New York City isn't exactly known for its plethora of free space. So how'd an apple orchard just ... appear?

Image from Reuters/Carlo Allegri.

While land might be at a premium, it turns out there's plenty of space in the East River.

Photo courtesy of Swale/Jason DeCrow/AP Images for Strongbow.


Established in 2016 by artist Mary Mattingly, this awesome garden is built on top of an old construction barge.

Photo courtesy of Swale/Jason DeCrow/AP Images for Strongbow.

The project, known as "Swale," was sponsored by two nonprofits, the New York Foundation for the Arts and A Blade of Grass. The new orchard is a partnership with Strongbow Cider.

Image from Reuters/Carlo Allegri.

Instead of hauling sand to construction sites, the barge now gives New Yorkers a chance to pick their own food.

Image from Reuters/Carlo Allegri.

For the rest of the summer, it'll be hanging out in Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Manhattan.

Visitors can forage for fruits, vegetables, and apparently, pianos.

Image from Reuters/Carlo Allegri.

The farm has a garden, aquaponics area, and an apple orchard. It's open to the public, though people might have to wait their turn to board, and it also includes workshops and edible/medicinal plant tours.

Photo courtesy of Swale/Jason DeCrow/AP Images for Strongbow.

Swale’s free for people who visit.

It's about challenging our notions of where we grow food.

Image from Reuters/Carlo Allegri.

"At its heart, Swale is a call to action," said Mattingly on the project's website. "It asks us to reconsider our food systems, to confirm our belief in food as a human right and to pave pathways to create public food in public space."

A lot of us have no idea where our food actually comes from, especially if we live in a city.

We don't see the costs either: the farmer's time, the gas it took to drive it here, the packaging it came in — these are largely invisible.

By putting the garden front and center, Swale hopes to make people rethink how our cities eat.

Learn more about the project in the a video of the project below: