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Fukushima nuclear meltdown triggered a greater interest in urban gardening in Tokyo


Urban Farming Takes Root in Tokyo

By Jonathan DeHart
The Diplomat
June 6, 2013


Tucked away in an oasis of calm in Tokyo’s Setagaya ward, Yoshi’s apartment is like many others in urban Japan, save for one key difference. If you crack the window in his living room you’ll find a good-sized ledge with a number of pots where the 31-year-old white collar worker tends to his growing “mini-farm”.

“This is my little garden,” he told The Diplomat, pointing to different pots from which tomatoes and other low maintenance greens can be seen sprouting. “I really like the idea of growing some of my own food, even if it’s just a small part of what I eat.”

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June 11, 2013   1 Comment

Detroit’s urban farms are nothing new

Polish immigrants walk to the public potato patches Mayor Pingree established on 430 acres of city land during the panic of 1893 and subsequent depression. Pingree became a national hero for the idea, and the potato patch program was copied in other major cities. (Detroit News archives)

In the 1970s, when urban flight left the city pockmarked with thousands of vacant lots, Mayor Coleman Young instituted the Farm-A-Lot program, in which the city supplied seeds and some technical aid to citizens who were willing to put in the work of gardening those lots.

By Larry Gabriel
Detroit Free Press
June 4, 2013
Larry Gabriel is a Detroit-area writer who was named Best Columnist by the Association for Alternative Newsmedia in 2012.


In the 1950s, my dad would take me and my siblings fishing in the Detroit River two or three times a week during fishing season. We’d haul in buckets of perch, bass and pan fish, or the occasional catfish or carp. We had a garden in the yard where we grew collard greens, tomatoes and carrots. There were two cherry trees, a pear and a peach tree in our yard. We ate a lot of stuff that we produced ourselves.

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June 11, 2013   Comments Off on Detroit’s urban farms are nothing new