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Category — Canada

Garden book from Manitoulin Island, Northern Ontario

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burted

82-year-old Ed Burt shares his secrets

By Michael Erskine
The Manitoulin Express
April 15, 2016

Excerpt:

he first learned the art and science of gardening at the foot of his grandfather 82 years ago at the age of five— and a lot of the knowledge he has acquired over the years is contained in his new book, ‘My Journey in the Garden: Ed Burt’s Way of Growing Food’.

“When my grandparents came to Manitoulin they experienced some especially rough winters,” he said. “We didn’t have the transportation we have now. The railroad was 40-50 miles away and if you didn’t have a horse, it was a long way away.” Adding to the distance, the roads in those days were not ploughed in the winter and few people had a car or truck to travel the roads even if the snow wasn’t an obstacle. Growing and storing food wasn’t a hobby or pastime in those early days, it was a survival skill. “I grew up in that environment,” said Mr. Burt.

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April 30, 2016   No Comments

Toronto: Bell Manor Community Garden users talk about the benefits of growing in a ‘magical place’

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Welcome to Bell Manor Community Garden.

Stonegate Community Health Centre releases video in support of their food efforts

Etobicoke Guardian
Apr 23, 2016

Excerpt:

“Many of our residents live on fixed or low incomes. Providing the opportunity to grow their own fresh, healthy food is often a necessity, not a luxury,” Julia Graham, Stonegate CHC’s community food program co-ordinator, said in a statement.

In recent years, the garden has come to serve an even greater need, as the nearby Valu-Mart, which provided the only walkable access to fresh food in the community, was closed two years ago to make way for condominiums.

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April 27, 2016   No Comments

Sewing the seeds for a new community garden at King Edward Park in Peterborough, Ontario

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Co-ordinators Chantilly, left, and Natalie Stephenson toss earth at the future site of the King Edward Community Garden next to George St. on Tuesday April 19, 2016 at King Edward Park in Peterborough, Ont. Clifford Skarstedt/Peterborough Examiner/Postmedia Network

By Joelle Kovach
Peterborough Examiner
April 20, 2016

Excerpt:

The new garden was approved Tuesday night by the city’s board of parks and recreation.

The garden will be north of the splash pad (near the park’s border with the neighbouring property, Duffus Funeral Home).

The idea is to create a large vegetable garden with 21 plots. Each plot will be large enough to grow produce to feed a family of four.

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April 24, 2016   No Comments

Real estate speculation threatens future of Metro Vancouver farmland

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KPU studies agriculture real estate speculation as it threatens the future of an economically viable bioregion in Richmond and Southwest B.C.

By Graeme Wood
Richmond News
April 22, 2016

Excerpt:

Presently, about one-third of farmed land in Metro Vancouver is leased.

Furthermore, Mullinix estimates some 44,000 acres of farmable land is not in production in Metro Vancouver.

Adding to the pressures is the increase in estate homes being built on ALR land. Such mansions are numerous in Richmond and set a new price benchmark based on its value as a luxury residential property instead of a working farm, according to the report.

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April 23, 2016   No Comments

Rising food prices in Calgary create fertile environment for urban permaculture food garden

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percaJohn Berlie’s yard has been converted to a food producing permaculture garden. Calgary Herald.

“Even without a yard, you can still have window boxes for herbs that would otherwise be expensive to buy.”

By Sharon Crowther
Calgary Herald
Apr 16, 2016

Excerpt:

Jon and his wife Jamie bought their Coventry Hills home in 2013 and in less than three years transformed their “weed infested” front and backyard, totalling less than 2,000 square feet, into a garden producing more than a hundred varieties of fruit, vegetables and herbs.

“The front yard is a forrest garden, the idea is that everything growing there should be edible or have medicinal value: currants, apples, pears, rhubarb, echinacea. We also put in a fruit hedge by the pavement. There’s a daycare three houses along from us and the kids love to steal the raspberries in summer: that’s why it’s there, we want kids to see where fruit comes from.

