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Category — Canada

Canada: Something fishy about downtown Toronto’s Waterwheel Farms

Solutions to growing local produce may be as close as Queen Street West

By Katherine Forte
Toronto Obeserver
December 4th, 2017

Excerpt:

Wheeler began a small aquaponics farm in his apartment five years ago, when he got tired of his store-bought greens going rotten too quickly. All of his education on aquaponics farming came from research and translating knowledge gained from growing up on his family’s open-field farm in Northern Ontario. He works as a financial analyst for a renewable energy provider. He jokingly refers to himself as “a renewable energy crusader by day and an urban farmer revolutionist by night.”

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December 13, 2017   No Comments

Canada: Made-in-Toronto devices aim to make indoor gardening simple

Modgarden founder Aamar Khwaja. Photo by Samuel Engelking.

Consumer demand for cannabis-centric systems is also high

By Rae Ann Fera
Now
November 24, 2017

Excerpt:

Of course, when people think of growing herbs indoors, a different variety comes to mind.

With federal legislation legalizing marijuana, including growing at home, coming in July 2018, that other herb is on the radars of Modgarden and HiGarden.

HiGarden has already designed a four-pot prototype of the VIGA in anticipation of the four-plant growing limit the law will allow, but beyond that, no modifications have been made, largely because weed is still illegal.

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November 30, 2017   No Comments

Canada: Agriculture and Food Security Plan from Saanich, BC

Click image to see larger file.

Theme 7: Expand Opportunities for Urban Agriculture

DRAFT Agriculture and Food Security Plan
Prepared by the District of Saanich Planning Department & Upland Agriculture Consulting
November, 2017
(Must see. Mike)

Excerpt:

The purpose of the Agriculture and Food Security Plan (AFSP) is to provide the District with a coordinated approach for supporting agriculture and improving food security in Saanich over the next 10 to 15 years. It provides a roadmap for achieving Sustainable Saanich’s Official Community Plan (OCP) priorities and outlines a comprehensive approach to enhance the viability and long term sustainability of Saanich agriculture and food security.

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November 28, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Agriculture and Food Security Plan from Saanich, BC

Canada: Three Urban CSA’s in Greater Vancouver

Riverside Farm CSA Box.

Riverside Farm, PLOTS, Hasting Creek Farm

Excerpts from their websites:

Riverside Farm

We offer a box size suitable for singles, couples, and small families!
We are committed to also growing organic Asian greens and vegetables, and are excited to offer this to our members.
We will be offering “add-ons” throughout the season – additional food items which we will source from other local food producers. Some of the add-ons may include: honey, fresh herbs, mushrooms, jams, and canned fruits and vegetables.
The “One Size Fits All” Box
Ideal for a single person, couple or small family.

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November 26, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Three Urban CSA’s in Greater Vancouver

Canada: Vancouver’s ‘Inner City Farms’ Partners with Home Owners and Local Businesses to Convert Front and Back Yards

We harvested some fine leaf lettuce, amongst other things. In this pic, one of our Urban Farmers, Suho, is flanked by the the Team Monday crew: Mike, Hailey and Vera.

Growing: Creole Garlic, Rojo De Castro; Rocambole Garlic, Russian Red; Purple Stripe Garlic, Shvelisi; Music Garlic (Musical)

From their websites.

Excerpt:

Inner City Farms(ICF) is a small urban farm in Vancouver made up of even smaller parts. Vancouver is built on unceded Coast Salish territory and our farms are built on private property within our city’s limits. None of the land farmed by ICF is owned by ICF. All of the space we have access to is provided to us my members of the community who believe in our project and see the our gardens as a positive contribution to the neighbourhood. As a result we never talk about “our land” we instead understand our farm as “our spaces”.

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November 23, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Vancouver’s ‘Inner City Farms’ Partners with Home Owners and Local Businesses to Convert Front and Back Yards

Canada: Vancouver’s ‘City Beet Farm’ Grows in Front and Back Yards

This summer we are growing over 70 types of veggies and cut flowers for our 22 week CSA program that runs from end of May to mid-October.

Maddy & Elana, City Beet Farm
From Young Agrarians
Posted by Kristen Nammour
2017

Excerpt:

The greatest business challenge that we face as a young farmer is managing cash flow so that we can pay-off the cost of the business and keep ourselves afloat in our first season. Our business goals are to pay off the cost of the business; deliver the best possible veggies to a sold-out CSA program; and to explore new revenue streams, including cut-flowers and a food-truck collaboration. We are feeling super grateful and on track to be able to achieve that through the help of our mentors and the YA network.

