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Urban garden a ‘miracle’ for homeless men in Florida

Chris Costello, a resident at the Lord’s Place, talks describes how working in the garden helps him. Photo by Mark Randall.

“The garden is our miracle. What the garden has done is it is a place where the guys can go and meditate. When they get upset they can go outside in the garden and put their hands in the dirt.”

By Ben Wolford
Sun Sentinel
October 4, 2012


— Not long ago, Chris Costello was homeless and fighting a losing battle against alcoholism.

But these days, his whole life has changed. He’s been sober more than two years, and he has an apartment at The Lord’s Place, a recovery center in Boynton Beach.

Lately, Costella also has something to keep him busy. He and 50 other formerly homeless men on Northeast Fourth Street are finding solace and, in many ways, purpose in tending to an urban garden in their backyard. A family in Palm Beach put up $10,000 to get the project going, and the residents of this community of four neat apartment buildings are putting in the sweat equity.

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Reining In Urban Farming – No More RTFA Protection?

By Aaron M. Phelps
National Law Review
Oct 5, 2012
Aaron’s practice is focused on commercial and environmental litigation in state and federal courts and Michigan Agriculture Law. On the commercial side, Aaron regularly represents clients in contract disputes, breach of warranty claims, UCC issues, shareholder disputes, and telecommunications matters.


In 2000, the Michigan Legislature amended the Michigan Right to Farm Act (RTFA), making it one of the most protective farm statutes in the country. One of its more potent features is that it overrules any local ordinances that conflict with it or the Generally Accepted Agricultural Management Practices (GAAMPS) of the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development (MDARD). The GAAMPs are critical to the reach of the RFTA.

If a farm complies with GAAMPs, then it is protected under the RTFA. If a farm does not comply with GAAMPs, it is not protected under the RTFA.

Similarly, if an ordinance purports to regulate farming beyond what is required in the GAAMPs, then it is unenforceable.

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Path to Food Preservation: Householding

Preserving Pears and how to store preserves

By Food Farmer Earth
“A journey of wide discovery about our food, and sustainable agriculture. Documentary stories; cooking and the craft of food; interviews and thoughtful reflections about our food system”
Oct 2, 2012

“Householding seeks to restore the pride and practice of home economics with an emphasis on sustainability, equity, and health.” — Harriet Fasenfest, author of The Householder’s Guide to the Universe

In this video, Harriet Fasenfest shares practical tips for how to put up food for use throughout the year. If you are thinking about growing and preserving your own food, Fasenfest outlines an approach to bring you greater satisfaction meeting your own food production and food preservation needs while developing a closer connection with nature.

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