Buy a Bush! Fairhaven Outback Farm

$1,980
39%
Raised toward our $5,000 Goal
37 Donors
4
days left
Project ends on November 04, at 10:00 PM PST
Project Owners

Buy a Bush fall fundraiser for the Outback Farm

The Farm

WWU is unique in that we have a farm right on campus! For 48 years, the Outback Farm has created an opportunity for experimentation, learning, reflection, advocacy, and agriculture. We feature permaculture practices and are home to community gardens, chickens, crop production rows, a teaching apiary, bat boxes, vernal pools and a delineated wetland.

We’re a student-driven farm with a staff of employees and teams of volunteers, hosting an average of a dozen classes a year. Our program welcomes all students to engage in ecosystem restoration, community building, and food justice as they learn about the importance of farming for empowerment, resilience, and health. The Outback was recently named one of the top 40 ranking college farms in America by CollegeRanker.com.

The Forest Garden

Two acres of our campus farm are a dedicated food forest – a method of cultivation that is great for the environment through building soil, banking carbon, and creating habitat for pollinators and wildlife. We grow a blend of perennials that generate fruits, nuts, fiber, and herbs, including pear, shipova, apple, quince, and plum trees. We also cultivate filberts and chestnuts, as well as cold-hardy kiwi, grapes, and nine kinds of berries. The produce we gather from the system goes directly to feeding students who need access to fresh, healthy food.

This agroforestry site allows us to teach about concepts like systems design, permaculture, no-till agriculture, and traditional, multicultural systems of food production. But unlike a traditional classroom, students can see and experience these concepts in an established system – and then get their hands dirty through planting, harvesting, processing, pruning, and composting.

The Challenge:

Food forests, when established, are fully functioning ecosystems and only require regular maintenance. Without enough desired plants, however, we can weed and weed and never really get the upper hand on the space. A fully functioning food forest requires a lot of plant material! We need your help to fill our beds with beautiful, productive, perennial plants.

Join us! 

By making a donation to the Outback Farm, you are directly helping us build a beautiful, sustainable, productive food forest to be enjoyed for generations. You become part of our team as we inspire students to engage with agriculture, the environment, and a resilient future. We look forward to sharing photos, videos, and updates of our progress with you.

Thank You

Levels
Choose a giving level

$10

Plant

We need a lot of plant cover to block out weeds, retain soil, attract pollinators, and provide habitat for native birds and insects. Perennial plants like rosemary, sage, thyme, echinacea, agrimony, and sedum will help create a productive, and beautiful, forest garden.

$25

Bush

The Outback has an ideal climate for growing berries, and we’d like to cultivate tasty fruit like blueberries, raspberries, huckleberries along with native plants like salmon berry and thimbleberry. We would like to offer lesser-known varieties too, like goumi and autumn olive.

$50

Tree

We’ve identified areas for adding fruit and nut trees to the food forest. Some common fruits like plum, apple, and pear will be joined by special trees like quince, shipova, and cold-hearty fig. Filberts and chestnuts help bring in protein sources and diversify the forest.

$100

Guild

In permaculture terms, a “guild” is a group of plants intentionally grown together in a way that benefits them all. It’s like companion planting on a larger scale! It’s common to have a guild around a tree with plants performing different roles, like a pest repeller, a nitrogen fixer, a ground cover, a pollinator attractor, etc. At this donation level, we would be able to cultivate an entire family of plants.

$200

Guild + Tools

All this work requires tools! At this level of support, we would be able to acquire important tools to facilitate our planting and maintenance – including shovels, loppers, snips, and a new wheelbarrow.

$300

Mushroom Garden

An exciting new development on the farm is preparing space for the inoculation of a mushroom cultivation garden. Mushrooms are luscious, nutritious, and fascinating to grow. They’re also in high demand from students facing food insecurity, and we believe we can provide a seasonal supply of a variety of mushrooms – but we need to purchase growth medium, spores for inoculation, and containers for harvest and distribution.

$1,000

Hillside

Are you able to support the farm in a larger way? We’d love your support to convert two hillsides into productive, attractive, and regenerative forest gardens! One hill is hot and dry, allowing us to explore plants that might thrive in a more Mediterranean climate like Artemisia and fig. The other needs multiple guilds and berry patches.

Our Crowdfunding Groups