Food Forests

The Emerson Street and McClanahan Food Forests are open year-round for community members to harvest seasonally available fruits and greens!

These pesticide free, planned gardens incorporates a variety of shrubs, herbs, perennial berries, and fruit and nut trees safe for human consumption. Anyone is welcome to visit and harvest! 

Emerson Street Food Forest: 4515 Emerson Street
McClanahan Food Forest: Intersection of Oliver Street & Jamestown Road

Please be respectful of the plantings and your fellow community members when visiting. Follow guidance below to know when the produce is ripe. Bring your own kitchen scissors and a basket! Wash all produce at home before eating.

Children and pets are welcome but please avoid walking through the planted beds. Dog waste stations are provided; please pick up after your pets.

Pick Your Own!

View and print the Food Forest Map for locations of harvestable items.

Note that all harvest timelines are estimates and can change based on weather conditions.

  1. Dawn Taft

    City Arborist
    Phone: (240) 487-0290

  1. Available for Harvest: April - June
  2. Coming Soon!

Harvest dates for the items below are estimates. Picking is first-come, first-served. The City cannot guarantee availability.

  • Sea Kale: Mature green leaves can be clipped and eaten raw, steamed, braised, or baked into dishes. The flowers are also edible! (anticipated April - May harvest)Blooming Seakale
  • Yaupon Holly: dry the leaves and enjoy a naturally caffeinated tea, high in antioxidants and low in tannins so it's never bitter. (anticipated April - May harvest)
  • Sorrel: Pick bright green leaves that are about 4 inches long. This herb adds a lemony flavor to salads, soups, sandwiches, and sauces. (anticipated May harvest)HVL Edible Forest-11
  • Strawberries: A crowd pleaser! Look under the leaves to pick ripe red berries (anticipated May-June harvest)HVL Edible Forest-Strawberries
  • Mulberries ‘Shangrila’: Pick dark purple berries from the trees. Mulberries can be enjoyed as fruit, made into pies and jams, or frozen and blended into smoothies! (anticipated May-June harvest)HVL Edible Forest-Mulberries

Updated March 2022

Help Sustain the Food Forest!

Residents interested in supporting the sustainability and development of the Food Forest should contact Dawn Taft, City Arborist and Environmental Programs Manager @ 240-487-0290 or

Emerson Street Food Forest
McClanahan Arbor Day Planting April 2022