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Posts from — February 2010

Brooklyn high school to sow own urban farm, for fresh food


BK Farmyards: Developing a 1-Acre Youth Farm – achieves funding goal

Associated Press
February 28, 2010

NEW YORK – Students at one Brooklyn high school won’t learn about farming from textbooks in the near future. They’ll learn directly from the soil. Students at the High School for Public Service in East Flatbush plan to break ground in April on a 10,000-square-foot vegetable farm on their campus’ front lawn. The first crop of vegetables could be harvested in June.

Principal Ben Shuldiner says the goal is to teach the skills and science behind farming. Fresh produce will also be offered to the community. Senior Elliot Bowman says it’s difficult to find fresh produce in the neighborhood.

Urban farming collective BK Farmyards will design and operate the farm, which is expected to cover the school’s entire 1-acre yard in four years.

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February 28, 2010   Comments Off on Brooklyn high school to sow own urban farm, for fresh food

Havana harvest: Organic agriculture in Cuba’s capital

cuba11The 44th Street and Fifth Avenue Organoponico in Havana. They always grow lettuce, both acelga espanol and acelga bok choy, spinach, radishes, green onions, garlic chives (which they call ajo montana), arugula, chicory, green beans, carrots, watercress, apio (celery), parsley, broccoli and an Argentine green bean that looks like a snap pea on steroids. They also raise medicinals – aloe vera, manzanilla (camomile), tilo, mejorana, cana mexicana, yerba buena, and another kind of mint. A sign explains the health benefits of chicory. – Photo: Scott Braley

Havana Harvest

by Mickey Ellinger and Scott Braley
San Francisco Bay View
February 26, 2010


“Del cantero a la mesa: from the garden bed to the table,” says the banner outside the urban garden at 44th Street and Fifth Avenue in Havana’s Playa district. People are lined up at the counter to buy today’s harvest: lettuce, spinach, bok choy, garlic chives.

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February 27, 2010   Comments Off on Havana harvest: Organic agriculture in Cuba’s capital

The New Urban Farmer – new book


The New Urban Farmer
By Celia Brooks-Brown
Quadrille Publishing Ltd
March 2010

As the New Urban Farmer, Celia has been detailing the day-to-day goings on at her North London allotment since April 2007 through her blog for the Times Online, and March 2010 sees the launch of her monthly column, “Grow to Eat’, in BBC Good Food Magazine.

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February 26, 2010   Comments Off on The New Urban Farmer – new book

Christie Brinkley – vegetable gardener


In the garden with Christie Brinkley

Interview with Jessica Damiano
August 14, 2009

How did you become interested in gardening?

I grew up on the beach in Malibu, and we didn’t have gardens there. My house was on a pile of sand. My mom had a couple of ice plants in a container on the deck, so, for me to get my hands in the soil, I was so intimidated. I thought I had to be an expert.

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February 26, 2010   Comments Off on Christie Brinkley – vegetable gardener

From online Farmville to offline urban farms – shared commons


Let’s Come Back Offline

from Learning from Farmville
by Stephanie Smith
Jan 29, 2010


Let’s come back offline and bring our new social networking toolkit with us. Why don’t we create an urban farm that integrates everything we’re learning about community-based sharing from both the physical and the virtual realms? This farm would be an online/offline mash-up of social and community infrastructures that could act as a model for how our 21st century ‘commons’ will work. Sounds to me like the kind of utopia Stewart Brand and “the hippies who built the internet” first imagined, and that can finally be realized today.

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February 25, 2010   1 Comment

Camille Pissarro (1830-1903) Impressionist painter of farm and garden scenes

womenplantingpea stakes1891Women Planting Pea Stakes, 1891

Camille Pissarro

Excerpt from

Born July 10, 1830 in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands. Camille Pissarro was sent to Paris to study as a boy, where he earned acclaim for his budding talent as an artist. He was obligated to return to St. Thomas in 1847 to help his father run his general store, but by 1855, he had convinced his parents to allow him to pursue his dream of becoming a painter.

Camille Pissarro returned to Paris, where the landscapes of Camille Corot and other members of the Barbizon group made a huge impression on him at the World’s Fair. The concept of working directly from nature appealed to the young artist, and he gravitated toward landscape painting. Over the next 10 years, he studied at the prestigious École des Beaux-Arts and at the Académie Suisse, where classes were free.

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February 25, 2010   Comments Off on Camille Pissarro (1830-1903) Impressionist painter of farm and garden scenes

Urban Food Growing in Havana, Cuba from BBC’s “Around the World in 80 Gardens” (2008)

Garden number 5. Cuba – Alberto’s Huerto, Havana. An urban vegetable garden in the space left by a collapsed building.

Around the World in 80 Gardens – BBC

Around the World in 80 Gardens was a television series of 10 programmes in which British gardener and broadcaster Monty Don visited 80 of the world’s most celebrated gardens. The series was filmed over a period of 18 months and was first broadcast on BBC Two from 27 January to 30 March 2008. A book and DVD based on the series were also published.

These food gardens were featured the series:

Garden number 32. USA – Liz Christy Garden, Manhattan, New York. The first community garden in New York City, founded in 1973 by local resident Liz Christy on a vacant lot on the corner of Bowery and Houston Street.

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February 24, 2010   Comments Off on Urban Food Growing in Havana, Cuba from BBC’s “Around the World in 80 Gardens” (2008)

San Diego’s urban farmers

Photo by Don Kohlbauer. See complete series of beautiful photos – and audio here.

