I think this is a very important topic because a big issue people here tend to find is a lack of quality, ripe fruits in their markets. Many fruits are picked when unripe to increase transit times from tree to market as well as being firm enough to not be crushed/smushed/bruised when they make it to the market. Some fruits do not truly ripen when picked early. Yes, they may turn soft and turn the right color, but they may not develop the proper sugar level when picked early. So, if we have any land or a yard capable of even one fruit tree, we can make a huge impact on our lives as well as our community. Has anyone seen a single mature satsuma tree loaded with fruit? Or a single mature pear tree, mulberry tree, etc in full season? It's prolific. I challenge anyone here to eat ALL the fruit that drops. Nearly impossible. Now, if I had one satsuma tree, and you had one pear tree, and you had one plum tree, think of the possibilities. Fruit swapping, forging new friendships, communities...

 

This site is an international database with conventional and organic farm/orchard listings by parishes, counties, prefectures, etc where you go to the farm and pick your own fruits so you can pick the ripest of the ripe. And since you're doing the labor the prices are usually super cheap. They will sometimes have picked fruit themselves that you can buy if you didn't pick enough yourself. You may be surprised, as was I, that there are several pick-your-owns within 20 miles of your house.

http://www.pickyourown.org/

 

Green Dean on youtube has a channel called Eat the Weeds. 

 

http://www.youtube.com/user/EatTheWeeds

 

This guy is great! He lives in Florida and has well over 100 videos on identifying wild edibles. He does a thorough job so you know for sure how to identify the plant he is doing in the video and he's just fun to watch. Not much more than a thousand years ago there were people who ate more than 100 types of wild greens. Nowadays we tend to eat only a handful of varieties of greens. Learning wild edible greens and fruits can help us restore seasonal diversity to ensure we get a balance of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients we need in our diet.

 

This leads to the topic of reforestation. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gPvsl9ni-4

 

Check out this video.  This guy from Australia found a 2,000 yr old fruit forest in the desert in Morocco and has been recreating them. This video is in the extremely arid land in the dead sea valley in Jordan. He is growing self sustaining forests that create their own soil and hold moisture.  

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Kyle, "pick your own" website is fantastic! Thanks for sharing these little treasures and thanks for reminding us about the local farms. I once took my kids to a blueberry farm. We absolutely gorged on this wonderful fruit and brought bags home! The best fruit I ever had in my entire life was freshly picked of a fruit tree or a fruit bush. Fruity life is not meant to happen in a supermarket. We need the real stuff.

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