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Posts from — March 2017

Canada: General Mills ‘Bring Back the Bees’ campaign has created controversy

Manitoba experts explain how to support bee populations after questions raised about free seed campaign

By Brett Purdy
CBC News
Mar 26, 2017

Excerpt:

A cereal company’s offer of free wildflower seeds to help bees has felt the sting of controversy online — but local experts say there are are other ways to support healthy bee populations in Manitoba.

As part of its “Bring Back the Bees” campaign, General Mills has offered free seed packets — from P.E.I.’s Veseys Seeds — on millions of boxes of Honey Nut Cheerios, with the intention of raising awareness about the importance of bees as pollinators.

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March 27, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: General Mills ‘Bring Back the Bees’ campaign has created controversy

Toronto summit looked at urban agriculture and the role of community gardens in Toronto

See the book here.

The conference featured a variety of speakers including Kristin Reynolds, author of Beyond the Kale, and Toronto Councillor Mary Fragedakis, along with members of various community organizations like Black Creek Community Farm, Toronto Urban Growers and AccessPoint Alliance.

By Don Campbell
University of Toronto News
Mar 21, 2017

Excerpt:

U of T researcher Colleen Hammelman was hoping to explore the role of urban agriculture in the GTA and social justice at a one-day conference organized at U of T Scarborough this month. Her past work has looked at urban agriculture in cities like Medellín, Colombia, and Washington, D.C.

“Urban agriculture brings a lot of value to a city, especially in terms of sustainability, but a key element is how social justice also fits into the conversation,” says Hammelman.

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March 27, 2017   Comments Off on Toronto summit looked at urban agriculture and the role of community gardens in Toronto

Compost Stew

An A to Z Recipe for the Earth

By Mary McKenna Siddals
Ashley Wolff (Illustrator)
Dragonfly Books
Oct 14 2014

Excerpt:

“It has great rhyming and rhythm and a fun chorus for the kids to learn. We used it on the day we planted seeds for our garden boxes. If your children know the difference between garbage and recycling and you want to add compost to their understanding of waste, this book is where to start. Great for learning about waste, the environment, plants and community! My 20 month old asks for it by name.”

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March 27, 2017   Comments Off on Compost Stew

East Austin Urban Farm Tour Announces Lineup

Photo source: Hausbar Farm FB.

Guided Urban Farm Tours | Restaurant Tastings | Wine, Beer & Spirits

By Brandon Watson
The Austin Chronicle
Mar 20, 2017

Excerpt:

Spend a Sunday afternoon strolling among the crops, visiting the chickens, donkeys and rabbits on four urban farms mere blocks apart. In the fields, farmers will introduce their crops, share their experiences as farmers and answer gardening questions. It will be the perfect opportunity to get your tomato dilemmas solved!

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March 26, 2017   Comments Off on East Austin Urban Farm Tour Announces Lineup

Fortune: Kimbal Musk on ‘How Millennials Will Forever Change America’s Farmlands’

Kimbal Musk is the co-founder of The Kitchen, a family of companies that pursue an America where everyone has access to real food. He sits on the boards of Tesla, SpaceX and Chipotle Mexican Grill.

By Kimbal Musk
Fortune
Mar 21, 2017

Excerpt:

Tiny plots on rooftops and small backyards are popping up all across America, particularly in urban areas that have never been associated with food production. These micro-farms aren’t meant to earn a profit or feed vast numbers of people, but they reflect the Millennial generation’s desire to forge a direct connection with the food they consume.

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March 26, 2017   Comments Off on Fortune: Kimbal Musk on ‘How Millennials Will Forever Change America’s Farmlands’

Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation gives grants to 100 organizations


GRO1000 Miracle Gro Initiative in San Pedro, Nuevo Leon, Mexico.

The Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation today announced more than 100 non-profit organizations nationwide will receive 2017 GRO1000 Grassroots Grants.

