The primary purpose of the Innovation Food Forest is to restore the natural cycles, biodiversity, and habitat of a forest (capturing and using energy, water, and other resources) while providing sustainable (perennial) food sources for people and wildlife. Anyone can walk into the site and harvest its bounty, as long as they know what to look for, do it safely, and leave some to share with others.
The Innovation Food Forest is located in the heart of campus, between Innovation Hall and the Johnson Center on the Fairfax campus, at 4699 Mattaponi River Ln.
It is a garden designed using permaculture (permanent agriculture) and was created in 2013 by Elizabeth Torrens after she was inspired by the Permaculture Design Certification Course hosted on Mason's campus in 2012. The Innovation Food Forest is an ecological model and an educational resource for the George Mason University campus.
You can sign-up to volunteer at the Food Forest through the Sustainable Sign-Ups Portal. Students, faculty and staff can also help lead landscaping design and planting projects. Learn more about our Greenhouse and Gardens Academic Internship Program.