New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'
Random header image... Refresh for more!

“Farmer John” Matthesen and California’s Urban Agriculture Movement

famrejAt Rodgers Ranch, Marian Woodard and John Matthesen, directors of the urban farm and teaching garden, work with volunteers to prepare soil for planting herbs and flowers. During the activity, they came across and inspected a California boa in the spiral herb garden. (Contra Costa Times)

I teach culinary students that they too can participate in the Silicon Valley startup environment

By Michael Bernick
Former California Employment Development Department Director & Milken Institute Fellow
Fox and Hounds
August 4th, 2015

Excerpt:

Matthesen is a leader in this urban ag movement in the East Bay. He and his wife, Marian Woodard helped found the Rodgers Ranch Urban Farm in 2012, which is a working farm on 2 acres in suburban Pleasant Hill.

Matthesen, known by his students as “Farmer John”, graduated from the University of Colorado, and spent 12 years in the hospitality field, in a range of jobs in hotels and restaurants. In 1987 he shifted fields to take a job with Sybase, the rapidly growing software firm then in Emeryville. For the next nearly 25 years he was active in software start-ups, including for some years as a member of a venture capital firm in San Francisco. Woodard is a graduate of UC Davis / Master Gardener program.

[Read more →]

August 12, 2015   Comments Off on “Farmer John” Matthesen and California’s Urban Agriculture Movement

Rooftop Garden Is a Hit at Boston’s Fenway Park

(Must see video. After the ad. Mike)

Just above Yawkey Way is a garden that is the envy of everyone who sees it: thousands of square feet of squash, beans, tomatoes, herbs and eggplant.

By Harry Smith
NBC News
Aug 3, 2015

Excerpt:

The fresh vegetables and herbs end up in the kitchen of the Red Sox’s high-end restaurants.

Senior Executive Chef Ron Abell says the food is fresh — and he’s spoiled.

“It’s the best produce around,” he said. He whips up salads, pesto’s, vegetable side dishes and scallion pancakes with the garden’s wares.

[Read more →]

August 12, 2015   Comments Off on Rooftop Garden Is a Hit at Boston’s Fenway Park

How dog parks are reducing the impact of pet waste

idream

Dog poo compost not tested for pathogens should never be used on edible crops.

By Rose Seeman
Alternatives Journal
Aug 11 2015

Excerpt:

Volunteers who maintained the dog run in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce Park in Montreal successfully composted pet waste from 2005 to 2010. They installed one-metre-cubed plastic bins and encouraged owners to put their dogs’ doo in the bins and cover it with donated sawdust. The volunteers then turned the compost when visiting with their pets. Full bins were covered until the compost was finished. Then it was bagged and left as free garden fertilizer. According to Jim Fares, president of the Notre-Dame-de-Grâce Dog Run Association at the time, the process was virtually odourless. The compost quickly became popular and, he says, produced “huge flowers.” (When volunteers dwindled after five years, the city took over park maintenance and discontinued composting.)

[Read more →]

August 12, 2015   Comments Off on How dog parks are reducing the impact of pet waste

Visit with a seasoned beekeeper in Victoria, BC

beeky

Entering the Secret Life of the Honey Bee

By Larraine Roulston
Green Mom
August 11, 2015

Excerpt:

This summer I had a great opportunity to shadow my brother-in-law Bob while he tended his backyard bee hives. As a Examining a honeycomb mainseasoned beekeeper and member of the Capital Region Beekeepers’ Association in Victoria, BC, Bob has 11 hives, each containing rows of hanging combs, all buzzing with activity. Donning the bulky white suit, mask, hat, gloves and boots, I was then ready to view their amazing contribution to our ability to grow food.

[Read more →]

August 12, 2015   Comments Off on Visit with a seasoned beekeeper in Victoria, BC