New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'
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Category — Entrepreneurs

For his mobile-farming, engineer receives Indira Gandhi Award


With the automated farming system, one can do farming right from the city

By Naveeta Singh
Dec 6, 2014


Under the automated farming system, one can do farming right from the city with the help of a mobile device or a tablet. It also needs less labour on field. “A mobile network at the farm is necessary. There is a data processing unit at the form which has a SIM card. The card will acquire data like, weather conditions, humidity, water required, among others, from the processor and transmit it to your mobile phone,” says Kesarkar.

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December 13, 2014   No Comments

San Francisco’s Mission High and Bi-Rite Market partner in a neighborhood divided

missionMission High School vendors with Bi-Rite Market staff.

It’s a neighborhood where Mark Zuckerberg now owns a home, and a place where an affluent, whiter population is displacing lower-income residents, many of them Latino.

By Laura Klivans
Dec 3, 2014


On a windy day in San Francisco I’m at the back of Mission High School with teacher Rachel Vigil and her urban agriculture class. We’re outside on the edge of their football field. Students are moving between carefully laid dirt beds, each stretching 30 feet long.

“Listen up,” Vigil says as this class period comes to a close, “we have ten minutes before we have to head to the college center so I’d like everyone to just do a sweep of any green material that is on the paths. Please put it in the compost and pick up any gloves that are hanging out.”

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December 10, 2014   No Comments

The Business of Urban Farming Takes Root in Detroit

brotherBrother Nature Produce. Specialty Produce Location: North Corktown, Detroit.

During his first year, Willerer earned almost the equivalent of his teaching salary.

Yahoo News
Dec 3, 2014


Greg Willerer may not seem like your average entrepreneur. The once full-time school teacher quit his job to follow his passion for farming in the most unlikely of places. Located not far from Downtown Detroit, Willerer launched his urban farming business on just one acre of land.

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December 10, 2014   No Comments

Garden Tower Project on Kickstarter reached goal and now exceeds $273,000

Campaign sets records for the Garden Tower 2, capable of growing 50 plants in a footprint of only 4 square feet.

Press Release
Dec 2014

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (Dec. 3, 2014) – Garden Tower Project reached its goal on Kickstarter for the Garden Tower 2 in just 30 minutes and has now exceeded $273,000 in crowd funding as the campaign enters its final days. Garden Tower Project is now the third largest crowd-funding project on record for Indiana and the largest ever for Bloomington.

Backers have until midnight Sunday, Dec. 7 to support the company’s new release, which will make urban gardening possible for all, from those with limited mobility, to high-rise apartment dwellers and even entire communities facing water restrictions.

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December 3, 2014   Comments Off

‘Print’ Your Veggies? Israeli Start-Up Bringing Urban Farming to Countertops

Sea vegetable Khai-nam grows in Thailand, Myanmar and Laos

By: Tamar Auber
Nov 21


After much trial and error, the result was GreenOnyx, a countertop machine that cultivates and grows the sea vegetable automatically and then delivers the nutritious green food source at a push of a button in either liquefied or paste form.

The juice can then be used to make smoothies and the paste can be used to add nutritious to nearly any meal.

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December 3, 2014   Comments Off

Cambodia: For Those Who Can Afford It, Urban Farming Bears Fruit

A catfish forms? Part of the aquaponics system at Mr Chandara’s farm. (Neou Vannarin/The Cambodia Daily)

Mr. Chandara and Mr. Sophal said that if more farmers adopted their modern cultivation methods, the country’s agriculture industry would be more stable and productive.

By Neou Vannarin
The Cambodian Daily
Nov 25, 2014


The hydroponics system does away with many of the hassles of traditional farming while allowing vegetation to thrive in a confined urban setting, using only the electricity needed to power a small pump, Mr. Sophal said.

Since he first turned on the taps of his contraption in 2011 after taking a short course on hydroponics in Thailand, Mr. Sophal’s urban farming experiment has gone from a pet project to a full-fledged enterprise.

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December 1, 2014   Comments Off

Urban Farmers Trade Goods and Stories at ‘Crop Swaps’

Lila Skye, far left, and other city farmers swapped goods this month in her driveway in Richmond, Calif. Credit Jim Wilson/The New York Times

Charles Daniels, an 80-year-old retired lawn and garden shop owner, came with apples, sorrel and pepino dulce, a South American fruit that tastes like a blend of honeydew and cantaloupe.

By Patricia Leigh Brown
New York Times
Nov. 27, 2014


OAKLAND, Calif. — The Bay Area is a culinary never-never land, a place where aspiring apiarists hire beekeeping coaches, and even 7-year-olds can discuss the virtues of Himalayan salt.

That is why, on a recent Sunday, a motley group of gardeners bearing windfall harvests of habanero chiles, persimmons and prickly pear cactus fruit gathered for a “crop swap,” an urban agricultural ritual in which city farmers get together to share their surplus bounty.

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November 28, 2014   Comments Off

Student Entrepreneur Earning Buzz in Effort to Feed World’s Hungry


He thinks the use of “vertical agriculture” will allow agriculture to expand into previously non-agricultural areas – places like cities.

By Michael Martin Garrett
State College
November 17, 2014


Zeangle, and the rest of the Green Towers team, has been getting a lot of attention for a design that Zeangle thinks can solve the problem – or at least get agriculture moving in the right direction. He calls it a “living wall.”

