New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'

Random header image... Refresh for more!

Norwegian TV Show: “Farmer in the City”

farcty

Farmers attempt to teach urban families how respect for agriculture can make their lives better

TBI Vision
The show: Farmer in the City
The producer: Strix Television
The distributor: DRG Formats
The broadcaster: TV2 (Norway)
(Must see. Mike)

Farmer in the City follows three farmers as they enter cities to meet families with “terrible” attitudes to good food and healthy living. Gardens and fridges are investigated before the farmer sets the family tasks such as creating a chicken coop or growing their own food, with a larger task following. Later, the farmer returns to see if the intervention has led to lasting change.

[Read more →]

November 25, 2014   No Comments

Concordia University Greenhouses Provide Students with a Year-Round Urban Refuge

link

Sprouting Green Thumbs on Campus

By Jessica Cabana
The Link
November 18, 2014

Excerpt:

Since the Concordia Greenhouse focuses on urban sustainability and community building and raising awareness of the issues surrounding food security, the new greenhouse would focus on food production and urban agriculture.

Summer is the best growing season in Montreal and, to maximize growth production, seedlings can be started in greenhouses.

[Read more →]

November 25, 2014   No Comments

Canada’s largest urban farm feeds the needy

Our future is growing right in your backyard

Alberta Primetime
Nov 2014

On an 11-acre parcel of land just west of Canada Olympic Park, a group of dedicated volunteers turned the soil and harvested the first crop on Canada’s largest urban agricultural farm. Our goal is to grow fresh produce for the Calgary Interfaith Food Bank to ensure all Calgarians have access to healthy, local food.

[Read more →]

November 24, 2014   No Comments

Nancy Coleman’s tomato plant went berserk with fruit – Victory Gardener

nancyC

Movie Stars 1943

By Jessie Henderson
Fun on The Farm
Photoplay Magazine 1943

On the day Nancy Coleman found she was to be a star, she bought a house and an acre of land in the Valley. It’s near the homes of Marsha Hunt and Richard Carlson. To greet their fellow actor, they each sent her a gift, with a card that said, “Welcome, Neighbour!”

From the Carlson home came a tomato plant; from Marsha Hunt lettuce seeds. The tomato plant went berserk with fruit (or is it vegetables?), till one day it broke in two from the weight of its yield – Nancy knowing naught about propping it up with sticks. The lettuce seeds, to the surprise of Nancy and Marsha both, turned into virulent weeds with yellow flowers.

[Read more →]

November 24, 2014   No Comments

In Pursuit of Resilient Community Gardens

inpursuit

A Comparison between Bottom-Up and Hybrid Initiatives in New York and Amsterdam

By Beatriz Pineda,
Spanish urban planner and architect living in Amsterdam
This academic article is the final product of the Research Master’s in Urban Studies conducted at the University of Amsterdam (2012-2014).

Except from Abstract:

The numerous bottom-up initiatives appearing in Western cities, especially since the outbreak of the economic crisis in 2008, leads this research to focus on the future and endurance of these projects. Sometimes implemented and maintained only by citizens, other times supported by institutions, all of these initiatives aim at becoming successful and resilient. But how to measure the resilience of these grassroots efforts is still open to debate.

[Read more →]

November 23, 2014   No Comments

LA Urban Farms Growing Cheap, Healthy, Delicious Food for Residents

laclub
A rooftop garden on the Jonathan Club building in downtown Los Angeles on Nov. 11, 2014. The garden was built by Jason McClain, the executive chef of the Jonathan Club, and the produce is used at the club’s restaurant. (Sarah Le/Epoch Times)

The Los Angeles Food Policy Council estimates that 8,600 parcels would be eligible if the bill, AB 551, is approved by the County Board of Supervisors.

By Sarah Le,
Epoch Times
November 16, 2014

Excerpt:

LOS ANGELES—Nestled in re-purposed horse troughs are rows of fresh, organic spinach, cilantro, and basil on top of the Jonathan Club in downtown L.A.

Jason McClain, executive chef of the Jonathan Club built the garden with his father, a retired 72-year-old landscape architect, one and a half years ago.

“When you come up here, and you pick it, and then you cook it, and you make it, and you taste it, you see the difference, and that is just extraordinary,” said McClain.

[Read more →]

November 23, 2014   No Comments

Twins who keep urban chickens score wins at Royal Agricultural Winter Fair

twins
Matthew Patel, left, holds a Light Sussex, and twin brother Andrew holds a Red Dorking in the backyard of their Leaside home. They got into the backyard chicken business a few years back — and this year they exhibited 17 chickens at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair — scoring a number of wins. Photo by David Cooper.

Andrew and Matthew Patel have an unusual hobby – they are backyard chicken farmers

By: Vanessa Lu Business
Vancouver Sun
Nov 15 2014

Excerpt:

“It was the most amazing thing ever,” said Andrew, who has become an advocate for the underground chicken farming movement. “We didn’t expect to win anything,” added Matthew, in a fast-paced interview where the twins finish each other’s sentences.

They had been to the fair for the last few years, fascinated by the poultry competition, but decided this year was their last chance because they are planning to head off to university next fall.

[Read more →]

November 22, 2014   No Comments

Student Entrepreneur Earning Buzz in Effort to Feed World’s Hungry

greent

He thinks the use of “vertical agriculture” will allow agriculture to expand into previously non-agricultural areas – places like cities.

By Michael Martin Garrett
State College
November 17, 2014

Excerpt:

Zeangle, and the rest of the Green Towers team, has been getting a lot of attention for a design that Zeangle thinks can solve the problem – or at least get agriculture moving in the right direction. He calls it a “living wall.”

