It started as a few neighbors (3 miles above Pasadena, in the foothills) who had too much fruit all at one time. We set up a fruit stand and sold blackberries to passers by. We were amazed at the generosity of our neighbors, who liked to stay and chat, and even return with their own backyard fruit to give us. We later traded plums, apricots, lemons, guavas, figs, tomatoes, and other garden produce and organic free range chicken eggs with each other. We started talking to other neighbors and more joined with us deciding that it would be a good idea to share when our crops were ripe; mine being ripe at a different time than yours were. We were then able to extend our season of fresh produce from our own back yards. (RipeAltadena.com)
This is the mission of RIPE Altadena. As this local organization has grown, they’ve also come to offer classes on making jam, cheese, and bread, as well as a hands-on workshop on how to graft stone fruit trees. An additional perk? They have a database of community folks—specialized and skilled workers—who they have personally used and recommend to those who are in need of particular services.
People who have excess fruits or vegetables from their garden are welcome to join RIPE Altadena—and it is a prerequisite, having something to share, to become a member—though this weekend at the Share Faire, this requirement is being waived.
More than 60 varieties of home grown fruit and vegetables, from Apples to Zucchini, have been at our monthly park share faires (a.k.a. park swaps), including: seeds, plants, home made cheese, eggs, honey and home preserved jams. We occasionally have potluck meals, making use of our own ripe backyard produce.
Share dates are typically the fourth or last Sunday of the month, and in Summer we have an extra share on Mondays closest to the middle of the month. (RipeAltadena.com)
So, this Sunday bring your ripened lemons or extra chard and come meet some neighbors, and swap! (And if you were a RIPE member, you’d be able to take their “Killer Sourdough Bread Making Class.”) Just a thought.
Sunday, April 27th, 4:30 p.m.
Farnsworth Park, 568 Mt. Curve Ave., Altadena 91001
Meet on the north side in the covered picnic area