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Posts from — December 2013

Documentary on Community Gardening in South Wales

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Community Foodie Documentary

Dec 28, 2013
(Must see. Mike)

The Community Foodie documentary has been put together to share all the amazing work that has been done across the rural areas of Bridgend, Vale of Glamorgan and Torfaen (South Wales) to bring food growing back to the heart of the communities.

With the support of the Community Foodie Project local communities have turned their food growing visions into reality.

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December 31, 2013   Comments Off on Documentary on Community Gardening in South Wales

The Compost Club in Sonoma County, California

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A loan of $5,000 helps me to buy materials (culvert and shade cloth), plywood lids, worms, and a trommel screen sifter to complete a production farm to supply and sell compost worms.

By Rick Kaye, Founder
The Compost Club
Dec 26, 2013

Our nonprofit, The Compost Club, has been introducing school and business wide vermicompost systems in Sonoma County, California since 2003. More than 15 sites participate in our program, which now diverts 44,000 lbs. of food scraps from the landfill each year. We have an excellent track record diverting organic waste and educating others about alternatives for handling waste.

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December 31, 2013   Comments Off on The Compost Club in Sonoma County, California

1920’s – The Providence-Biltmore Hotel had a Poultry Farm and Garden on the Roof

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1927 Roof top garden Biltmore Hotel. Photo by Avery Lord. Click image for larger image.

Rhode Island hotel rooftop included 275 Muscovy ducks, which all headed for Narragansett Bay one day and were never seen again

By Shiela Lennon
Providence Journal
Sept 21, 2012
(Must read. Mike)

Excerpt from National Register of Historic Places Inventory:

During the 1920’s the Biltmore achieved some national attention when L. D. Wallick, manager of the hotel, successfully operated a vegetable garden and poultry farm on the roof of the hotel’s tower. Begun as a hobby, the venture flourished, and the hotel was soon able to provide its guests with fresh eggs, chickens, ducks, and vegetables in season.

A large cutting garden provided fresh flowers for the public and guest rooms. Plans for a small dairy herd never materialized. The roof garden was not without its problems, however, such as the occasional escape of violently flapping chickens over the parapet into Washington Street traffic and the 1927 exodus of the entire flock of ducks to Narraganseyy Bay. Despite these problems, the roof garden flourished well into the 1930’s.

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December 30, 2013   Comments Off on 1920’s – The Providence-Biltmore Hotel had a Poultry Farm and Garden on the Roof

Changing Lives – Urban Farmers of Nairobi, Kenya

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Changing Lives – Urban Farmers of Nairobi is a 15 minute overview of Nairobi urban farmers.

Through support from Rooftops Canada, Mazingira Institute provides training to young urban farmers on efficient use of urban spaces, job creation, organic crops, livestock and health issues.

By Diana Lee-Smith
Food Tank
Dec 19, 2013
(Must see. Mike)
Diana Lee-Smith lives and works in Nairobi, Kenya, where she was one of the founders of Mazingira Institute, an independent research and development NGO and carried out the first survey of urban agriculture in Kenya in 1985.

Excerpt:

A decade ago the Nairobi Food Security, Agriculture and Livestock Forum – NEFSALF – began advocating for recognition of urban agriculture. At the time, urban farmers were frequently harassed and not provided with any support.

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December 30, 2013   Comments Off on Changing Lives – Urban Farmers of Nairobi, Kenya

European Urban Agriculture, by bicycle!

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3bike

12,000 kilomètres – 20 countries visited – 4 cities.

By Etienne, Simon & Yoann
Students in Montpellier SupAgro, international centre for higher education in agricultural sciences (Institut des Régions Chaudes).

Three students from Montpellier SupAgro school in France are realizing a research project on urban agriculture by making a European tour by bicycle which starts in early January, 2014 and ends in August. In their approach, urban agriculture includes intra-urban and peri-urban areas, including urban gardening. Their work will focus on innovations (technical, social, spatial and organizational) in this areas and the change in eating habits of people practicing urban agriculture.

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December 29, 2013   Comments Off on European Urban Agriculture, by bicycle!

Goats in London’s Southbank Centre

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Goats, specially brought in by Vauxhall City Farm for the day!

