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In Urban Edmunston, Maryland, Eco City Farms Grows Enough Produce to Feed 250 People Each Year

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Video by Deborah Levenson.

The federal government has declared Prince Georges County, Md. a “food desert” because many residents have trouble getting to grocery stores that sell fresh fruits and vegetables.

Excerpt from ECO City Farm’s website:

ECO City Farms has converted previously vacant land into a highly productive farming enterprise that produces healthy vegetables, fruit, herbs, eggs and honey. Our produce is Certified Naturally Grown by fellow farmers who establishes an international grassroots alternative to the USDA Certified Organic Program. We employ environmentally sound, chemical-free, permaculture farming methods and support others to do the same.

Farmer Training:

We provide in-depth, hands-on technical and practical training in urban agriculture through apprenticeships and internships and courses. In conjunction with Prince George’s Community College and other partners, we offer a wide range of Continuing Education Credit courses and a certificate in Commercial Urban Farming. Students range from beginners to seasoned experts.

Composting and Rebuilding Soil:

We nurture the ecosystem by producing our own soil additives through extensive composting of local food waste and vermicomposting with millions of worms. We teach beginning, advanced and master composting through the Neighborhood Soil Rebuilders program.

Microgreens

With funding from a Maryland Department of Agriculture Specialty Crop Block Grant, ECO City Farms set out to develop a microgreens growing system that would work in small settings, such as urban farms or for farmers looking to create additional crops and sources of revenue to supplement their other growing operations. Over the course of two years, we researched microgreen operations around the country, tested seeds and growing media, and experimented with growing structures. With some ideas of what worked for the setup, we built out a microgreens growing area in a large hoophouse which could be expanded as market and customers grow. Learn more about ECO’s best practices from our Guidelines for Growing Microgreens.

More here.