radio and either Sealing Cove or Pacific High School. A total of 22 trees will be planted on Saturday.

The Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative hopes to plant 200 apple, crabapple or cherry trees in Sitka before the next Sitka Health Summit on Sept. 30-Oct. 1, 2011. This will be the first public planting of fruit trees since the 2010 Sitka Health Summit, when the project started. Several individuals, families and businesses around Sitka also have ordered fruit trees to plant this year.

For more information about the Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative or the Sitka Local Foods Network, contact Doug Osborne at 747-3752 or Lisa Sadleir-Hart at 747-5985.

• Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative planting group to meet on Tuesday, Jan. 18

Apples are still on the tree in front of a house on Sawmill Creek Road in early December 2010.

Apples are still on the tree in front of a house on Sawmill Creek Road in early December 2010.

The Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative planting work group will meet from 7-8:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 18, at Harrigan Centennial Hall. All members of the public are welcome to attend.

The Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative hopes to plant 200 apple, crabapple or cherry trees in Sitka before the next Sitka Health Summit on Sept. 30-Oct. 1, 2011. The group just turned in an order of 40 “project” apple trees — 30 Williams Pride and 10 Pristine — with Garden Ventures. Penny Brown, owner of Garden Ventures, also has an order of 60 fruit trees coming for her regular supply.

A key agenda item will be updating the list of possible locations to plant the fruit trees. Several local residents already have expressed interest in purchasing trees to grow in their yards, and the group has worked with local businesses, churches and other landowners to see if they are interested in trees.

The Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative continues to host fundraising events where Sitka residents can buy shares of fruit trees for $100 (full), $50 (half) or $25 (quarter). They also can buy shares in fruit-producing berry bushes ($25). The fruit tree shares make nice alternative gifts, and purchasers receive a certificate to give. To learn more, contact Lisa Sadleir-Hart of the Sitka Local Foods Network at 747-5985. The gift information brochure is posted below as a PDF file.

• Sitka Fruit Tree Project gift information brochure

• Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative to meet on Monday, Dec. 13

Apples are still on the tree in front of a house on Sawmill Creek Road in early December 2010.

Apples are still on the tree in front of a house on Sawmill Creek Road in early December 2010.

Folks working on the Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative will meet at 7 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 13, at Harrigan Centennial Hall.

The Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative hopes to plant 200 apple, crabapple or cherry trees in Sitka before the next Sitka Health Summit on Sept. 30-Oct. 1, 2011. The group just turned in an order of 40 “project” apple trees — 30 Williams Pride and 10 Pristine — with Garden Ventures. Penny Brown, owner of Garden Ventures, also has an order of 60 fruit trees coming for her regular supply.

In the meantime, the Sitka Fruit Tree Initiative continues to host fundraising events where Sitka residents can buy shares of fruit trees for $100 (full), $50 (half) or $25 (quarter). They also can buy shares in fruit-producing berry bushes ($25). The fruit tree shares make nice alternative gifts this holiday season, and purchasers receive a certificate to place under the Christmas tree. To learn more, contact Lisa Sadleir-Hart of the Sitka Local Foods Network at 747-5985. The gift information brochure is posted below as a PDF file.

• Sitka Fruit Tree Project gift information brochure

• Sitka Fruit Tree Planting Work Group to sell shares of fruit trees at SCAPS Christmas Bazaar

Crabapples growing on a tree

Crabapples growing on a tree

The Sitka Fruit Tree Planting Work Group will host a booth to sell fruit tree shares at the Sitka Counseling And Prevention Services (SCAPS) Christmas Bazaar from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 27, at Harrigan Centennial Hall.

The work group will be selling shares in fruit trees, which is a fundraiser to get the money the group needs to purchase the 200 apple, crabapple and cherry trees it plans to plant in Sitka before the next Sitka Health Summit (Sept. 30-Oct. 1, 2011). The tree shares will be sold as quarter shares ($25), half shares ($50) and full shares ($100). People also can buy a share in fruit-bearing bushes ($25 each). This is one of four community health priority projects decided at the 2010 Sitka Health Summit on Oct. 4-5, 2010.

People who buy shares in the fruit trees will receive a gift certificate that can be given as an alternate present this holiday season. The trees will be planted around town this spring, with the idea that not only will the fruit trees beautify Sitka but they also will provide people with a tasty treat as they walk by. Once the trees are planted and start bearing fruit, a portion of the fruit will be donated to local organizations that provide free or reduced-cost meals to people in need.

For more information, contact Lisa Sadleir-Hart of the Sitka Local Foods Network at 747-5985. For those who can’t attend Saturday’s bazaar, the PDF file posted below has information on how to order tree shares.

• Sitka Fruit Tree Project gift information brochure

• Sitka Health Summit project to plant 200 fruit trees gains momentum

A cluster of Parkland apples (photo from the Alaska Pioneer Fruit Growers Association gallery, http://www.apfga.org/)

A cluster of Parkland apples (photo from the Alaska Pioneer Fruit Growers Association gallery, http://www.apfga.org/)

The work group formed during the 2010 Sitka Health Summit to plant 200 fruit trees in Sitka met on Monday, Nov. 8, and the project is gaining momentum.

The group plans to plant 200 apple, crabapple or cherry trees in Sitka before the next Sitka Health Summit on Sept. 30-Oct. 1, 2011. The work group has been researching which trees grow best in Sitka’s climate, researching possible funding sources, and researching possible locations to plant 200 fruit trees around the community. The work group also might plant some berry bushes around town to complement the fruit trees.

The group will go public with some of its plans during the Sitka Conservation Society‘s wild foods potluck and annual meeting from at 5-8 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 13, at Harrigan Centennial Hall.

A couple of members in the work group attended the city’s Tree and Landscape Committee’s meeting later in the week and presented a list of about 3-4 dozen locations around Sitka they think might make good locations for fruit trees.

Notes from both meetings are posted below as PDF files. The next meeting for the 200 fruit trees in Sitka work group is from 7-8:30 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 13, at Harrigan Centennial Hall. For more information, contact Kari Lundgren at kari.lundgren@searhc.org or 738-2089.

• Notes from the Sitka Fruit Tree Planting Work Group meeting held on Nov. 8, 2010

• List of possible fruit tree locations presented at the Sitka Tree and Landscape Committee