Earlier this week, Governor Jay Inslee issued a “stay-at-home” order which has further tightened the COVID-19 public safety guidance announced earlier. Yes, we know. It’s surreal world we live in now, and it can even feel a little scary at times. We hope this newsletter brightens your day.
While fruit is our jam, City Fruit is also about community. In this time where isolation is becoming the norm, we want you to know that your City Fruit community is here for you. While we all try to do our best to help mitigate the spread of the virus, we are also yearning for things that we can do, safely, to stay connected and healthy. Here are some of our ideas…
1. Enjoy the fruit tree blossoms (while practicing social distancing)
One bright spot over the last few weeks is that the weather has been rather pleasant – and the fruit trees are blooming as if they are cheering us up! While we mostly stay home except for essential activities, it is okay to go outside to exercise (please don’t congregate!). If you choose to go for a walk or a run, or if you are lucky enough to have a blooming tree in proximity, then make sure to take a moment to appreciate the beauty of the splendid nature.
Lots of flowering cherries and flowering pears are still blooming right now, as well as some varieties of plum. And soon apple trees will join the festivities and adorn many streets of Seattle with their pretty blossoms. For more info on the bloom schedule and how to identify different flowers visit www.cityfruit.org/blog/seabloomwatch
2. Tend your garden and grow food
Another way to recharge your body and mind and feel good about your day is gardening (again, make sure to follow the social distance guidelines). We’ve been hearing from many folks who have been spending a lot of time in their gardens, getting their hands dirty, enjoying the fresh air and the feeling of accomplishment.
Here are some gardening tips from our friends at Swansons Nursery: www.swansonsnursery.com/nw-gardening-tips/
. March is a great time to plant some edible plants such as strawberries and blueberries, as well as fruit trees!
3. Bake up a storm!
Stuck at home with a lot of time on your hands? Many people find baking to be therapeutic and, of course, you will be rewarded with delicious baked goods afterwards.
If you are up for a semi-long term baking project (because, let’s face it, we’ll be home for a while…) then did you know you can cultivate natural yeast from apple skin? Apples, as well as other fruit like grapes and peaches, are a good source of wild yeast. Here is a page with lots of good information about how to make your own apple yeast starter and how to take care of it: www.breadexperience.com/you-are-apple-of-my-starter/
. Once you have your starter ready, you can bake so many different things, including many types of bread (like the ciabatta bread below), pizza, sweet breads (hello cinnamon rolls!), English muffins and many more
4. Express your gratitude
It’s been said that expressing gratitude can lift everyone’s spirit, including your own. And during these trying times we have so many people to be thankful for – all the healthcare professionals, grocery and food services, delivery, and public transportation workers and everyone else who is working hard to provide essential services so we can stay safe.
At City Fruit, we are particularly thankful for our community partners in the local emergency food systems who continue to serve our city’s most vulnerable population by providing vital services that are needed more than ever. We recently reached out to many of our community partners to find out about their immediate needs and how we can assist them.
We hope you are all staying safe, and taking good care of yourself and one another.
We cannot wait to see you all at the orchard work parties, workshops and Fruit for All Pop-ups on the other side, hopefully soon. Till then, stay safe and be well!