He describes it as a vertical conveyer belt that moves around a central point powered by a water wheel. All along the wall are boxes for plants grown using hydroponics – a technique that uses water and nutrients without the need for soil.

[Read more →]

November 22, 2014   No Comments

Montreal cubic farmer aims to grow 500 heads of lettuce a year in a single square foot

cubic
Richard Groome, president and CEO of Les Aliments Urban Barns Inc., shows his Cubic Farming facility in Mirabel, Quebec. Photo by Christinne Muschi for National Post.

Where ‘Star Trek meets farming’

Excerpt:

Urban Barns, opened this past June, is home to the first realized cubic farm from which, it is expected, as many as 500 heads of lettuce will grow each year from a single square foot of industrial space. It takes less than 30 days to grow a head of greens here, where conditions are always optimum. The produce is organic, and pesticide, herbicide and fungicide-free and if the playbook is followed, they will be picked and, within hours, be on a shelf at a nearby IGA.

[Read more →]

November 21, 2014   No Comments

Forget Chicken Coops—Fish Ponds Could Be the Future of Urban Farming

aq

Aquaponics systems allow you to raise both vegetables and fish in tight spaces.

By Sarah McColl
Take Part
November 13, 2014

Excerpt:

In a 950-square-foot second-floor walk-up in Manhattan, Jonathan Kadish grows rainbow chard, bok choy, and lettuce in a four-foot-square nook near his desk. It’s a two-story system: A soilless bed sits atop a fish tank in which two $3 pet-store goldfish swim. Kadish’s tiny garden is intended as a supplemental food source only, but it’s a small, urban-scale model of sustainable agriculture that has a growing number of people excited. “I get people from all over the world who ask to come visit and check it out,” he says.

[Read more →]

November 21, 2014   No Comments

Actress Barbara Stanwyck gardens from daybreak to backbreak – Victory Gardener

barb
While husband Robert Taylor is serving with the US Naval Air Corps, Barbara Stanwyck reads. Click on image for larger file.

Movie Stars – 1943

By Jessie Henderson
Fun on The Farm
Photoplay Magazine 1943

It’s remarkable that the stars, with picture work and war work, find time for garden work at all. Somebody asked Barbara Stanwyck, a girl who largely by her own efforts has wrung from the soil a neat little harvest and some of the biggest cutworms in California – ‘when’ she found leisure to do it.

“Oh,” Barbara replied, “I work from daybreak to backbreak!”

[Read more →]

November 21, 2014   No Comments

Honeybees bring the sweetness of urban agriculture to Cleveland’s convention center

beecleve
Matt Del Regno, executive chef at the Cleveland Convention Center and resident beekeeper, shows off a frame containing a honey-laden honeycomb. Photo Steven Litt, The Plain Dealer.

St. Clair estimated that Cuyahoga County now has about 200 hobbyist beekeepers. Statewide, he said, there are about 5,500 – a number that grows every year.

By Steven Litt,
The Plain Dealer
November 13, 2014

Excerpt:

Matt Del Regno, executive chef for Levy Restaurants, the food service provider at the convention center, started keeping bees at the facility in mid-April.

Since then, he’s begun replacing commercially produced honey with his own extremely local product.

“You can taste the difference,” he said. “It’s a discernible difference.”

[Read more →]

November 20, 2014   No Comments

40 Percent Of The World’s Cropland Is In Or Near Cities

cropp
Gideon and Steven are brothers who farm maize, onions and other vegetables. Photo: Nana Kofi Acquah / IWMI

Somewhere around 1.1 billion acres is being cultivated for food in or within about 12 miles (20 kilometers) of cities.

By Eliza Barclay
NPR
November 12, 2014

Excerpt:

Anne Thebo, an environmental engineer at the University of California-Berkeley and the study’s lead author, says that the research revealed that a surprisingly large number of urban farms rely on irrigation, especially in South Asia. Since many cities in this region are growing rapidly and already face challenges accessing enough water, these farms end up competing with the city for the scarce resource.

[Read more →]

November 20, 2014   No Comments

Baltimore City eyes investing in urban flower farming

EllenBalt
Ellen Frost of Local Color Flowers.

Ellen Frost of Local Color Flowers only buys flowers from within a 100-mile radius

By Yvonne Wenger,
The Baltimore Sun
Nov 12, 2014

Excerpt:

“Flowers are a good option for people who are interested in farming but want to try something different or have a niche that sets them apart from food growers,” Frost said. “For us, it’s exciting as a viable entrepreneurial option for farmers, and to eliminate blight.”

With about a dozen urban farms operating in Baltimore, city officials are investigating other ways to use vacant lots, said Jenny Guillaume, the Growing Green Initiative coordinator for the city’s Office of Sustainability. The city started a push for more community gardens in 2011 to uplift blighted neighborhoods, give families access to more healthy food options and help unemployed residents earn money.

[Read more →]

November 20, 2014   No Comments

A Swiss firm has unveiled what it says is Europe’s largest urban farming project

hagu

Large-scale urban farming project developed in the Hague

Horticulture Week
Nov 14, 2014

UrbanFarmers of Zurich launched the EUR2.6m (£2m) UF De Schilde project on the roof and top floor of a 12-storey former TV and telephone factory in the Hague, the Netherlands. It consists of a 1,200sq m greenhouse for vegetable growing, a 300sq m indoor fish farm and a 250sq m indoor hydroponic production facility incorporating LED lighting.

[Read more →]

November 19, 2014   No Comments