Local Fruit Tree Planting Project is Blossoming

MANCHESTER - Transition Town Manchester (TTM) is aiming to sell 350 trees by October 24 in support of 350.org's International Day of Climate Change Action, Bill McKibben's global grassroots initiative to reduce atmospheric carbon emission limits.

Through a local partnership with Mettowee Mill Nursery, TTM is making peach, pear, cherry, apple and plum trees available for $25. In the spring, teams of trained volunteers will also deliver and plant the bare-root, zone-hardy trees.

At the Northshire Bookstore, which generously offered to let TTM launch the project with a sign-up week at a table in their foyer, Harvey Alpart expressed disappointment that his home in South Londonderry was out of planting range. Logistics restrict plantings to Manchester and adjacent towns.

"This has inspired me to think about doing this in our community," he said. "I'd love to plant some fruit trees with my grandchildren so we can learn about agriculture and watch them grow."

A woman who says she prefers her reputation as the town curmudgeon anonymously bought four trees for the Rupert Food Pantry, and has taken it upon herself to secure permission to plant from the town.

People are buying trees for all kinds of reasons. An Arlington woman's friend will receive a beautiful parchment gift certificate for a cherry and a plum tree.

"We're primarily getting the cherry for the birds," said Christine Beach of South Dorset, at Sunday's Farmers Market.

"Oh my god, my bees will be so happy," said Maddie Sobel of East Dorset, as she signed up for a cherry, a peach and two pear trees.

If you live in the middle of a dark forest, on the edge of a cliff, or in an apartment, you can ask a local church, a school, a condo association if they'd like to have some trees planted. Just be certain that the recipient will welcome the prospect of tree- tending.


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