Evergreen BC builds an urban orchard in Vancouver

This summer, an orchard has begun to take shape in a small post-industrial site on the Great Northern Way Campus, home of Evergreen BC.

In Vancouver 2020: A Bright Green Future, the City identified local food systems as an essential aspect of urban health and sustainability.

The Great Northern Way Community Orchard responds to this initiative, serving as a venue for research in the field of urban agriculture, while addressing a number of pressing social, environmental and economic needs including increasing community food sovereignty and access to green space.

On May 28, enthusiastic volunteers joined us to prepare the orchard site and plant . This is no ordinary orchard—it uses huge planter boxes to grow over 30 locally adapted apple trees, dozens of strawberries, raspberries, huckleberries and more. It has completely transformed the space from cement and gravel to urban oasis, without having to use a jackhammer. The orchard remains “mobile,” so that in future years, the planter boxes can be moved to different locations.

With the help of local youth, the Evergreen team will be working hard over the summer to expand and animate the space. Local artists will be invited to participate in the creation of a “green community hub,” where people can enjoy a melding of urban food production, green space and creative construction.

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