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Community Orcharding

Community work days can be a big help to any local orchardist. source: The Principles of Fruit Growing by L.H.Bailey, 1897, 1926.
Community work days can be a big
help to any local orchardist.
(source: The Principles of Fruit
Growing by L.H. Bailey
, 1897, 1926.)

Fruit grown locally comes fresher and tastier. The choice of varieties gets to be astounding. Families who know their farmers share in a vital connection to the land. And that in turn means you are informed about decisions of how that fruit is grown.


We need to grow healthy food in the places where we live.

Discover unusual varieties like Calville Blanc at a community orchard specializing in heirloom apples. Photo by Michael Phillips.
Discover unusual varieties like
Calville Blanc at a community
orchard specializing in
heirloom apples.

The venerable apple is absolutely what it should be when orchardists steward the growing of fruit with health-enhancing practices. Holistic Orcharding goes beyond certified organic, encompasses biodynamic principles, and at the same time is accommodating enough to recognize that some growers – in some places – facing certain pressures – in some seasons – may indeed feel compelled to use limited allopathic measures to keep a small-scale orchard viable. Ignoring the ecological cost of transporting food from thousands of miles away is wrong. What's right is helping consumers understand the dynamics that go into 'one good apple' and clearly pointing the way to where such fruit can be found.

Finding a Community Orchard

Anyone looking for a local connection to healthy fruit needs to know several things.


  • Farmers label their growing philosophy under all sorts of banners. We ignore all that jazz on this site, seeking instead consensus on health-enhancing practices.
  • Holistic orcharding offers sound alternatives to a chemically-dependent approach. Still, this decision hinges on local pest dynamics and economic factors. A few community orchardists may use a chemical as a means of dealing with an overwhelming situation. This is not a decision taken lightly: growers do this with deep understanding of the ramifications to their orchard’s ecosystem. Please feel free to ask each grower about his or her need to employ allopathic means. The success of this network — through the grower-inspired research we're undertaking — will help us improve diversified farm systems and thus make the 'natural apple' all the more attainable.
  • Farmers are among the local heroes who can help this messed-up material world get back on a sustainable track. Orchardists work hard at high cost subject to the vagaries of the weather. Accordingly. . .
  • Nutrient-dense fruit costs what it takes to grow it. Farmers should be paid a premium for investing in holistic practices that produce healthier food.
  • Quite a few chemicals are applied for aesthetic purpose. 'Fruit without flaw' is a misnomer when we begin to understand how nutritionally empty the products of industrial agriculture have become. Lighten up, folks. Trust your local farmer. A little fungal spotting on the occasional apple is not a worm.


Community Orchards Near You

Community Orchard Listings are provided on a regional basis. Eventually each region will have its own page to help apple lovers find the nearest and bestest source of local fruit.

Good fruit grown with intimate care nourishes local economy as well as our health. Photo by Michael Phillips.
Good fruit grown with intimate care nourishes local economy as well as our health.

Nutrient-dense apples, peaches, plums, pears, cherries and berries are vital to how our bodies renew and sustain human health. This so-called nutrient density results from nourishing a living soils system that in turn nourishes the trees that in turn give us nourishing fruit. Pests and fungal disease occur along the way to varying degrees in each place. Orchardists must choose wisely to deal with these pressures in ways that do not diminish the nutritional value of the fruit being grown. You can get penetrating answers about how things are done when that fruit is sold directly to you by the grower.


Community Orchardist Standards

Growers interested in a community orchardist listing on this site need to know a few things as well.


  • Philosophical approval of one's farming practices is a tough nut to crack! Embracing radiant system health in the orchard does suggest certain Holistic Core Values we should strive to achieve in the growing of good fruit.
  • Growers who see value in a listing on these holistic orcharding pages need to ante up. A suggested donation of $100 covers necessary ground. Network membership will cover listing costs and add to collective research funds.
  • Locally-based marketing will start regionally. This website is being set up to be prominent in the search engine race whenever anyone types 'organic apples' (and similar healthy orchard phrasing) into Google. Fruit lovers are definitely going to find you!

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file updated Sunday, 3 January 2021