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November 22, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Vancouver’s ‘City Beet Farm’ Grows in Front and Back Yards

Canada: Rapper tells the story of Frisch Farms Vancouver

Gabriel Pliska raps about CSA urban farming as he walks through the streets of Vancouver.

FRISCH is the German word for FRESH. Frisch sounds fresher. Kinda crisp and crunchy like a fresh snap pea.

By Gabriel Pliska
Frisch Farms
2017

Excerpt:

It was in the Spring of 2012 when I moved back to Canada from Germany where I was teaching English and semi-retired…

Then once in Vancouver, I started growing vegetables in some raised garden beds with new roommates in Kitsilano and I remembered how much fun it was to garden with my mother while growing up in Ottawa as a child. I knew gardening was my passion!

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November 20, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Rapper tells the story of Frisch Farms Vancouver

Canada: True Grit Farm Produces Micro and Baby Greens in Langely, BC

The CSA program will run for 24 weeks (May to October). Two sizes will be offered; a full share, and a half share.

By Ashlee Brillert
True Grit Farm
Nov. 2017

Excerpts from Their Facebook Page:

Not much makes us happier than a nice full greenhouse! We’ve started to use coconut coir as seed cover instead of our soil mix to top some of our more delicate micros for the winter months. We find it helps us to avoid mould issues as it keeps some moisture in, but also has aeration properties. During the summer months our micros need misting on the hour as they dry out so quickly. During the winter we have the opposite problem where you can easily end up watering too much (or at the wrong time) and having micros sit wet overnight. Putting micros to bed wet we find can quickly give you mould issues! Coconut coir helps us with this, and keeps our watering down to twice per day in winter

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November 19, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: True Grit Farm Produces Micro and Baby Greens in Langely, BC

Canada: Forget backyard chickens, council shifts focus to food security in London, Ontario

“A small victory for chickens” says animal welfare group after council rejects proposal to allow backyard laying hens #ldnont

About a dozen animal welfare supporters poured into the city’s gallery to voice their disapproval

CBC News
Nov 15, 2017

Excerpt:

Londoners will have to hold off on raising backyard laying hens – and current coop owners will have to continue flying under the radar.

Animal Liberation Alliance London, From Their Facebook page:
“Small victory for chickens tonight as city council voted to remove back yard chickens from the cities agricultural plan. Small victory because they did it for all the wrong reasons. We are still not recognizing chickens as having a right to not be exploited by humans. Most of the councillors voted against it because they saw chickens in the city as an unnecessary burden or a nuisance.

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November 16, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Forget backyard chickens, council shifts focus to food security in London, Ontario

Canada: Victoria school garden teaching students value of outdoor activity

Westshore Centre for Learning student Josh Hill (right) and a member of the Western Garden Club help themselves to a lunch of pumpkin and apple soup, mixed greens, croutons and pumpkin pie at the school’s campus in Colwood Thursday. The students grew and harvested everything in the meal in the community garden. (Kendra Wong/News Gazette staff)

The garden has been happening in various capacities on the property for the last 12 years, however, this year the school was able to add a greenhouse, thanks to funding from the Horner Foundation

By Kendra Wong
Victoria News
Nov. 6, 2017

Excerpt:

As part of the school’s sustainable resources class, which runs from February to June and gives students a Grade 11 science credit, students learn how to plant and nurture seedlings, transplant, weed out and harvest in the roughly, 4,000-square foot garden on Sooke Road. Students had their own grow boxes and planted a variety of tomatoes, lettuces, cabbages, raspberries, carrots, beets, herbs, apples, squash and onions.

While other schools have gardens, Jennifer Freeman of Zero Mile Solutions who helps support the development of the garden, said this one is unique in that gardening is integrated into the curriculum.

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November 13, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Victoria school garden teaching students value of outdoor activity

Canada: Kale Grown in Indoor Farm

Modular Farms president Aaron Spiro grows 68 kilograms of kale a week inside his mobile farm with infra red lights. (Vince Talotta / Toronto Star)

Modular Farms vertical hydroponics system will soon produce up to 68 kilograms of kale a week.

By Ainslie Cruickshank
Toronto Star
Nov. 6, 2017

Excerpt:

“They can start guaranteeing their customers that any kale on the menu was not only grown locally but was literally harvested less than half an hour before people are eating it, which is pretty amazing,” said Aaron Spiro, the president of Modular Farms.

