Become a Master Fruit Tree Steward

Meet a Master Fruit Tree Steward: Ross Mazur

Calling all fruit tree enthusiasts! We are now accepting applications for the 2019 Master Fruit Tree Steward (MFTS) Program. If you love fruit trees and want to be able to better care for fruit trees in your own backyard, at a neighbor’s house, or in public orchards to help preserve Seattle’s urban fruit canopy, then this program is for you!

MFTS classes prepare community members to grow, cultivate and care for fruit trees in the greater Seattle community. The program is open to students of all ages, perspectives, and abilities. There will be a total of 6 hands-on workshops that combine both classroom and urban orchard experiences to gain skills in identifying, planting, pruning, harvesting and sharing fruit from local fruit trees. The instruction fee is $250 plus a $45 material fee. The program is limited to 16 students so fill out your application soon! The registration will close on November 30.

2019 Class Dates
2019 Learning Sessions:: Feb 1, March 2, April 3
2019 Practical Sessions: June 8, July 13, August 17

Interested in becoming a Master Fruit Tree Steward? Or know someone who might be interested in enrolling in the program? Then meet Ross Mazur, a 2018 MFTS program graduate and a veteran City Fruit volunteer.
Q:    What made you want to enroll in the program?
A:    I was initially drawn to the course because I am interested in fruit and nut orcharding, and have tinkered with perennials management in various settings, but had no prior topic-specific structured education on the topic. The combination of having a hands-on organized course with a service component really jived with me.

Q:    What did you learn? Have you been able to apply what you learned in the program to real-life situations?
A:    The main learnings I had from this course pertained to tree pruning, pest identification and management, and considerations and approaches for growing fruit specifically in the PNW (and how this differs from growing on the east side of the cascades). This knowledge has been applied mostly at volunteer pruning sessions, but also quite frequently in conversations with whoever I find myself speaking with in a potluck setting.

Q:    What was your favorite experience/excursion/skill/lesson that you learned during the program?
A:    This whole class was amazing, too difficult to choose the “Favorite” experience, although having Natalie as the instructor really made the course so great. One of the best takeaways was gaining a level of comfort pruning apple and pear trees. Beyond that, I really enjoyed exploring past stewards’ properties and projects; seeing how they had created amazing spaces full of edible perennials, hearing stories of the site development, lessons learned along the way. Seeing these sites in person and listening to the creator really brings the white board and textbook lessons to life. The next best part of the course was information gleaned from having the lecture be somewhat of a Socratic Seminar, and benefiting from the collective knowledge base was beyond amazing.

Q:    Any advice for future Master Fruit Tree Stewards?
A:    Just enroll in the course. You will be appreciated for simply bringing your unique perspective to the class. It’s good stuff.


Master Fruit Tree Stewards: Class of 2018

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