Food Forest Possible in Davenport - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Food Forest Possible in Davenport

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A "food forest" in the Quad Cities.

It's an idea by a small group of people, but tonight it's gaining traction with some city leaders in Davenport getting on board.  

"I really think with the right cheerleaders and right group of volunteers, this could take off," says Davenport city Arborist, Chris Johnson. 

Johnson has been in Davenport for four year.  

Since then, he's wanted to create an area where fruit and nut bearing trees could grow, and people could pick their own food, right in Davenport. 

The idea, is called a food forest. 

"I have a dedicated amount for tree planting every year and I'm happy to purchase fruit and nut bearing trees to help this get going," Johnson explains. "Not only that, I could do it year after year so they could have a multi-generational forest."

Johnson says he has a $50,000 budget for tree planting in Davenport every year and he's willing to give a portion of that to start a food forest. 

But he can't run it himself.

"We want people to do this, but the downside is we need the volunteer base to really help get this off the ground. That seems to be where it falls short."

Now, that could be changing.

Chris Rice lives in Rock Island.

He's putting together a group willing to support a fully functional food forest. 

"There's native food growing all over the place, in your own backyard." Rice explains If you don't mow, there could be all kinds of food you can eat. People don't realize it though," 

Rice adds the idea of a food forest isn't a new one... It's ancient, and has been used all over the world. 

While he knows it won't be easy, Rice and his group are ready to take on a challenge. 

"The first thing we need to do is get people support, from the community, and we've already got a lot of support at this point."

A public meeting is set for Monday June 16 for the Quad City Food Forest at 6:30 PM.

It will be held at the Davenport Public Library on Eastern Ave. 


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