A Common Sense Solution

Growing up in Arizona, I’m used to seeing citrus trees.  I always wondered why so many of the trees had fruit on them that nobody ever picked.  I was stunned when I learned that there are actually purely ornamental fruit trees – they’re bred specifically so that the fruit is inedible.  What in the world sort of sense does that make?!

Entering our third year in Southern California fruit trees are everywhere.  Citrus trees in abundance, plus avocados.  I have visited several places where there are fruit trees that go unharvested.  Particularly as folks get older and less active, the produce trees in their yards go unharvested.  Yet I’m sure there are plenty of people that would be happy to have that produce on their tables instead of rotting on the ground.
I think our family is going to try volunteering with this group.  Backyard Bounty is a sub-program of the Santa Barbara Foodbank.  They are volunteers that will go out and harvest unwanted, unneeded, or excess produce off of fruit trees and then donate it to the foodbank so that people who are hungry can benefit from it.  I suspect that there are probably people in my congregation would benefit by having someone come out and get rid of that excess fruit from them.  When I talked with the Backyard Bounty folks, they volunteered to provide us with crates to put the produce in, and even to drive out and pick up the harvested fruit when we were done collecting it.  What a great, simple idea.  

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