By Cadence Woodland
The Thrifty Homesteader
Dec 11, 2013

Excerpt:

London’s Southbank Centre is a cluster of buildings devoted to the arts, famous particularly for the music festivals and performances that go on in most of its five main buildings. Additionally there are shops, restaurants, cafes and open areas … including (I discovered!) a rooftop wildflower “meadow” atop the Queen Elizabeth Hall. The meadow is utterly open to the public. Just climb some stairs from the riverside walk and suddenly you’re in a secret garden in the very heart of Britain.

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December 29, 2013   Comments Off on Goats in London’s Southbank Centre

Sill to Sill – designing a city farm shop

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sill

The design seeks out and reuses discarded timber sash windows, relocating them playfully across the facade of the new shop.

By Benedetta Rogers, Lucy Paton, Julian Bond, Sigrid Bylander
Work finished in 2013
Client: Hackney City Farm

Excerpt:

The Sill to Sill design was the winning entry for an Architecture Competition held by Hackney City Farm, an environmental charity based in East London.

The competition brief called for the design of a new plant shop, fruit and vegetables, encouraging applicants to explore construction techniques using recycled materials, buying in to the Farm’s sustainable ethos and demonstrating the potential of urban waste as a building material. The team drew their inspiration from the architecture of the local neighbourhood, defined by streets of Victorian terrace houses with their imposing brick facades and generous sash windows. In recent years these homes have been bought up in a wave of gentrification and as new owners move, builders get to work, improvements are made and old materials are discarded.

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December 28, 2013   Comments Off on Sill to Sill – designing a city farm shop

Boston’s Higher Ground Rooftop Farm’s John Stoddard and Courtney Hennessey

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“We are only using a portion of our leased 58,000 square feet, so our goal is to grow into our unused space.”

Greenovate Boston
Dec 11, 2013

Excerpt:

After working for three years to get the farm off the ground, John and co-founder Courtney Hennessey enjoyed their first growing season in 2013. And the community enjoyed it, too– Higher Ground Farm not only satisfied the taste buds of their customers and volunteers, but also attracted the attention of Greg Watson, the MA Secretary of Agriculture, who paid the farm a visit himself. As Higher Ground is a great model for urban farming, and John and Courtney also participated in providing feedback into the Boston’s Urban Agriculture Rezoning Initiative (Article 89).

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December 28, 2013   Comments Off on Boston’s Higher Ground Rooftop Farm’s John Stoddard and Courtney Hennessey

Urban Agriculture in Casablanca, Morocco

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How can agriculture be integrated into the urban structure and the urban development process in Casablanca

The project is a research and demonstration project of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) under the research program “Research for the Sustainable Development of Megacities of Tomorrow – Energy- and Climate-Efficient Structures in Urban Growth Centres” of the Federal Republic of Germany.

Urban Agriculture in Casablanca, Morocco

1. Challenge
• Rapid urban growth is reducing and fragmenting agricultural land within the city region
• Conventional planning tends to neglect agriculture and open space as valuable resources and parts of the regional land use structure
• Informal development further contributes to the fragmentation of land us patterns and the reduction of open space
• Low awareness of the potential of urban agriculture for a productive green infra- structure and sustainable food supply

[Read more →]

December 27, 2013   Comments Off on Urban Agriculture in Casablanca, Morocco

Home Grown: A song about the freedom gained through growing your own

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By Keith “Fathom” Cross
Keith “Fathom” Cross: 100% Soul Vocalist; Full-Blooded Emcee; Aspiring Urban Farmer; Scholar; and, Brother to all that Exists.
Nov 2012

This is a song about the freedom gained through growing your own. For me it is a dream which I’ve barely begun. I don’t yet have the land or the skills to make it a reality. With your support, I will get there, and continue to motivate others to do the same.

Link to song here.

December 27, 2013   Comments Off on Home Grown: A song about the freedom gained through growing your own

SEED: The Untold Story – a documentary film in production

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From creators of Queen Of The Sun & Real Dirt On Farmer John.

Directors Taggart Siegel, Jon Betz
Collective Eye Films
Coming 2014

Excerpt:

SEED: The Untold Story, a feature-length documentary film, tells the harrowing and heartening story of humans’ 12,000-year relationship with seeds. As many irreplaceable seeds are nearing extinction, SEED unveils a David and Goliath battle for their future. The film follows an absorbing journey into “doomsday” seed vaults, the colorful dedication of seed savers, and the world of indigenous tribes, who strive to protect our sacred seed ancestry. SEED celebrates the mystery, power and essential nature of seeds. Entertaining and engaging, SEED will ignite the imagination of audiences, inspiring them to be part of a brave new movement dedicated to safeguarding our world’s sustainable future.

