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Posts from — September 2016

Bill Mollison passed away on September 24, 2016 – Co-originator of ‘Permaculture’

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So, in answer to the complex question “what is permaculture?”, perhaps the most concise response is to say with others that “permaculture is a revolution disguised as organic gardening”.

By Samuel Alexander
The Conversation
Sept 28, 2016

Excerpt:

Mollison grew up in Stanley, Tasmania. After leaving school at 15 he moved through a range of occupations before joining the CSIRO in the Wildlife Survey Section in 1954, where he developed his research experience and understanding of ecological systems.

He was later appointed to the University of Tasmania, which is where, in 1974, he met the brilliant and radical young research student, David Holmgren

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September 30, 2016   Comments Off on Bill Mollison passed away on September 24, 2016 – Co-originator of ‘Permaculture’

Mumbai’s iKheti: Grow your own edible garden, at home

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Ms. Priyanka Amar presenting the Concept of iKheti to the President of India, Smt. Prathiba Singh Patil (12th President 2007-2012), at the WE School, Mumbai.

Priyanka Amar Shah, founder of iKheti, believes that urban farming has the potential to make cities greener. iKheti, a social enterprise started in 2012

Money Control
India’s Financial Portal
Sept, 2016

iKheti, which presently offers services in Mumbai and its outskirts and Pune, plans to spread to other cities of India. “We have already begun diversifying into developing edible landscaping. This involves using food plants as design features, to make it is visually appealing and also useful,” she explains.

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September 30, 2016   Comments Off on Mumbai’s iKheti: Grow your own edible garden, at home

Philadelphia: More than 100 farmers, gardeners, and fresh food advocates testify about the importance of urban agriculture

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Malaika Reid, a backyard chicken farmer from West Philly, with her daughter in May, 2016. Photo: Charles Mostoller

Decades-old community gardens facing eviction. Residents fined by law enforcement for raising chickens in their backyard. Neighborhoods where the only food for sale is junk at a corner poppy shop.

By Sam Newhouse
Metro
Sept 22, 2016

Excerpt:

City Councilman Al Taubenberger called the hearing under a resolution to explore supporting urban agriculture around Philadelphia, and said it remains to be seen if any new legislation will arise from the hearing. More hearings will be scheduled to explore the possibilities of vertical or controlled-environment farming.

“This was to help the hobbyist, the nonprofits, those who are bringing neighborhoods together,” he said. “It is also to continue the heritage of Philadelphia as being an epicenter of agriculture, which has long been forgotten.”

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September 30, 2016   Comments Off on Philadelphia: More than 100 farmers, gardeners, and fresh food advocates testify about the importance of urban agriculture

Venezuela’s Ministry of Urban Agriculture Faces Critics

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Residents attend a course about urban agriculture. Photographer: Manaure Quintero/Bloomberg

“Planters on Caracas balconies are not going to solve the growing problem of hunger in Venezuela,” said opposition lawmaker Maria Martinez, who sits on the National Assembly’s agricultural commission

By Andrew Rosati, Fabiola Zerpa
Bloomberg Markets
September 22, 2016

Excerpts:

Critics are quick to point to more than a decade’s worth of expropriations that left fields to fallow while a flood of cheap imports during Venezuela’s oil bonanza discouraged farming entirely. According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Land, almost 1.2 million hectares (3 million acres) were nationalized from 2010 to 2015 alone.

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September 29, 2016   Comments Off on Venezuela’s Ministry of Urban Agriculture Faces Critics

Victoria, BC Urban farmers pleased with city bylaw changes

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Jesse Brown of the Mason Street City Farm tends to tomatoes growing in the garden. — Image Credit: Pamela Roth.

Mayor Lisa Helps said she overlooked the impact the language could have, adding there shouldn’t be a constant dichotomy between farmers and developers, but instead they need to work together to encourage food production in the city.

By Kendra Wong
Victoria News
Sep 21, 2016

Excerpt:

Local urban farmers are rejoicing about the ability to grow and sell their own food, after Victoria city council recently passed a number of bylaw changes allowing them to do so.

“I’m happy to see it happen, I think it’s a totally necessary step and something that the community of Victoria was really asking for,” said Julia Ford, an urban farmer with City Harvest and Welland Legacy Orchard.

