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ENVISION THIS: An edible urban forest garden that inspires the community to gather together, grow their own food, and rehabilitate their local ecosystem

Our guest, Melanie Coerver, of Beacon Food Forest in Seattle, has joined with her community to design, plant, and grow an edible urban forest garden to improve public health by regenerating their public land, reducing agricultural climate impact, improving local food security, providing educational opportunities, and celebrating growing food for the benefit of all species.

A food forest is a gardening technique or land management system, which mimics a woodland ecosystem by substituting edible trees, shrubs, perennials and annuals. Fruit and nut trees make up the upper level, while berry shrubs, edible perennials and annuals make up the lower levels. The Beacon Food Forest combines aspects of native habitat rehabilitation with edible forest gardening. ??Their goal is to bring the richly diverse Seattle community together by fostering a Permaculture Tree Guild approach to urban farming and land stewardship. By building a community around sharing food with the public, they are becoming inclusive to all in need of food.

At their website, http://www.beaconfoodforest.org,  they say, “By building a community around sharing food with the public we hope to be inclusive to all in need of food. ??The Food Forest is set to include an Edible Arboretum with fruits gathered from regions around the world, a Berry Patch for canning, gleaning and picking, a Nut Grove with trees providing shade and sustenance, a Community Garden using the p-patch model for families to grow their own food, a Gathering Plaza for celebration and education, a Kid's Area for education and play and a Living Gateway to connect and serve as portals as you meander through the forest.”