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Holistic Orchard Network Support
Remember the baseball movie, Field of Dreams? Build it and they will come spoke to a different theme than ours. And yet we're planting a community orchard (of the virtual sort!), holding faith that enough growers will see the worth of supporting an active website and coordinating orchard research based on holistic parameters. We could say plant it and you will come . . . and now, thankfully, you have indeed arrived.
This network is about bringing Orchard Health to the fore. Health is not a concept emphasized in the national organic certification standards. Nor does health necessarily have value in research trials as reductionist agriculture will never be able to grasp the worth of woodsy compost, fungal allies, herbal remedies, biodiversity, and tree-ripened fruit. The health contained in nutrient-dense fruit supports our health. That is 'the word' driving all we are going to achieve in community-based orchards as we learn how to better grow wholesome fruit.
Stewardship emanates from growers who love the trees and the soil and the community they serve. Networking allows us to discern biological nuance and fine tune local challenges in the light of holistic thinking. Grow Organic Apples is the place to do this. End of sales pitch, okay?
Any such effort requires support so that the burden isn't all on a few. Sharing the direct costs of maintaining this orchard website and our Online Community brings the biological approach to light. Fruit lovers contributing to the cause help enable the vital research needed for community-based orcharding to succeed. The prospects of this vision are spelled out on a separate page we're calling The Boring Bit. Please spend a moment and evaluate for yourself what it takes to make this site possible.
Sending a check
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So? Will you consider making a supporting donation now? Our 'public radio model' for accepting contributions is set up in increments of $5. You decide the value of what this networking effort is worth to you. Growers who reach the cumulative support level of $100 become full-fledged members with particular benefits. Please know that your ongoing support will continue to be just as vital. All contributors will be recognized in upcoming Community Orchardist newsletters, be you a grower, fruit lover, organization, or company sponsoring these efforts.
The network as it now exists is set up as Michael's baby, if you will. Going the route of non-profit status is perfectly acceptable to 'our coordinator' if indeed the energy builds to go that route. That kind of step is definitely about mutual commitment to the cause. Trust and honesty can take us a long way in the meanwhile.
Knowing that your support is forthcoming calls for a toast.
Cider glasses, everyone . . .
Oh, Apple Tree we'll wassail thee,
in hopes that thou will bear.
The lord does know that health will come,
with love and thought and neem.
Bring forth the herbs and syrphid flies,
. . . let curc her mark abate.
For we are one in strong resolve,
to share such healthy fruit,
with child, mother, father, all --
A toast to blessed earth!
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