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September 29, 2016   Comments Off on Victoria, BC Urban farmers pleased with city bylaw changes

Saving Money Growing Homegrown Vegetables

Invest in a Garden System the Produces Weekly Harvests

By Stacey Murphy
Backyard Farms
Sept 27, 2016

This is my favorite video, because I love crunching numbers to see which vegetables are worth it for me to grow. Don’t worry if you don’t like numbers or budgets, I’ll walk you through mine. You definitely don’t want to be that person that grows one $250 tomato when you could have bought that same tomato at the farmers market for $5.

I once grew a head of endive for $5 which wasn’t so cost effective. But then I decided to let it flower, I saved the seeds, an d grew another 50 heads from those seeds. Those heads cost me $0.10 each to grow. Now we’re talking!

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September 28, 2016   Comments Off on Saving Money Growing Homegrown Vegetables

A Wall Farm For Your Office


This timelapse was filmed during 20 days in an office.

It’s nanotech growing material is engineered to supply plants the right amount of oxygen, water and nutrients at all times.

From their press release:

Palo Alto, Calif. – September 28, 2016 – Click & Grow’s Wall Farm line, a combination of a fully automated 57-plant, indoor smart garden, and a semi-automatic watering, 38-plant, indoor smart garden, is now available for purchase and is currently the most affordable on the market. The Wall Farm line will easily add fresh food to users’ diets and features Click & Grow’s proprietary NASA-inspired technology that takes the guesswork out of growing plants.

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September 28, 2016   Comments Off on A Wall Farm For Your Office

Bangkok’s Resort Rooftop Hydroponic Farm

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Anantara Riverside Bangkok Resort Rooftop Hydroponic Farm. Click on image for larger file.

Resort partnered with Bangsai Agricultural Centre to offer its guests a locally grown, certified organic, freshly harvested selection of Western and Asian herbs, vegetables and salads in the hotel’s 2,800 square-meter rooftop Hydroponic Farm.

Greenrooms.com
Designers/Manufacturers of Record:
Hydroponic Farming Design: Makavan Horsuwan and Chauphan Horsuwan, Bangsai Agricultural Centre
(Must see. Mike)

Excerpt:

Perched on the third floor overlooking the Chao Phraya River, the hydroponic rooftop farm partnership was sealed out of the passion both the Anantara Riverside and the Bangsai Agriculture Centre have in common, the commitment to providing fresh, healthy and non-toxic products to today’s demanding lifestyle as well as to educate and improve the local community’s competency and knowledge on the benefits of locally produced vegetables.

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September 28, 2016   Comments Off on Bangkok’s Resort Rooftop Hydroponic Farm

No Guff Vegetable Gardening

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Donna Balzer is a Calgary-based horticulturist with a broad background in horticulture and 30 years experience in everything from native perennials to cultural landscapes.

By Donna Balzer and Steven Biggs
No Guff Press
2012

In our book, you get the advice of TWO experts—and our points of view are not always the same. Look for “He Says” and “She Says” throughout the book.

You get the professional insights of horticulturists. We make sense of products and trends and give you thoughtful opinions.

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September 27, 2016   Comments Off on No Guff Vegetable Gardening

Michigan Senator Stabenow Announces the Urban Agriculture Act of 2016

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Senator Debbie Stabenow.

Most Comprehensive Urban Agriculture Bill to be Introduced in Congress Will Create New Economic Opportunities, Increase Access to Healthy Foods

Website of Debbie Stabenow
US Senator for Michigan
September 26, 2016
(Must Read. Mike)

The Urban Agriculture Act of 2016

reating New Economic Opportunities

Agriculture Cooperatives: Expands USDA authority to support farm cooperatives in urban areas, helping urban farmers who want to form and operate an agriculture cooperative get products to market. Reduces individual financial risk and burdensome paperwork by allowing USDA loans to be managed by agriculture cooperatives.

Rooftops, Vertical Farms & Indoor Production: Makes it easier for urban farms to apply for USDA farm programs and assists producers with information on operating rooftop and vertical farms. Supports access to land and production sites in urban communities through innovative conservation grants.

