Boozhoo Aanii! Hope you are all well!
Harvest of many things is now upon us and we are getting busy. I have been off with illness (non-covid) so my apologies that I haven’t been keeping the harvest schedule online up to date.
If you are able and interested in helping us gather foods, the best way currently is the following.
- check the http://fallingfruit.org website for fruit and nut trees near you or look around your neighbourhood or parks for different ones on public or friendly lands
—> ripening July and August: hazelnuts, apricots, blueberries, cranberries (end of August), currants, gooseberries, grapes (end of August), plums, raspberries, and strawberries.
—> start looking for trees in your area for fall harvest: oak (acorns), beechnut, hickory nuts, butternut, chestnuts crabapples, pears, and apples.
—^ if you are able, clean and preserve your collection (we have some jars available if needed). If you are unable to preserve yourself by canning, drying, dehydrating, pickling, or making low sugar jams or jellies (we use 1:4 honey:water mix for most berries so our diabetic community can still enjoy), and have a good amount, please message me and I’ll let you know where you can drop it so they can be preserved. Most fruits need to be processed within a day, two most.
- if you have garden space, and are currently growing other fruits or vegetables, same as above. If you are able to preserve the vegetables or fruits yourself, please do so, as our few canners have their hands pretty full at the moment with all the berries. If not, no problem! You can message us when it is ready to be picked up or dropped off.
- if you have garden space for next year, please reach out towards early to mid fall time and we can help you figure out how to prepare the beds for next season.
- if you are a hunter or fisher and have an abundance, we ask that if you are able to clean and preserve it (dry, smoke, freeze, can) that you please do. If you are unable, we will still gladly accept the meat for community needs.
We also need helpers for the following specific jobs this week:
- helping an injured community member who is growing for us just east of Guelph with some weeding and general maintenance some afternoon. You must have your own transportation to and from the location.
- helping shell black walnuts. This can be done at your leisure, at your own home, but it is a messy and difficult task at times that can stain your hands. We have a bunch that are waiting to be shelled.
Our current strategy is to try and help folks establish connections with their own neighbourhoods in terms of what is already growing there, where are forested areas nearby for potential foraging, which community members live nearby, who is growing what, and which ones may need assistance. Hyper localism, where we start to become more connected to the food locally that is already around us, and then managing those spaces and encouraging more food growth and removing invasives is how we become sustainable.
If you have growing friends who think would be interested and respectful in this space, please invite them to join us.
Miigwitch Nia:wen Nakurmiik Yaw^ko Marsii Wela’lin Thank you