Arcosanti - An Urban Laboratory in the Arizona Desert.


November 22. 2013

Over the last few weeks the crew of staff, volunteers and workshop participants harvested over 2100 lbs of olives, here at Arcosanti and Cosanti.

Planning intern Rawaf el Rawaf.

[photo: workshop participant Colleen Connery]

Planning intern Francesca Fontana and workshop participant Dillon Quibin peaking out of the tree.

[photo: Sue Kirsch]

Workshop participant Adam Shimoni and construction staff Paolo Van Erp.

[photo: workshop participant Colleen Connery]

The olives will be pressed for olive oil.

[photo: Sue Kirsch]

Arcosanti offers fresh local greens to the public!

Arcosanti residents Dan Reiff, David Tollas and Nadia Begin (along with Nadia and David's son Sasha) brought a delicious selection of kale, collard greens, chard, and basil to the Big Bug Creek Farm Store in Mayer, AZ.  The greens made a splash and joined other local products for sale at this new local shop.

[Dan, Sasha and David at the Mayer farmstore, photo by Nadia Begin and text by Samantha Rose]

Eating fresh, healthy, and local food is an important part of Soleri's sustainable urban design philosophy and Arcosanti currently has 3 greenhouses that produce a variety of fruits and veggies throughout the year. 

[Dan Reiff in one of the two camp greenhouses, photo by Chihiro Saito and text by Samantha Rose]

Every weekday we have a small farmers market on site that  sells our greenhouse produce to residents and the Arcosanti Cafe.

[Dan Reiff, Isaac Mueske, Mandy Chen and Nadia Begin at farmers market in the Vaults, photo by Chihiro Saito and text by Samantha Rose]

In addition, our Construction Department and workshop participants are currently constructing a new 44' x 75' terraced greenhouse.  This structure is the first prototype of a larger Energy Apron that will one day wrap the entire south face of the Arcosanti Mesa.

For more information on Arcosanti's new Greenhouse/Energy Apron Prototype and to make a donation visit here.

The Big Bug Creek Farm Store is located at 13282 Central Ave in Mayer, AZ.  They are open Monday - Saturday 10am - 6pm and Sunday 11am - 6pm.

[photo by Nadia Begin and text by Samantha Rose]

November 24. 2010

On Wednesday, November 17th, we harvested olives at Arcosanti.

The crew started at 7:30 am and worked into the afternoon picking olives to be pressed for olive oil. Workshop participants as well as community members gathered together to pick olives, first the shorter trees in the Minds Garden and then the taller trees around the main Arcosanti site.

A lot of olives on the shorter trees could be reached from the ground, or on tip-toes.

A ladder was used to get into the tops of the trees. A bucket could be hung around the neck to keep the hands free.

The harvest continued the next day at Cosanti with the workshop participants the only workers. The final results: 839 pounds at Arcosanti and 465 pounds at Cosanti!

? All of the garlic was transported to the East Crescent and suspended for drying in the heat-duct tunnel.

? Agriculture volunteer Erin O’Rourke coordinated the effort.
The garlic has dried and is now braided.
Erin O'Rourke with alumna Anna Greenberg and a crew member of Flam Chen.

? Fresh garlic braids are now for sale in the gallery and bakery.

? At the beginning of June workshop participants, volunteers and staff joined efforts in the gardens for the annual garlic harvest.

? Some of the Arcosanti kids, on summer vacation, got right into the action.

? This report continues on 7/10/09.

The photos here were taken exactly one month ago by Gen Yamamura.

? The Arcosanti Organics crew has been busy at work this week with the annual Garlic Harvest. Agriculture staff / volunteers, as well as the Construction crew and one of the kids on summer vacation have all been part of picking. In late Autumn, the Paulownia Garden was planted with about a quarter acre of garlic cloves.

? As well, another few rows of the flavour-rich vegetable were planted in the Chicken Garden. The farmers are at work delicately pulling the garlic from the ground. It is important not to damage either the head or the stalk, since the garlic will be braided together at a later date.

? Having a 'cash crop' like this is quite important to the Arcosanti Organics crew. This garlic is sold at the Farmers' Markets here at Arcosanti, but also in Prescott and surrounding communities - and, come fall, the vegetable will be entered in the County Fair competition.

? Arcosanti Organic Gardens are bustling with spring activities. The peach trees are in full pink bloom, making the orchard a splendid view from any point of the Arcosanti site.

? Agriculture staff Katie Schroeder diligently clips another branch. Pruning has been the agenda for the garden crew these days, which is quite a project for a small team of farmers and an acre of orchard! The beautiful cuttings now brighten the Cafe and other spaces.

? Agriculture Manager Lisa Willott irrigates a recently planted bed in the Paulownia Garden. Willott and crew are alternating the growing beds of garlic with new crops, including broccoli and celery in this case. (Note the 'row cover' that acts a simultaneous protector against varmints and the adjusting vernal temperatures.)

January 14. 2008

? Gorgeous temperatures during the later part of last week favored outdoor planting for the Arcosanti Organics crew.
Katie Schroeder (l) and Agriculture Manager Lisa Willott (r) bask in the sun while putting potatoes into the ground.

? Ally Lennhouts celebrates the progress of the greens in the recently refurbished cold frames, located at the Agua Fria River's edge.

? Adam Nordfors managed the agriculture department from 2000 to 2005. He now studies at ASU and visits Arcosanti on his winter break.
Paul Katan (l) and Adam Nordfors (r) work on the International. Thanks to their mechanical prowess, the tractor was running and en route to the ranch barn by mid-afternoon.

? We complete our report from 1/7/08, of the cob construction of a new chicken coop in the gardens last summer.
Will and Betta build a roost ladder for the future occupants of the new coop.
Morning light shines through the recycled bottle design on the northeast wall and through the air vents below the nesting boxes.

? Happy chickens dig for grubs in the yard of their new home. The chicken coop can house up to 100 birds to supply eggs for Arcosanti residents and the Café.

? The new chicken coop is inaugurated with a scrumptious Arcosanti garden grown feast! [see report from 10/15/07].