One of the reasons we created crone + forest was to plant trees. This thread by @BuildSoil helps to explain “why chestnuts”:

In my understanding chestnut trees can be implemented as a keystone species to build a community of species that form a food forest! A nutritious, low maintenance, grain replacement.

In December of 2020 I started this project with 2 lbs of chinese chestnuts that I planted in my apartment nursery.

a mass of chestnut seedlings clustered under growlights

In September of 2021 we planted out the trees at a site in West Baltimore, creating a harvest agreement with the residents and planning to care for the trees regularly.

flower farmer Rodney prepping a tree tube to protect the seedling

In choosing a place to plant, the site we chose is part of an existing orchard, home to other fruit and nut trees. Some of the foods already growing on the site are: pears, apples, cherries, and heartnuts.

volunteer Louisa filling in dirt as the chestnut seedling goes into the ground

We love urban farming, it’s important to us to plant where we create a lasting impact in the places where people live. Even if the impact is just reducing the heat island effect it would be a success, but as the trees mature they’ll produce food that can support food sovereignty in Baltimore City and produce biomass to build soil!

volunteer Gisele grips the stem of the chestnut seedling as she adjusts it’s placement

Our volunteers really did a great job with the planting, staking, putting on the tree tubes, and mulching the trees. In just a few minutes they were pros!

volunteer Luisa assembles a tree tube around a seedling

This was the proudest accomplishment of my first year in farming. Moreso than a successful flower season, planting these trees proved that farming can be a support to food forestry.

volunteer Blaze assembles a tree tube

I can’t wait to do more! Already a batch of pawpaw seeds are inching towards germination in the nursery.

volunteer Mitch secures a tree tube around a seedling

Let’s grow more flowers and food together!

a cluster of six freshly planted trees, with tree tubes applied, staked, and mulched

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1 Comment

  1. Hello I am a program coordinator at Second Chance, a non-profit located in Baltimore, Maryland. Our mission of Retrain, Reclaim, Renew is defined by our workforce development program for those facing extreme employment challenges. We provide a living classroom through the “green” deconstruction of homes and businesses, reclaiming and renewing the materials through sales in our 250,000 sq. ft. warehouse.
    Our added mission this year is the promotion of “community”, the artisans and small business enterprises that are at the heart of what can make one thrive. In light of this we are holding a “Community Spot Light Festival” throughout the year. Our proposal is to provide a space within our retail warehouse to highlight participants on a rotating monthly basis. A table or display case may be set up displaying and promoting your organization. There is no charge, our goal is to solidify the idea of community and community support-local, national and international-particularly during these challenging times. The area may be manned or unmanned. Many of our participants man their displays a few weekend days a month for personal contact and/or sales with our customers. All funds are retained by you as the vendor.
    The story and mission of Crone + Forest Flowers is very impressive. We would love to have you participate during the month of April; exposing your business to our large and varied audience, including web and social media. During this month we are featuring community gardens, independent florists and artisans whose work is inspired by nature. I realize this time of year can be a very busy one for you. We are happy to aid you in the setup of your display, which can consist of flyers and/or photographs and contact information. We can provide tables and/or a cabinet for your use. Should tis be of interest to you I am happy to discuss details and answer any questions you may have. Best. Chris DerDerian

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