Over the last four years the Brampton-based company has developed an indoor farming system housed in 40-foot containers made of insulated composite steel panels that they say can grow food in any climate.

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November 13, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Kale Grown in Indoor Farm

Canada: Government of the Northwest Territories signed an agreement to develop backyard agriculture by-laws. “Not enough” says expert.

Jackie Milne, President of Hay River’s Northern Farm Training Institute.

“We have such a need for food. To nurture, to build up and grow the food side. It’s great if these by-laws are going to help the average person grow food; but, let’s focus on the real thing here,” she sternly presses. “Agriculture is a sector. It’s like mining. It’s a key area that can contribute in a lasting way to our economy in the North. It’s so neglected, it’s pathetic. It’s shameful.”

By Cameron Wilkinson
My Yellowknife
Nov. 2, 2017

Excerpt:

Jackie Milne, President of Hay River’s Northern Farming Institute, says the by-laws aren’t particularly new, nor are they any help.

“This work is redundant,” Milne says with a very flat tone. “A few years ago, I actually helped Hay River Agriculture Plan grant from the Government to do an agriculture strategy. It was done by a professional agriculture organization from Alberta. It systematically addressed all of the different types of by-laws that can exist in a community that can be reviewed or altered. It’s publicly available.

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November 9, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Government of the Northwest Territories signed an agreement to develop backyard agriculture by-laws. “Not enough” says expert.

Canada: City councillor wants to make commercial farming legal for Winnipeg homeowners

Allard compares the idea to other sharing services like Uber and AirBNB. The councillor says urban agriculture is an efficient use of land, is economical and could cut down on greenhouse gases from transporting food.

By Jeff Keele
CTC News
Nov 3, 2017

Excerpt:

A city councillor wants Winnipeg homeowners to be able to farm in their yards.

Currently city rules do not allow homeowners to grow fruits and veggies in their yards for commercial purposes.

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November 9, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: City councillor wants to make commercial farming legal for Winnipeg homeowners

Canada: Kitchener Community gardens will flourish under changes designed to empower residents to get growing

Left to right: Wendy Janzen, Trent Bauman, Juanita Metzger, Kai Bender, Levi Bender and Chip Bender stand with some of the produce from the community garden at Uniroyal Goodrich Park in Kitchener. – David Bebee,Record staff file photo

The City of Kitchener is turning over a new leaf on its community garden program with changes designed to help residents take the lead in starting new gardens, or maintain and upkeep existing gardens in their neighbourhoods.

Excerpt:

Wire Service
10/31/2017

City council recommended the approval of several changes to the city’s existing program in response to feedback received during the Love My Hood consultation. Designed to make it easier for residents to become involved in community gardening, the changes include providing insurance coverage for individual gardeners, increased funding for new gardens and providing funding to enhance existing gardens. An easy-steps guide and single staff contact will round out new supports to get more people engaged in community gardening.

“We heard residents say the demand for community gardens is growing,” says Josh Joseph, supervisor, neighbourhood development office, City of Kitchener. “There are 35 community gardens in Kitchener, including 15 on city-owned land, plus gardens on private property and we hope to increase this number each year.”

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November 6, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Kitchener Community gardens will flourish under changes designed to empower residents to get growing

Canada: How to feed a hungry city

Brandon Hebor, co-founder of Ripple Farms Inc., inspects the growing lights of an aquaponic lab. Ripple currently sells its produce to high-end chefs.

Toronto has become a leader in urban agriculture, but there’s worry public awareness is lagging as new projects struggle to take root

By Charlie Friedmann
Globe And Mail
Nov 3, 2017

Excerpt:

“Torontonians have long grown in their backyards and continue to do so, but it’s mostly been under the radar,” notes Joe Nasr of the Centre for Studies in Food Security at Ryerson University and a co-ordinator of Toronto Urban Growers (TUG). “What’s new is this attention to the fact it exists and that it has a place in the city, and that the city can help it prosper.”

TUG has brought together a diverse group of civilian stakeholders since 2009, with the goal of increasing the availability of healthy and sustainable food grown, processed and sold in Toronto. Through networking meetings, public forums and lobbying, the group has done just that, and – working with the Toronto Food Policy Council (TFPC) – was largely behind efforts to bring Toronto’s Urban Agriculture Day to fruition.

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November 5, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: How to feed a hungry city