Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Foot-loose and Fruit For Free

Last night, in multi-tasking mode, I thought I would get some exercise and stock my refrigerator at the same time. I set off at dusk, enjoying the first cool breezes of the day. Wearing my workout clothes and comfortable walking shoes, I set off with my gleaning gear. Whenever I walk, I make sure to carry my lightweight backpack, which weighs almost nothing when empty, a few plastic bags, and some seeds for guerilla planting. The trails where I walk border on many backyards. Most of these have fruit trees which overhang the trail. As I stride along, I watch for any ripe fruit which has fallen, or may be hanging within reach on the public side of the fence. If I find a spot where someone's sprinklers overshoot the fence, I go ahead and plant a fruit seed. You never know which of these may sprout and in a few years' time, be fair game for gleaning.

Last night's wasn't a very good haul, only one grapefruit, but I got a nice long walk in, and I spotted some avocado trees which will be ripe for the picking soon. Past strolls have netted bags of apricots, oranges and tangerines, some slightly wizened apples and peaches from trees on an abandoned homesite, mulberries from another abandoned lot, bunches of wild grapes, figs and so many avocados I had to make guacamole and freeze it.

Tonight I'm going to check on some peaches that were almost ripe yesterday. You should keep your eyes open in your neighborhood and see what free fruit awaits you!


donnanoonon said...

What a great idea! I'm going to see what's in my neck of the woods!

rabbitgrandma said...

It's amazing what you find when you're not looking down at your feet! I've found lots of free books, knicknacks, garden stuff and even new, or almost, furniture and appliances!!!