By GlobeNewswire
March 20, 2017

Excerpt:

From children’s learning gardens to pollinator habitats, urban farms to healing gardens, GRO1000 has supported over 830 community-based projects nationwide since 2011. Projects have resulted in more than 10.7 million square feet of greenspace revitalized, more than 266,000 pounds of produce donated annually and more than 65,000 youth positively impacted through hands-on experiences with nature, according to data collected from previous GRO1000 Grassroots Grants recipients.

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March 26, 2017   Comments Off on Scotts Miracle-Gro Foundation gives grants to 100 organizations

Canada’s Prime Minister Trudeau Visits Rooftop Lufa Farm

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Visiting Lufa Farms Anjou.

The new 63,000 square foot rooftop greenhouse is a milestone in polyculture efficiency and produces over 40 varieties of urban-grown greens and vegetables, all year round.

Press Release
CNW Telbec/
MONTREAL, March 24, 2017

Urban agriculture pioneer Lufa Farms has just finished a third highly automated greenhouse in the Montreal borough of Anjou. The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau was there to see it in full production.

The new 63,000 square foot rooftop greenhouse is a milestone in polyculture efficiency and produces over 40 varieties of urban-grown greens and vegetables, all year round. Lufa Farms’ six years of rapid growth and its successes in rooftop greenhouse design, cooperation with local sustainability-focused farmers, and appeal to thousands of Montreal consumers, make it one of the most successful large-scale urban agriculture models in the world, demonstrating how to sustainably feed entire cities.

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March 25, 2017   Comments Off on Canada’s Prime Minister Trudeau Visits Rooftop Lufa Farm

The Learning Garden opens at Ishihara Park in Santa Monica

The park is named after George Ishihara, a Japanese-American, whose family was interned in the U.S concentration camps during World War II.

By Talia Tinari
Santa Monica Daily Press
March 18, 2017

The Learning Garden is a communal garden and differs from the other community garden sites in that it there are no individual plots. Instead it will host seminars and workshops for children and adults alike. There will be communal planting and harvest opportunities and many chances to help cultivate the gardens in between planting and harvesting.

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March 25, 2017   Comments Off on The Learning Garden opens at Ishihara Park in Santa Monica

Winnipeg: Fertile ground found at Discover Agriculture in the City


Simran Mannan, her husband Ravi Mattu and their two boys Harnidh Mattu 6yrs, and Jaiveer Mattu 4yrs (right) check out the veggie table. Ruth Bonneville / Winnipeg Free Press.

The parents are originally from a farming community and are passionate about gardening now that they live in Winnipeg.

By Jane Gerster
Winnipeg Free Press

Excerpt:

In her small backyard, Simran Mannan grows an incredible assortment of edible goodies. She has tomatoes and squash, peppers and broccoli, okra and eggplants. Mannan even grows carilla, a bitter Indian melon. But often, she said with a laugh, by the time it flowers in Winnipeg its already late September and “so cold.”

Mannan and her husband Ravi Mettu are from Punjab, India.

“We both are farmers back home,” she said, “so, of course, it’s inside our brain that we want to do it here.”

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March 25, 2017   Comments Off on Winnipeg: Fertile ground found at Discover Agriculture in the City

South Africa: Johannesburg rooftop gardens bringing agriculture to heart of city living

“The city has to find a way of making urban agriculture work in each and every space in the city. Since the inner city is filled with buildings, rooftop gardens is one of the ways we are trying to green the city,” Motsusi says.

By: Schalk Burger
Engineering News
Mar 17, 2017

Excerpt:

Officials of the City of Johannesburg (CoJ) Food Resilience Unit and the Johannesburg Development Agency are, therefore, working to help establish rooftop vegetable gardens to ensure food security for vulnerable people in the inner city and promote entrepreneurship.

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March 24, 2017   Comments Off on South Africa: Johannesburg rooftop gardens bringing agriculture to heart of city living

Progress threatens Istanbul’s historic gardens

The Yedikule gardens provide a livelihood for more than 200 people in Istanbul. TRF/Stephen Starr

“Ten days ago they came and cut down all the trees almost to the roots,” he says. “I don’t know why they did that; maybe because they want a give better view for tourists to take photos of the walls. Who knows?”