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April 20, 2016   Comments Off on Rising food prices in Calgary create fertile environment for urban permaculture food garden

Canada: Ottawa’s urban farmers cross the fowl line, as hobby comes home to roost

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outlKeeping backyard chickens is against the law in Canada’s capital city. Photo by Bruce Deachman.

McGregor thinks the city should amend By-law 2003-77 to allow backyard hens, joining Vancouver, Victoria, Kingston, Red Deer, Montreal, Saint John, Moncton, Fredericton, Cornerbrook, Brampton, Guelph and numerous other Canadian municipalities that permit backyard chickens.

By Bruce Deachman
Ottawa Citizen
Apr 16, 2016

Excerpt:

She first got the idea more than a decade ago when she and her husband toured an off-the-grid house where the owners kept chickens. “They were all what I’d call funky chickens — heritage breeds — and after that I decided I wanted chickens.”

They made the leap four years ago, when they attended a bird auction and paid about $20 each for two hens: a Barred Rock and a Polish hen — Polly — the latter most notable for its showy crest of feathers.

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April 20, 2016   Comments Off on Canada: Ottawa’s urban farmers cross the fowl line, as hobby comes home to roost

Tomatoes and Google connect a Canadian urban farmer to new Syrian neighbour

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‘This is straight out of Star Trek,’ says urban farmer Curtis Stone about translated encounter

“It’s amazing how urban gardening and urban agriculture really connects people, because food crosses all cultural and language barriers.”

By Lisa Johnson
CBC News
Apr 12, 2016

Excerpt:

Then the man opened Google Translate, an app that provides two-way speech translation.

“I am a tomato farmer from Syria,” the man said, through his phone.

“I was stoked and I said, ‘oh, you like tomatoes?'” said Stone, who invited his new neighbour into his greenhouse.

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April 16, 2016   Comments Off on Tomatoes and Google connect a Canadian urban farmer to new Syrian neighbour

Empty soccer field in Thunder Bay, Ontario, being turned into urban agricultural site

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The City, along with Roots to Harvest, unveiled a new program and site plan lastnight that will transform the former soccer fields adjacent to Volunteer Pool into a productive urban agriculture site.

“This partnership with Roots to Harvest is a great opportunity to explore how urban parks can become more productive environments,” said Werner Schwar, the city’s supervistor of parks and open-space planning.

By Leith Dunick
NewsWatch
April 12, 2016

Excerpt:

The goal of the project, to be paid for with more than $300,000 supplied by several different organizations, is to provide a place for young adults to learn about leadership and employment skills in a variety of ways, including bee keeping, gardening and raising rabbits.

“Nothing instills a strong work ethic in young people better than agricultural work,” said Julie Rosenthal, a former farmer from Murillo and now the lead facilitator with Roots to Harvest, who has partnered with the City of Thunder Bay to launch the ambitious project.

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April 16, 2016   Comments Off on Empty soccer field in Thunder Bay, Ontario, being turned into urban agricultural site

Urban garden plan takes root in London, Ontario

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The committee approved the motion that now will now go to council. It calls for a staff report on how the city can aid community groups on using private land for urban agriculture.

By Norman DeBono
The London Free Press
April 11, 2016

Excerpt:

The city just may get into the gardening business.

A proposal from Coun. Michael van Holst for the city to aid a community group in urban agriculture received a warm reception Monday at a planning and environment committee meeting.

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April 16, 2016   Comments Off on Urban garden plan takes root in London, Ontario

The executive director of the Vancouver Urban Farming Society talks about this emerging sector

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marcMarcela Crowe, at an urban farm at 57th and Cambie, said the Vancouver Urban Farming Society’s mandate is to grow the sector through education, advocacy, business support and networking. Photo Dan Toulgoet.

On the Record with Marcela Crowe: In 2013, urban farmers sold about $418,000 worth of produce to residents.

By Naoibh O’Connor
Vancouver Courier
April 12, 2016

Excerpt:

What does urban farming look like in Vancouver right now?
The data needs to be updated. We don’t have any data for 2016 or even 2015. But we do have data from 2013. That was the last time a large census of urban farms in Vancouver took place. This will have changed, but there are approximately 14 urban farms in Vancouver. The largest one [Sole Food Street Farms] has about four acres of land. [That goes] all the way to maybe a handful of backyard farms totalling 5,000 square feet. There’s really that variety in terms of scale. In 2013, urban farmers sold about $418,000 worth of produce to residents. The farms are located throughout the city. They’re in the Downtown Eastside, they’re in Mount Pleasant, they’re in the east end and they’re in the West Side, Kitsilano area.

