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Bees are in decline but backyard hives won’t save them

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Hiroaki. Home at Ichinokura. Before 1936.

Some experts say the trend of backyard beekeeping could at best do little to save bees, and at worst leave certain species worse off

By Catherine McIntyre
MacLeans
September 23, 2017

Excerpt:

Beekeeping is a hot quarter of the urban agriculture trend sweeping the country’s gentrifying neighbourhoods. Compelled by warnings of declining pollinator numbers, city dwellers have been planting bee-friendly gardens, petitioning the government to ban harmful insecticides (specically neonicotinoids, the oft-cited bee nemesis) and—most ambitiously—hosting backyard honey bees.

Just about every urban centre in Canada has at least one Toronto Honeys equivalent: there’s the Halifax Honey Bee Society; the Regina and District Bee Club; and, in Vancouver, Hives for Humanity. One company, Alveoli, has installed and manages hives on more than 600 commercial and residential properties in cities across the country.

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October 1, 2017   Comments Off on Bees are in decline but backyard hives won’t save them

Boston Medical Center Rooftop Farm Concludes First Season

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Click image to see larger file. Rooftop farm at Boston Medical Center in Massachussetts.

Atop its power plant facility this past summer, the hospital introduced 7,000 square feet of space dedicated to growing fresh produce.

Facility Executive
September 25, 2017

Excerpt:

Boston Medical Center (BMC) has transformed the once barren roof on top of its power plant building into the largest rooftop farm in that city. This past summer, the 7,000 square feet of growing space flourished with fresh produce, including arugula, bok choy, radishes, Swiss chard, and kale. The rooftop space produced approximately 15,000 pounds of food this growing season, most of which went directly to the hospital’s patients.

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October 1, 2017   Comments Off on Boston Medical Center Rooftop Farm Concludes First Season

UK: Alan Titchmarsh’s tips on starting your allotment

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Allotments are becoming something of a must-have for urban families wanting to grow their own

Start a compost heap now, as an allotment will generate lots of green waste that’s best recycled into the soil.

By Alan Titchmarsh
Express
Sep 24, 2017

Excerpt:

Once the groundwork has been done it’s worth marking out beds, one for each of the main groups of plants. Put down paths of gravel, bark or paving slabs so it’s easy to walk around when wet, then start working out your cropping plan.

If you’ve never grown your own before, play safe for the first year or so and stick to reliable vegetables in small quantities spread throughout the year, or you’ll be swamped with stuff you can’t use – it’s usually lettuce – followed by nothing at all.

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October 1, 2017   Comments Off on UK: Alan Titchmarsh’s tips on starting your allotment