He describes it as a vertical conveyer belt that moves around a central point powered by a water wheel. All along the wall are boxes for plants grown using hydroponics – a technique that uses water and nutrients without the need for soil.

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November 22, 2014   Comments Off

Baltimore City eyes investing in urban flower farming

Ellen Frost of Local Color Flowers.

Ellen Frost of Local Color Flowers only buys flowers from within a 100-mile radius

By Yvonne Wenger,
The Baltimore Sun
Nov 12, 2014


“Flowers are a good option for people who are interested in farming but want to try something different or have a niche that sets them apart from food growers,” Frost said. “For us, it’s exciting as a viable entrepreneurial option for farmers, and to eliminate blight.”

With about a dozen urban farms operating in Baltimore, city officials are investigating other ways to use vacant lots, said Jenny Guillaume, the Growing Green Initiative coordinator for the city’s Office of Sustainability. The city started a push for more community gardens in 2011 to uplift blighted neighborhoods, give families access to more healthy food options and help unemployed residents earn money.

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November 20, 2014   Comments Off

Street food and urban and periurban agriculture- FAO Forum until Dec 8

local fresh

The role that urban agriculture in providing street food vendors with safe, fresh and nutritious produce at a low cost.

Global Forum on Food Security and Nutrition
Until Dec 8, 2014

Street foods in urban areas are often the most accessible means of obtaining an affordable meal for millions of consumers every day and urban and periurban agriculture can provide street food vendors with the required local, fresh, nutritious and less expensive ingredients.

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November 19, 2014   Comments Off

NASA Interested in Robotic Gardening Technology Developed by University Students

Heather Hava, right, who is working on a doctorate in aerospace engineering sciences at the University of Colorado Boulder, describes a computerized system she is developing with other graduate students participating in the exploration HABitat (X-Hab) Academic Innovation Challenge.

The ROGR robots can visit a specific plant to deliver water or to locate and grasp a fruit or vegetable. If an astronaut requests tomatoes for a salad, the system decides which specific plants have the ripest tomatoes and assigns parallel harvesting tasks to ROGR.

By Bob Granath
NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, Florida
July 7, 2014


For more than a half-century, NASA has made the stuff of science fiction into reality. Researchers are continuing that tradition by designing robots to work in a deep-space habitat, tending gardens and growing food for astronaut explorers. It sounds like a concept from Star Wars, but a team of graduate students from the University of Colorado Boulder is now developing the innovative technology to make it possible.

As astronauts explore beyond Earth, they will need to make their habitat as self-sustaining as possible. This includes growing fruits and vegetables.

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November 17, 2014   Comments Off

The Seedsheet – The Future of Fresh

See their Kickstarter page

By Cam MacKugler
The Seedsheet
Nov 2014


Create your virtual garden using our online patent-pending garden-builder software. Slide the dimension bars to select the size of your existing bed. Input your zip code so we can determine your home’s hardiness zone, and filter our available plants to suggest those that will thrive in your specific environment. Then peruse our expansive selection of vegetables, fruits, and herbs to build the garden of your dreams. As you build, watch as we display your estimated germination percentage, the days until harvest, and the money you’re saving!

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November 15, 2014   Comments Off

Pop Star Jason Mraz does a little farming in the Motor City

Pop star Jason Mraz harvest lettuce this afternoon at Plum Street Market Garden at MGM Grand Detroit.
Photo: Brian McCollum.

“It’s been a city of industry in the past, and who says it can’t be a city of agriculture and creativity?”

By Brian McCollum,
Detroit Free Press Pop Music Writer
Nov 6, 2014


The publicity was welcomed by the nonprofit KGD, which works with local gardeners and entrepreneurs while advocating for a day when most of the fruit and vegetables consumed in Detroit are grown locally.

Mraz was the Plum Street farm’s most notable celebrity visitor yet, said KGD co-direct Eitan Sussman.

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November 8, 2014   Comments Off

Heirlooms R Us – Brewster, Kansas

Cliff and Pamela don’t feel they face many obstacles due to growing their seeds without synthetic fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides.

The seed business supplements their primary income from Social Security.

By Diane Desenberg
Ground Breaking Roots
July 13, 2014

I was tickled pink to find Cliff and Pamela Fox of Our Vegetable Patch. They are all about heirloom seeds. I didn’t have an email address or telephone number for them, so I was forced to show up unannounced at their Brewster, Kansas home. As I was trying to figure out whether anyone was around, they came down the street, having just returned from a fishing vacation. They were genuinely thrilled to share their excitement about the 225 varieties of seeds they grow.

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November 6, 2014   Comments Off

3-D Printed Gardens Can Grow in Any Shape

Plant grown from yarn ball printed by Takeuchi’s 3D printer.

The researcher has started out with relatively small plants, such as watercress, and herbs such as arugula and basil. But eventually, he plans to print yarn encasements big enough to grow fruit, vegetables and even trees.

By Patrick J. Kiger
News Discovery
Oct 27, 2014


Sony computer scientist Yuichiro Takeuchi has figured out a way to print entire gardens filled with herbs and flowers, which can then be planted in empty lots or on rooftops, or on vertical surfaces such as building walls. Or pretty much anyplace else for that matter.

Takeuchi told Business Insider that he foresees the new technology as a way to add a little green space to cities, without labor-intensive landscaping and planting that he thinks discourages some would-be gardeners.

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November 5, 2014   Comments Off