Tree Bank Plants Orchard at Regional Food Bank

The Tree Bank Foundation has planted 22 fruit trees at the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma to benefit the Urban Harvest program. The orchard is made up of eleven apple and eleven peach trees, which join three existing plum trees. Two pear and another plum tree are planned for future plantings. This orchard was sponsored by Whole Foods of Oklahoma City. Urban Lawn and Landscape donated the labor and irrigation.

Urban Harvest is a sustainable gardening program that focuses on agricultural education, fresh food production, community outreach and ecological conservation. Children at Kids Cafés sites participate in “Seed to Table” lessons on the basics of growing and preparing fruits and vegetables. Choosing crops, planting seeds, composting food waste and preparing the harvest are exciting subjects that teach the importance of working together and preparing these students to make better nutritional decisions. The Regional Food Bank works with four after-school programs in Oklahoma City (and several other programs during the summer) on a weekly or biweekly basis. The food grown in the Urban Harvest gardens is used in cooking activities with these students and also sent home with them to share with their families.

“We are so excited about the new orchard and the potential to provide more fresh fruit to these children,” said Mason Weaver, Urban Harvest Director. “The opportunity to offer fresh fruit over a longer season would be a huge boost to our program.”

This is the second orchard planted by the Tree Bank through the Oklahoma Orchard program. The first was planted at Oklahoma County Social Services in 2011. For more information about the Tree Bank Foundation and its services, visit www.thetreebank.org.

About the Tree Bank Foundation

The Tree Bank Foundation was founded in 1987 by volunteer supporters interested in promoting education, planting, care, and beautification of our state through a wide network of organizations and individuals committed to distributing trees. Its mission is “to promote and plant trees to enrich Oklahoma communities.” The value of the more than 200,000 trees brought to the state through the Tree Bank has been estimated to be more than $240 million at maturity.