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December 26, 2013   Comments Off on SEED: The Untold Story – a documentary film in production

Map with potential roof surfaces for commercial ZFarming in Berlin online

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mapaerberlinPotential roof surfaces for commercial ZFarming in Berlin

Zero Acreage Farming – Urban Agriculture of the Future

Excerpted from the ZFarm News
Dec 2013 issue

A map is available on www.zfarm.de showing potential roof surfaces for commercial ZFarming in Berlin. The map was created on the basis of data taken from the Berlin Solar Atlas and the Environment Atlas.

In order to calculate the roof surface potential, flat roofs with an area of at least 500 square metres that would be suitable for solar utilisation were initially selected from data contained in the Berlin Solar Atlas. It was assumed that roof surfaces that were suitable for solar utilisation would also constitute potential space for ZFarming. In addition, various other criteria were defined that need to be taken into account when planning commercial rooftop farming projects: a roof inclination of no more than 8 degrees, building heights not exceeding 50 m, compatible area uses and types, and the homogeneity of the areas. No consideration was made of aspects concerning statics.

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December 26, 2013   Comments Off on Map with potential roof surfaces for commercial ZFarming in Berlin online

‘Kitchen Gardens’ – Background by The Library of Congress

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pucksmall‘The Quaint Old Kitchen Garden’.

Scope – General Introductions – Subject Headings – Basic Texts – Specialized Titles – Dissertations – Selected Dissertations – Abstracting and Indexing Services – Journals – Representative Journal Articles – Selected Materials – Selected Internet Resources

Science Reference Services
Science Tracer Bullets Online 07-2
The Library of Congress
September 25, 2013

Scope:

The kitchen garden, once a standard fixture of most American households, is gaining renewed attention as one component of the movement towards local, fresh and seasonal foods. Many people who take up kitchen gardening are concerned about the sustainability of a system in which most foods in a typical meal have traveled over 1,000 miles to get to their tables. Some kitchen gardeners are drawn by the variety of heirloom and hybrid plants available to growers, while others are attracted by freshness, flavor and nutritional value.

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December 25, 2013   Comments Off on ‘Kitchen Gardens’ – Background by The Library of Congress

Forget Golf Courses: Subdivisions Draw Residents With Farms

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Paige Witherington is the farmer at Serenbe Farms, a 30-acre certified organic and biodynamic farm adjacent to a housing development outside Atlanta. It’s one of more than 200 or so subdivisions with an agricultural twist nationwide. Photo by Serenbe.

Development-supported agriculture, a more intimate version of community-supported agriculture

by Luke Runyon
The Salt NPR
December 17, 2013

Excerpt:

When you picture a housing development in the suburbs, you might imagine golf courses, swimming pools, rows of identical houses.

But now, there’s a new model springing up across the country that taps into the local food movement: Farms — complete with livestock, vegetables and fruit trees — are serving as the latest suburban amenity.

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December 25, 2013   Comments Off on Forget Golf Courses: Subdivisions Draw Residents With Farms

Handbook For Home Gardening In Cambodia

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cambhome garden

The Complete Manual For Vegetable And Fruit Production

Editorial Team:
Aminuzzaman Talukder (Writer/Editor)
Dora Panagides (Editor)
Hou Kroeun (Editor)
Regina Moench-Pfanner, M.Sc., Ph.D. (Editor) Saskia de Pee, Ph.D. (Editor)
Martin W. Bloem, M.D., Ph.D. (Editor)
2003 Helen Keller Worldwide – 112 pages

Excerpt:

Foreword by Dora Panagides and Aminuzzaman Talukder

Homestead food production is a long-term, food-based strategy for combating micronutrient deficiencies, particularly vitamin A deficiency. A large proportion of people affected by micronutrient deficiencies can be found among the poor and marginalized populations of the developing world. The high cost of most micronutrient-rich foods available in consumer markets can limit their consumption in such populations. More than a third of Cambodians are living below the poverty level and many households face chronic food insecurity.

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December 24, 2013   Comments Off on Handbook For Home Gardening In Cambodia