By Stephen Starr
Reuters
Mar 16, 2017

Excerpt:

Recep Eraslan, 64, has worked a tiny sliver of land on Istanbul’s historic Sultanahmet peninsula for more than three decades.

He grows spring onions, arugula and cabbage on a 1.25-acre (0.5 hectare) plot along the city’s ancient Byzantine-era walls that are part of one of the oldest urban gardens, or bostans in Turkish, in the world.

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March 24, 2017   Comments Off on Progress threatens Istanbul’s historic gardens

Atlanta Urban Agriculture Director Brings Fresh Produce To Those In Need


Mario Cambardella, paying a visit to Truly Living Well’s Collegetown Garden, is Atlanta’s first urban agriculture director. His goal is to help make fresh produce available to urban neighborhoods. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM

One goal is to transform Atlanta’s urban food deserts by bringing local, healthy food within a half-mile of 75 percent of all residents by 2020.

By Andrew Alexander
The Atlantic Journal Constitution
Mar 16, 2017

Excerpt:

Cambardella was hired by the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability in 2015 to help guide projects like the Collegetown Garden to success. In the new position, Cambardella is responsible for a wide range of activities related to urban agriculture in the city, including agricultural policy development. He cultivates partnerships with local non-profits like Truly Living Well and also assists individuals and organizations in navigating the often byzantine process of permitting and zoning related to starting their urban agriculture projects.

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March 23, 2017   Comments Off on Atlanta Urban Agriculture Director Brings Fresh Produce To Those In Need

Calgary urban agriculture activist Paul Hughes to run for mayor in 2017

In 2012 Paul Hughes was president of the Calgary Liberated Urban Chicken Klub (CLUCK).

Hughes said he believes issues around compassion and poverty are being ignored in Calgary.

By Annalise Klingbeil
Calgary Sun
Mar 14, 2016

Excerpt:

Paul Hughes, a food activist and longtime urban agriculture crusader, has thrown his hat into the 2017 mayoral race.

Hughes is well-known for a 2012 court battle over the right to keep backyard chickens and as the founder of Canada’s largest urban agriculture farm — a 4.5-hectare pocket of land near Canada Olympic Park know as Grow Calgary that has produced food for people in need for nearly four years.

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March 23, 2017   Comments Off on Calgary urban agriculture activist Paul Hughes to run for mayor in 2017

Eighteen Delaware sites awarded grants for urban agriculture and community gardens

The grants awarded this year totalled $27,671

By Stacey Hofmann
Delaware Government
Mar 15, 2017

Dover — Eighteen Delaware urban agriculture and community garden projects are receiving support through a second round of funding designed to strengthen communities and improve nutrition.

The partnerships that have developed at the local and state around urban agriculture and community gardening have really helped to transform Delaware communities. The grants awarded this year totaled $27,671.74, with $17,671.74 from Delaware Department of Agriculture. New Castle Conservation District pledged the additional $10,000 match for New Castle County sites.

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March 23, 2017   Comments Off on Eighteen Delaware sites awarded grants for urban agriculture and community gardens

Indicators for Urban Agriculture in Toronto – A Scoping Analysis

Strong leadership and support will aid the growth of urban agriculture across Toronto.

Authors: Rhonda Teitel-Payne, James Kuhns and Joe Nasr
Toronto Urban Growers
Dec 2016

Executive Summary

When Toronto Public Health (TPH) identified a considerable gap in Toronto- specific data on the impact of urban agriculture (UA), Toronto Urban Growers (TUG) was commissioned to engage Toronto-based practitioners and key informants on identifying the most relevant and measurable indicators of the health, social, economic, and ecological benefits of urban agriculture. The overall objective of the work was to develop indicators that a wide range of stakeholders could use to make the case for making land, resources and enabling policies available for urban agriculture.

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March 22, 2017   Comments Off on Indicators for Urban Agriculture in Toronto – A Scoping Analysis