New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'
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How Does an Urban Farmer Work?

Greg Willerer grows a fascinating array of edible greens on little more than an acre of Detroit land.

By Jacob Brogan
June 25, 2017


Sometimes, Willerer sells his produce directly to customers at the Eastern Market, where our first guest of the season also got her start. But one of the advantages of urban farming in Detroit is that “you have a really nice array of restaurants and markets and a close distance between the restaurant and the farm.” Willerer’s farm also speaks to a complex give and take between local businesses: Just as he provides vegetables to local establishments, some of their food scraps and coffee grounds end up in his compost heap, helping to fertilize the next season’s crops.

“We’re all pretty symbiotic,” Willerer says of those relationships. “We often use the word ecosystem.”

In this episode, Willerer goes into that and more. He touches on the role that white flight has played in shaping contemporary Detroit, and he offers some tips to other would-be urban farmers. Then, in a Slate Plus extra, Willerer discusses some of the equipment that makes working on an urban farm feasible.

Read the complete article here.