Does this fruit look familiar? It should, though you’ve likely never thought to eat it. This is the edible fruit of the strawberry tree, which are prolific in parks and neighborhoods around the Region.

(shutterstock)

Does this fruit look familiar? It should, though you’ve likely never thought to eat it. This is the edible fruit of the strawberry tree, which are prolific in parks and neighborhoods around the Region.

(shutterstock)

Coming to a Sidewalk Near You

The one-stop resource for gleaning food from your own neighborhood

Back Article Aug 2, 2014 By Allison Joy

Thousands of pounds of urban produce are growing on trees and bushes all around you, and if you know where to look, you can gather enough fruits and vegetables to stock a food bank, plan a dinner menu and can a dozen jars of organic blackberry preserves.

Fallingfruit.org is an interactive map of urban edibles that aims to be the world’s most comprehensive guide to gleaning free fruit. It’s opensource, the entire database of tree locations is free to download and users are encouraged to add their own finds. The site also provides a list of local charities that collect and distribute fresh produce, in case you pick more than you can chew.  

Click “Changes” to see recently added edibles. As of press, the newest additions in the Capital Region were apple and Meyer lemon trees in Davis.

To date, the FallingFruit’s map has cataloged 758 types of edibles (mostly but not entirely plant species) spanning 611,933 locations worldwide. The most commonly logged tree is the honey locust — the pulp of which was used for food by Native Americans and can also be fermented to make beer.

According to the FallingFruit team, “Beyond the cultivated and commonplace to the exotic flavors of foreign plants and the long-forgotten culinary uses of native plants, foraging in your neighborhood is a journey through time and across cultures.” So log on, find a spot and get picking!

Do you know what’s in your neighborhood?

North Sac: The stretch east of Rio Linda Boulevard, south of South Avenue and north of Riviera Drive is a serious money spot, with apricots, persimmons, pomegranates, peaches and even bananas growing on public property — and that’s just a start.

Woodland: The students at Woodland Community College don’t even need to pack snacks. The campus is practically surrounded by cherry plum trees.

Roseville: East of False Ravine Park in Roseville, clusters of strawberry trees line Alexandra Drive. You’ve likely never considered eating the round, brightly colored fruits, which are just a bit bigger than cherries, but they can be used to make excellent jams and liquors.

 

Where do you forage? Let us know in the comments!

Post new comment

65667411863 » If you have a visual disability, please type the numbers two one three three into the box. Your submission will be promptly reviewed by a validation service and sent to the site administrators.
By proving you are not a machine, you help us prevent spam and keep the site secure.

Recommended For You

Naturalist Nouvelle

Unearthing a new restaurant concept

Six months ago, Kevin O’Connor hit a wall. He had a good job in a good kitchen, but his body was exhausted and his passion was gone. So, at 24, he decided to step down as the chef of the now-shuttered Blackbird Kitchen & Bar and dig for a new plan.

Jan 3, 2014 Douglas Curley