New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'
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Hundreds of volunteers pick persimmons for food banks in Vacaville, California

Colin McGlibery of Pleasant Hill harvests persimmons at Charlotte’s Orchard in Vacaville. (Aaron Rosenblatt/Daily Republic)

Volunteers will harvest more than 50,000 pounds of fruit for donation between this Saturday and next. All fruit will be distributed among food banks, local food pantries, shelters and community dining halls.

By Susan Hiland
Daily Republic
Oct 22, 2017

Excerpt:

Charlotte Sturgeon lost her husband in 2006. He had big plans for the persimmon trees he planted but without him no one in the family knew his plans. That year, the round, orange fruit rotted and Sturgeon couldn’t stand to see that happen.

“We didn’t know what to do,” daughter-in-law Laurie Sturgeon said.

Her mother-in-law got in touch with The Urban Farmers, a nonprofit organization in Lafayette that harvests excess backyard fruit to donate to those in need.

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October 28, 2017   Comments Off on Hundreds of volunteers pick persimmons for food banks in Vacaville, California

UK: Bees do better in the city than the countryside because of their ‘varied diet’

Merry Little Tales for merry little hearts. 1856. Click image to see larger file.

Urban rooftop and suburban garden bees produced 27.5 lbs of honey per hive this year on average

By Katie Morley
Telegraph
Oct 23, 2017

Excerpt:

Honeybees in cities and suburban areas are producing more honey than those in rural areas, figures show, amid fears that the species is in grave decline.

Urban rooftop and suburban garden bees produced 27.5 lbs of honey per hive this year on average, according to a survey by the British Beekeepers Association. This compares to rural gardens, which produced an average of 22.5 lbs of honey per hive, around a fifth less.

Previous research has shown that honeybees in towns and cities enjoy a more diverse diet and find a richer diversity of pollen. This is because they visit a much wider range of flowers than bees foraging in the countryside.

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October 28, 2017   Comments Off on UK: Bees do better in the city than the countryside because of their ‘varied diet’

Canada: Hopes grow for urban farming as Calgary readies pilot project on vacant land

An unused and unoccupied piece of land located at 1920 Highfield Crescent S.E. is shown in Calgary.

“I hope in five to 10 years we’ll have 30 to 40 urban farms employing hundreds of people,” said Hughes, adding the city has a huge amount of unused land for such activity.

By Bill Kaufmann
Calgary Herald
Oct 22, 2017

Excerpt:

The city’s launch of an agriculture pilot project on plots of unused land is long overdue but could plant the seeds for a local food revolution, says a well-known Calgary urban farmer.

Operators who’ll farm two plots of land on a two-year lease — one in the northeast and the other in the southeast — are being sought by the city, with a tour of the sites scheduled for Oct. 27.

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October 28, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Hopes grow for urban farming as Calgary readies pilot project on vacant land

On this Seattle farm, seniors grow food and community

Turunesh Gura, 78, takes a break from working on at the Rainier Beach Urban Farm and Wetlands in Seattle. Kuow Photo/Megan Farmer.

This work is an opportunity to make connections in their adopted country and to practice English with native speakers.

By Patricia Murphy
KUOW
Oct 20, 2017

Excerpt:

“They don’t go out they don’t go to senior centers or community centers — because of the language barrier,” Michael Neguse said.

“So what we’re trying to do here is take them out of their houses, to come here to meet other people. To meet other ethnic groups and other languages and come and work together.”

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October 28, 2017   Comments Off on On this Seattle farm, seniors grow food and community