Meet the pioneers planting crops in the shadow of downtown skyscrapers

By Erin Glass,
San Diego News Network
March 18, 2009

About a year ago, Karon Klipple, a mathematics professor at San Diego City College, took a long, hard look at the campus lawn.

With all the talk about global warming, the benefits of eating local and organic food, not to mention San Diego’s drought worries, it seemed the land and resources might be put to better use. So Klipple, who is chair of City College’s Environmental Stewardship Committee, founded Seeds at City, a thriving sub-acre farm smack dab on the downtown campus.

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February 24, 2010   1 Comment

City Farmer shines a positive light on the environmental movement during the Olympics

Sharon and Michael, of Vancouver’s Compost Demonstration Garden, take us on a tour of their site, including the various new technologies that make composting, gardening and greening more urban home friendly.

Positively Green

By Katrina Prescott
February 23, 2010

Through W2 we will be broadcasting shows focused on the environment during the Olympics (and hopefully beyond).

Our vision is to create a daily broadcast in which we will shine a positive light on the environmental movement of visions and solutions. We are looking to send out a positive empowering message of how people are taking initiatives into their own hands to tackle their concerns and create their visions. We want to leave the viewers empowered about how easy it is to be green, what they can do/change in their daily lives to have lower their carbon footprint.

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February 24, 2010   Comments Off on City Farmer shines a positive light on the environmental movement during the Olympics

Urban Plots – Chicago

Farm interns share stories of dirt, bugs, and trips to Starbucks.

By Carrie Golus
Photography by Dan Dry
The Core, College Magazine of the University of Chicago
Winter 2010

To her family in North Carolina, “a farm in a city doesn’t make any sense,” says third-year Emily Howe. “Even my friends here don’t understand. They think I work indoors or on a rooftop.”

“I’ve worked on a big pumpkin farm before,” says fourth-year Elspeth McGarvey, who grew up in Arcola, Illinois, population 2,700. “The weirdest part for me isn’t the dirt, or the grossness. It’s being right next to Western Avenue.”

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February 23, 2010   Comments Off on Urban Plots – Chicago

Richard Adams’s Kitchen Gardens

kitchengardenThe Kitchen Garden.

British artist, Richard Adams’s Kitchen Gardens

Richard Adams (b. 1960) received a BA Hons in Graphic Design at Leicester Polytechnic. He spent his childhood amidst the British countryside in the south Cotswolds. Its outstanding landscape has had a strong and lasting influence on his art work.

Richard Adams creates a dream world often adding ‘odd’ people that seem to float above the ground and seldom stand upright. Full of humour Richard Adams paintings are beautifully drawn and highly imaginative.

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February 22, 2010   Comments Off on Richard Adams’s Kitchen Gardens

Out of the Scientist’s Garden


Out of the Scientist’s Garden – A Story of Water and Food

By Richard Stirzaker
CSIRO Publishing
January 2010

Out of the Scientist’s Garden is written for anyone who wants to understand food and water a little better – for those growing vegetables in a garden, food in a subsistence plot or crops on vast irrigated plains. It is also for anyone who has never grown anything before but has wondered how we will feed a growing population in a world of shrinking resources.

Although a practising scientist in the field of water and agriculture, the author has written, in story form accessible to a wide audience, about the drama of how the world feeds itself. The book starts in his own fruit and vegetable garden, exploring the ‘how and why’ questions about the way things grow, before moving on to stories about soil, rivers, aquifers and irrigation. The book closes with a brief history of agriculture, how the world feeds itself today and how to think through some of the big conundrums of modern food production.

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February 22, 2010   Comments Off on Out of the Scientist’s Garden

Urban farming on the rise in Bloomington, Indiana

Photos by Jami Scholl

Urban farming on the rise

By Carrol Krause
Herald-Times Homes
February 13, 2010


Jami Scholl is a local garden designer who uses permaculture principles to create beautiful, edible landscapes that taste as good as they look. Jami is now taking her passion for “foodscaping” one step further; she has begun working with city government council members and planners in order to clarify the elements of urban agriculture that will be acceptable throughout Bloomington.

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February 22, 2010   Comments Off on Urban farming on the rise in Bloomington, Indiana

A Colorado Potluck – Growing Our Urban Agriculture

Founded in early 2009, The Grow Local Colorado Campaign is a project of representatives from the Living Earth Center, Transition Denver, The Mile High Business Alliance and Denver Botanic Gardens.

Grow Local Colorado is currently focusing on these primary projects.

Local Parks Edible Gardens Project

Local Garden Registration

Garden Space Exchange

Grow Local Colorado Events

Visit their website here.

February 21, 2010   Comments Off on A Colorado Potluck – Growing Our Urban Agriculture

Urban farm movement is taking root in Akron, Ohio

akronUrban farming at Braddock Farms (Photo courtesy Susanna Meyer)

Training for local growers starts next month

By Denise Ellsworth
Special to the Beacon Journal
Feb 20, 2010


Thanks to enthusiasm and support from partners in the Summit Food Policy Coalition, a group started last year to address food access in Summit County, Akron is jumping on the urban farming band wagon. The Summit Urban Farming Initiative (SUFI), a seven-week training program, will begin in March at the Akron General Wellness Center in Bath Township.

The pilot program, co-sponsored by OSU Extension of Summit County, Akron’s Department of Planning and Urban Development and the Summit Food Policy Coalition, will be offered on Thursday evenings through April.

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February 21, 2010   Comments Off on Urban farm movement is taking root in Akron, Ohio