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April 13, 2016   Comments Off on The executive director of the Vancouver Urban Farming Society talks about this emerging sector

City Farmer’s Head Gardener, Sharon Slack, Makes Vancouver Newspaper Frontpage Twice in 6 weeks

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SharonFrontVancSun
Sharon Slack, 73, says she prefers working at City Farmer in Kisilano to the typical retirement ‘image’ sold in advertisements. Photo by Arlen Redekop.

“Unretired seniors are working overtime”

By Denise Ryan
The Vancouver Sun
April 8, 2016

Except:

Sharon Slack, 73, head gardener at City Farmer in Kitsilano, said she finds the traditional idea of retirement preposterous.

“The whole image they sell you about retirement — all those TV ads that say: Retire! Do all the things you want to do! Travel! Entertain! Good grief,” she said. “I didn’t do that when I was young. Why in the world would I do it now?”

Slack loves her job, but work isn’t just a pleasure — it’s also a practical matter, she said.

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April 8, 2016   Comments Off on City Farmer’s Head Gardener, Sharon Slack, Makes Vancouver Newspaper Frontpage Twice in 6 weeks

City Farmer holds adult ‘wormshops’ in Vancouver, BC

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wormshVanc

Residents of the City of Vancouver, please call.

City Farmer has held worm composting classes for over 25 years in cooperation with the City of Vancouver. This spring we have limited number of spaces for City residents to purchase $25 worm composters for use in apartments. Each one comes with a bin, lid, tray, worms, bedding and Mary Appelhof’s book, “Worms Eat My Garbage”.

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April 7, 2016   Comments Off on City Farmer holds adult ‘wormshops’ in Vancouver, BC

Urban agriculture camp for teens comes to Ottawa region

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Alex Cool-Fergus, project coordinator at Énviro Educ-Action, advertises their new urban agriculture camp for teens. Evelyn Harford / Postmedia.

The group’s urban agriculture summer camp is part of a growing trend for urbanites to connect with farms for locally produced food.

By Evelyn Harford
Ottawa Citizen
April 1, 2016 |

Excerpt:

The teens will get their hands dirty, planting and gardening during the three-week summer camp. They’ll learn about what it means to go from farm to table, and gain a deeper appreciation for their local food systems. They’ll even get to eat some of the produce they grow.

“Don’t bring your iPad, and don’t bring your cell phone; there’s no point,” said Cool-Fergus. “We’re going to be outside all day.”

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April 6, 2016   Comments Off on Urban agriculture camp for teens comes to Ottawa region

Vancouver, BC community garden to make way for condo development

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cornerClick on image for larger file.

This may be the last spring for a Vancouver community garden in Southeast False Creek.

By Carlito Pablo
Georgia Straight
March 30th, 2016

Excerpt:

According to Brock, temporary gardens play an important role.

“There’s a shortage of urban growing space in the city,” he said, “and so we serve that function of giving people who might not have growing space an opportunity to plant.”

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April 1, 2016   Comments Off on Vancouver, BC community garden to make way for condo development

Victoria, BC Editorial: Urban gardens feed the soul

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colBy John Currin. The Gardeners. 2001. See original here.

Land that grows lawns, shrubs, trees and flowers could just as well be producing food.

Editorial
Times Colonist
Mar 25, 2016

Excerpt:

The capital region is a great place to grow things; there’s no reason more of its landscaping can’t be edible, especially as concerns grow over nutrition, food safety and rising food prices.

Urban agriculture is a growing movement, increasingly supported by municipal governments. The City of Victoria, for example, allows gardening, within certain guidelines, on boulevards, the city-owned strips of land between private property and streets. It has regulations and guidelines for community gardens.

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April 1, 2016   Comments Off on Victoria, BC Editorial: Urban gardens feed the soul