The Urban Orchard Project works with campus stakeholders to identify underutilized areas of campus where citrus trees can be placed in planters to grow food for students in need. This was the first project of the Edible Campus Program and was launched in April 2015 with our first gift from the Johnson Ohana Foundation. Jack and Kim Johnson worked closely with students from the Associated Students Department of Public Worms, the Associated Students Food Bank, and the UCSB Sustainability Program to conceptualize, build support for, and launch this effort. The success of this pilot laid the ground work for our hydroponic project and student farm.

Today, we have seven citrus trees planted in Storke Plaza. Two were funded by the founding support of the Johnson Ohana Foundation, three were funding by President Napolitano’s UC Global Food Initiative, one by the Associated Students Environmental Affairs Board, and the last was dedicated to the Offices of Enrollment Services and Admissions, who won the SNAP challenge.

The fruit from all seven trees is harvested and donated to the Associated Students Food Bank (ASFB) who distributes the fruit to students in need.  Through this program, ASFB can offer healthier and fresher options. Our long term goal is to double the amount of fresh produce that the ASFB distributes between our three programs: the Urban Orchard, Vertical Gardens, and Campus Farm.

Please consider helping us grow more fresh produce for students in need by supporting the Urban Orchard Program.

The Edible Campus Program participates in UCSB Give Day.  Please join our supporters, such as the Johnson Ohana Foundation to Give back and to build a more sustainable food system.  Donations can be made by visiting the Campus and Community Partnerships page of Give Day and selecting “UCSB Sustainability” under the drop down options at this link: UCSB Give Day.

For additional questions regarding giving opportunities, please contact: Katie Maynard at (805) 448-5111 or follow the giving link below.