Wild Town Orchard Press Release

New Waterford’s Wild Town is seeking fruit trees!

Do you have a fruit tree or two growing in your yard? If so, Wild Town would like to hear from you!

Wild Town—a non-profit food education organization, based in New Waterford—is launching its Wild Town Orchard project, an open access food security initiative to map the fruit trees of New Waterford and area.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the vulnerability of a food system based on sourcing food from away,” explains Wild Town founder, Nicole Dixon. “Any interruption in our food supply chain could be disastrous. Not only have food prices increased, but a lack of foreign workers normally employed to harvest our food may result in massive food shortages in the very near future.”

Dixon believes that the only solution to this impending food crisis is to grow, glean, and source food locally.

Dixon will work this summer with Kendra MacKinnon, Wild Town’s apprentice gardener—a position made possible through the Nova Scotia Department of Community Services Career Rising program. Dixon and MacKinnon will map fruit trees in the New Waterford area. The goal of the map is to locate and describe area fruit trees. Once the map is developed it can be used by Wild Town and others to find and harvest fruit that would typically fall to the ground each autumn and be wasted. 

“We’re looking for apple trees, mostly, but also pear, sour cherry, grapes—any fruit tree or bush you know of,” Dixon says. “There are thousands of fruit trees and bushes all over town—but now we need citizens’ help to find them!”

If you have fruit trees in your yard, or know of an area where one or more grow, you can visit wildtown.ca/orchard to fill out their form. Wild Town is only mapping trees in and around New Waterford, Lingan, Scotchtown, River Ryan, New Victoria, and Victoria Mines.

“Once submitted, we’ll be by to take a picture of your tree, record the GPS, and add it to our database.”

In return, tree registrants will share in a portion of the potential harvest. Though they’ll have to be patient. 

“It’ll take a few years to taste test fruit,” Dixon says. “That way we’ll know what apples, for example, are good for eating, and which ones are better for cider.”

For more information about the Wild Town Orchard Project, go to: https://wildtown.ca/orchard/about/

You can fill out the fruit tree form, here: https://wildtown.ca/orchard/

To contact Nicole Dixon, email bloom@wildtown.ca or phone 902-304-8247.

About Wild Town

Wild Town is a non-profit land-based healing and food education organization located in New Waterford, Unama’ki (Cape Breton Island). 

With the understanding that good, locally-produced food can revitalize the physical and mental health of people and communities, Wild Town is committed to actions that promote land-based healing and regenerative food production.

For more information, please visit wildtown.ca