Having fruit trees means having a very beneficial individual nearby. Not only it produces fruit, it also can provide us with fresh air with a lot of oxygen, become natural filter for dust particles, provide shades to cool the temperature down, and a lot more.
Imagine having those benefits from planting fruit trees, in places that need it the most: public space. We all know that public spaces need pollutant absorbents, some shades, and natural filter for floating dust. And having edible fruit that we can enjoy while visiting it would be incredible.
That’s what Copenhagen City Council are intending to do. They are planning to plant fruit trees in public spaces including sidewalks, so that people can enjoy all of those things immediately. Should you envy with the city?
Why don’t every single city in the world does so? What are the pros and cons from this decision? Here in this article let’s talk about all of those.
Foods For Some
Who on earth just doesn’t love to eat fruit, any kind of it? We all naturally love fruit since birth, and that’s why often times fruits are made to be the gateway food parents give to their kids so that they want to eat vegetables.
Apart from favoritism, fruits are basically food which means we can eat it to gain energy and nutrition. Having them around wherever we go is a good idea, because who knows when will we want to eat fruit to taste the flavor and get the nutrition?
That’s the consideration used by Copenhagen City Council for its recent decision. Starting from now, whenever the city needs to plant trees for greenery in public space, it would be fruit tree that people can freely enjoy the harvest.
In addition to filling people’s tummies, what the council want is interaction between human and its environment. “Foraging connects people with what’s around them,” says Mikkel-Lau Mikkelsen, program manager at Vild Mad.
VIld Mad itself is an organization that educates people about the benefits of foraging. According to the organization, foraging benefits not only human’s gastronomic health, but also the environment too. That’s why, they support the decision to plant fruit trees in public space.
New Nordic Push To Copenhagen
We have so many public spaces, including parks and sidewalk, that require the presence of trees. But lack of interaction, like mentioned above, makes it bland in our memory and doesn’t give anything positive to boost our minds.
“We think of the city as something that we all own. We want all this collectively owned area to be something that people can use and interact with,” said Astrid Aller, a Copenhagen City Councilor from the Socialist People’s Party.
With recent trend sparked by Claus Meyer, Denmark’s most famous food personality, foraging becomes something happening in the country thanks to his New Nordic Cuisine. Using the trend, Copenhagen City Council want to connect people and its surrounding more, and providing fruit trees will facilitate that.
New Nordic Cuisine is a culinary style using ingredients native to Scandinavia area and focuses only on it. By this, it means that residents might have to forage for the ingredients in their own backyards or any other places around them.
“It’s the ultimate way to really experience the nature they’re in: to taste it,” said René Redzepi, one of the brains behind New Nordic Cuisine and the chef Noma restaurant. The new trend along with the council’s decision, will make the whole city the embodiment of grab-and-go snacking.
What Are The Benefits?
We are here to talk about the topic, and we definitely will need to take a look at the benefits of planting fruit trees in public spaces. We have mentioned some above, which are need pollutant absorbents, some shades, and natural filter for floating dust, and having edible fruit that we can enjoy anytime.
Kids love fruit, and thus having it around would make them enjoy public space more. Tourists visiting the city will also find it amusing to them. Not only attractive, but it would also be fulfilling, making the memory not only stays in their head but also in their guts.
Having edible fruit around public spaces will also introduce healthy lifestyle to people visiting it. When watching people eating fruit and see how they enjoy it, there is a tendency that you will also try to have a taste to what they eat. Let alone having it for free.
Another benefit is we can directly help people in needs. Those who cannot afford healthy food can get their basic nutrients supply from foraging fruits. The healthier the residents, the happier city it would become. Sometimes the solution for our problems is that simple.
Fruit trees are also ‘political’, because it can teach people to think about alternatives to industrial agricultures. “It plays into our general understanding of the city as a place that’s owned collectively. We are in need of a healthy understanding of food systems and where food comes from,” said Aller.
But There Might Be Problems..
Of course, it will not always be rainbows and butterflies, because apparently there is a reason why not every single city on earth try to plant more fruit trees in their public spaces like Copenhagen. One of the reasons is about who will eat the produce and how much will be eaten.
The number of fruits or berries produced will be a problem for residents if it is too many or too few. Too many will result in rotten fruits falling from the trees, which will taint the beauty of the city. And too few will make it lose its of hype.
Another problem is how the city’s pollution will affect the trees and the fruits. The reason we want to eat fruit is because it is healthy, while in big cities the pollution level is so high that it might contaminate the fruit whether it is from the outside or from the inside.
To tackle all of those problems in one go, we need a really supportive government that will do their best effort to make sure this well-meaning idea successful. Copenhagen has declared its commitment to do the best, and we hope it can be a great example for other cities in the future.