Freeway Estates Community Orchard

6030 6th Ave NE, Seattle, WA 98115
Posted on January 26, 2018 / 1855
Location : Seattle
Soil Type : Native Soil

Freeway Estates Community Orchard (FECO) is a neighborhood attempt to create a productive, attractive, and peaceful space on public property. Neighbors and friends are working together to create a desirable community asset from an underutilized piece of land.

Our ongoing project shows that residents of Seattle can create opportunities for urban agriculture, consistent with the Seattle Food Action Plan. They are creating a destination for area residents to experience beauty, sit quietly, enjoy the plants and produce, learn about urban food production, meet each other and gather for neighborhood events. This project offers a way for neighbors to bond to enhance neighborhood stability and security.

The space is 12,500 square feet and located next to I-5, near the corner of NE 60th St and 6th Avenue NE in Seattle.
The land is owned by the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT).


For More Information/Schedule a Tour or Volunteer

Ruth Callard



At Freeway Estates Community Orchard, organic matter (much of it composted on site) has been the only food they have supplied their orchard trees and shrubs over the last six years. "Plants put out sugars in their root zones to attract the critters they most desire. Early succession plants, like weeds, desire soil with more bacteria. Late succession plants, such as deciduous and conifer trees, prefer fungal dominated soils.  When we make our compost, the types of inputs we use will determine whether the compost will also be bacterial or fungal dominated," write Ruth Callard in a recent blogpost, "How do we test the characteristics of our compost? We can put the finished product under the microscope and actually count how many bacteria, fungi, protozoa and nematodes we have and then convert the counts to biomass." Heavy metals in the soil is always a concern when gardening so close to a freeway, but the community gardeners concerns were relieved after Freeway Estates Community Orchard tested the soil and found that lead levels fell well below EPA standards.
Do you have stories of gardening or volunteering at Freeway Estates Community Orchard?  Include the here by sharing with
Community Garden
Cooking Demonstrations
Farm Stand
Food Access/Food Bank
Food Forest
Individual Garden Spaces
Learning Garden
Market Garden
Pollinator Garden
Value Added Market Garden/Food Product

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