While the generosity of area farmers is an amazing source of gleaned produce during the harvest months, we understand that the need for fresh produce is not seasonal. To provide year-round access to healthy foods, BluePrint has three urban agriculture initiatives:
The Fruit Forest
When the Geneva Peeps site on State Street was swept up in the Foundry Remediation Program, we saw an opportunity to bring the community together to re-imagine the space between North and State Streets - a common pass through between the two streets along the corner of the Peeps property. The DEC cleared the majority of the trees back there and they will be replaced in spring 2019 with fruit trees, bushes, plants, and vines! Everyone is welcome to wander through the area, learning about the various fruits (many of which are varieties created right in Geneva at Cornell AgriTech) and help themselves to what's growing. We are considering this project a pilot for what could become other fruit forests around the City.
BluePrint currently operates a 2000 square foot greenhouse for growing greens and herbs over the winter months. This food will be distributed to the same locations that receive the gleaned produce in the summer months. As this project expands, local residents will have the opportunity to utilize the greenhouse for growing starts for their own gardens.
Geneva is fortunate to have a very robust network of community gardens, managed by the Growing Geneva Together Community Garden Coalition. These gardens allow residents to tend to a plot in a neighborhood location. BluePrint is creating and managing a series of open garden beds that the community can pick from, with any remaining produce going to the Little Free Farmstands. For residents who want to participate in gardening but don't have the time or interest in tending their own dedicated plot, this provides an opportunity to garden-in-common.