[Read more →]

September 27, 2016   Comments Off on Michigan Senator Stabenow Announces the Urban Agriculture Act of 2016

Seattle rooftop has 4000 crates growing for the food bank

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Her goals are to harvest 10,000 pounds of produce, build hoop gardens or small greenhouse gardens and install a beehive by next year at The University District Food Bank

By Brenda Kay Neth
City Living Seattle
9/19/2016

Excerpt:

Hanna Duffany, rooftop farmer and the food bank’s food recovery specialist, discussed the beginnings of the rooftop farm.

“Everything here has been planted by seed, except the tomatoes.” She said.

Greens, carrots, and fava beans were just a few of the rooftop crops peeking out from the 1,500 milk crates where they were planted.

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September 26, 2016   Comments Off on Seattle rooftop has 4000 crates growing for the food bank

Chicago’s Urban Beekeepers

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Pedro Ortiz, an urban beekeeper, extracting his bees from the hive “supers” (drawers) to check for honey.

Urban beekeeping and agriculture continue to grow, but a lack of native bees and wild pollinators pose challenges for urban agriculture and the bee population.

By Ariel Parrella-Aureli
The Columbia Chronicle
Sept 19, 2016

Excerpt:

While the number of beekeepers is growing, bee populations are declining, Thompson said. He said most people will only think of honeybees, but there are several other wild pollinators, including bumblebees and wild butterflies, that are vital to crops but are dwindling.

“Those native bees are really threatened much worse than honeybees because their culture is very localized,” he said. “Those are really essential to our world, and people don’t understand they’re even here.”

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September 26, 2016   Comments Off on Chicago’s Urban Beekeepers

In West Philadelphia, a community garden threatened by development

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John Lindsay (left) and James Seward hold fresh produce from the community garden on Wiota Street. They are concerned that developers are interested in bidding on the property. ( Margo Reed / Staff Photographer)

It’s not the only garden facing potential closure in the rapidly developing area, which has been identified as one in need of community-garden preservation by a nonprofit devoted to the cause.

By Tricia L. Nadolny
Philly.com
Sept 18, 2016

Excerpt:

Unlike a traditional community garden with neighbors claiming their own plots, Wiota Street is designed to grow as much produce as possible.

The sweet, green, and jalapeño peppers are in plot three; celery, rhubarbs, and beans are in plot four; flowers are in plot five; and turnips are in plot six. A peach tree anchors the property. Compost bins run along one wall, and a grape arbor stands near the Powelton Avenue fence. Herbs, marked with colorful signs painted by students from a local charter school, are in the far corner.

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September 25, 2016   Comments Off on In West Philadelphia, a community garden threatened by development

UK: Residents rise up against’ plans to build over London’s oldest allotments

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Northfields Allotments.

Northfields Allotments plotholders have been informed by Pathways in recent weeks of their intentions to build over at least 10% of the nearly 200-year-old site, with further plans to construct a mix of social and private housing.

By Luke Bartlett
They is Local London
Sept 16, 2016

Excerpt:

Francesca Bussey, Northfields resident and allotment owner, said: “We live in a social housing flat with no access to a garden of our own.

“In 18 months my daughter and I have transformed the plot from weeds and brambles to our own little patch of heaven.

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September 25, 2016   Comments Off on UK: Residents rise up against’ plans to build over London’s oldest allotments

Down on the Farm in Downtown Manhattan

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Students caring for a garden in a program run by Edible Schoolyard NYC, one of the nonprofits taking part in the Farm Fresh Festival for Kids.

“City Growers will be teaching kids about bees and pollination and honey,” Ms. Brose said, referring to one of the nonprofits taking part. “We’ll have beehives there.”

By Laurel Graeber
New York Times
Sept. 15, 2016

Excerpt:

“What we’re doing is transforming the seaport into an imaginative farm,” said Susanne Brose, who developed the event with Sandra Velez. Two years ago, Ms. Brose established FreshKids, a company that produces children’s snacks without genetically altered or artificial ingredients. Ms. Brose’s business, the Howard Hughes Corporation and the Generation Fresh Foundation, a nonprofit she helped found, will present the festival, which will offer opportunities to investigate livestock, planting, harvesting, cooking and composting.

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September 24, 2016   Comments Off on Down on the Farm in Downtown Manhattan