Portable Orchard, 1972-73

Installation detail.
Installation detail.
Feast detail.
Feast detail.

Portable Orchard: Survival Piece #5: – 1972-73 – Installation with Harvesting and Feasting. Commissioned by the Gallery at California State University, Fullerton. The work was composed of twelve 4-foot in diameter hexagonal redwood boxes, three feet deep, planted with assorted citrus trees, topped by hexagonal redwood light boxes. Because of the loss of orchard and farm to ongoing suburban and industrial development and resulting smog in the area, the work was prophesied to be the last orange orchard in Orange County.

The trees were semi-dwarf, consisting of lemons, lime, kumquat, several types of orange, tangerine and avocado. The idea was to see which ones would live and which would not. The avocado tree lost a leaf a minute at the opening. All others fared well, the Myers lemon, especially well. The citrus feast, with avocado butter, different jams, juices, breads and fruit, while complemented by many for its originality, had the odd property of leaving some with an acid stomach. 20 years after the opening, a number of the trees, moved outside, were still bearing fruit.