Food, fields and trees are all essential parts of the work we do. And if we manage them right, we create not only edible resources or lovely neighborhood open spaces, but areas that could be called Cultural Landscapes as well.
These are places rich with association, dreams, vision, history; places that help ground people, bind us to each other, and give us a deeper sense of home, of sharing, of pride. They can be works of art, narrators and transmitters of culture, expressions of identity.
One of the many reasons I love working with people and fruit trees is that it allows me to help transform space into place; an overlooked lot into a shared orchard; a spot of social (and often environmental and economic) waste into a place of communal trust.
Orchards were, after all, the original paradise. That is what the root of paradise means – fertile, verdant fruit gardens. How good it is to try to make Baltimore a paradise.