New Stories From 'Urban Agriculture Notes'
Random header image... Refresh for more!

Category — Entrepreneurs

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

greent

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

Excerpt:

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.

[Read more →]

November 22, 2014   No Comments

Baltimore City eyes investing in urban flower farming

EllenBalt
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

Excerpt:

“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.

[Read more →]

November 20, 2014   No Comments

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.

[Read more →]

November 19, 2014   No Comments

NASA Interested in Robotic Gardening Technology Developed by University Students

robt
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

Excerpt:

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.

[Read more →]

November 17, 2014   No Comments

The Seedsheet – The Future of Fresh

See their Kickstarter page

By Cam MacKugler
The Seedsheet
Nov 2014

Excerpt:

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!

[Read more →]

November 15, 2014   No Comments

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

pops
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

Excerpt:

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.

[Read more →]

November 8, 2014   Comments Off

Heirlooms R Us – Brewster, Kansas

seedsru
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.

[Read more →]

November 6, 2014   Comments Off

3-D Printed Gardens Can Grow in Any Shape

sony
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

Excerpt:

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.

[Read more →]

November 5, 2014   Comments Off

Vancouver’s FoodGROWS offers farming solutions geared to windows, patios and balconies

tasi
FoodGROWS offers a variety of low-tech and high-tech solutions for confined urban spaces.

Garden shop occupies a tiny niche in the urban landscape

By Randy Shore
Vancouver Sun
November 2, 2014

Excerpt:

FoodGROWS.com is designed to occupy a niche not well served by garden suppliers or serious back-to-the-land outfitters. The website even has a 10-question entry point that helps guide new customers to the products best suited to their space and temperament.

Products range from low-tech wooden planters and wall-mounted pouch planters to high-tech plastic tower gardens for balconies and rooftops and soil-free growing systems, including a tabletop aquaponic herb planter with an aquarium base (goldfish not included).

[Read more →]

November 3, 2014   Comments Off

Online questionnaire to be completed by Urban Agriculture Entrepreneurs

almost

MSc thesis student is exploring business models in urban agriculture

Shuang Liu (MSc student in Organic Agriculture, Wageningen University)
Han Wiskerke (Professor of Rural Sociology, Wageningen University)

Despite the growing attention and support for urban agriculture and the increase in urban farming businesses, little is known about the business aspects of UA. This is not only an omission in UA research, but it could also constrain the development of UA businesses in the future.

[Read more →]

October 22, 2014   Comments Off

Yard Too Small For A Garden? Grow Vegetables Vertically

paul
Paul Langdon, of Wethersfield, and his vertical portable hydroponic garden. Photo by Stephen Dunn / Hartford Courant.

Won first prize in the sustainability category last weekend at the Maker Faire

By Christopher Hoffman
Courant
Sept 26, 2014

Excerpt:

The 43-year-old software engineer turned to hydroponics, or gardening without soil. Langdon and his friend Curt Downing of Glastonbury designed and built a compact, vertical hydroponic garden that grows 160 plants and is controlled from a cell phone.

Langdon and Downing aren’t the only ones who think the garden — made of PVC pipe, downspouts and gutters — is cool. Earlier this month, their rig won first prize in the New York Maker Faire’s sustainability category.

[Read more →]

October 19, 2014   Comments Off

Wenatchee, Washington, where pot is legal: Farming city makes room for a new crop

weedsd
Click on image for larger file. Gardener Dustin Hurst talks about his operation at Monkey Grass Farms, an indoor marijuana growing company operating in East Wenatchee, Washington. “Raising cannabis is my favorite thing, and I can’t think of anything else I’d want to do,” he said. Marc Lester / ADN. See complete slide show here.

City Mayor Frank Kuntz voted in favor of the initiative. Nationally, “I think that’s where we’re headed … whether you like it or don’t like it.”

By Laurel Andrews
Alaska Dispatch News
Oct. 16, 2014

Excerpt:

Drive through East Wenatchee, past rows of tidy apple orchards, and you’ll come across Gecko Growers marijuana farm. Visible from the road, a 12-foot wall rises around the marijuana plants, in striking contrast to neighboring farms that have no fences or visible security.

“Beautiful, isn’t it?” co-owner Kevin Dietz said on a sunny September afternoon, standing on the deck overlooking the outdoor grow. He watched with crossed arms as co-owner and master gardener Gary Bryant disappeared and reappeared among the farm’s 259 plants, some of which reached 13 feet into the sky.

[Read more →]

October 18, 2014   Comments Off

Roaming city farm on derelict Hull sites aims to combat food poverty in UK

pop
Grand Design: An artist’s impression of how the farm could look.

“Empty land doesn’t do anything for the aesthetic of the city and our idea is to use these derelict spaces to create something that will add value.”

By Hull Daily Mail
October 08, 2014

Excerpt:

The mobile farm will be housed in ship containers that reflect Hull’s shipping heritage, which can be easily moved to different locations around the city.

Mark said: “The concept is simple – we build a temporary site on unused land and if a developer wants the site back, we can simply pick it up and shift it to a new home.”

[Read more →]

October 18, 2014   Comments Off

Angel City’s Limited Edition Rooftop Ale – Made with Rooftop Hops in LA


Meet Ray, Angel City’s resident farmer. Ray turns spent grain from the brewing process into compost, and grows hops on our rooftop garden in Downtown LA.

Roof-to-bottle – available in 22oz bottles and on draft

By Justin Bolois
Los Angeles Magazine
Oct 7, 2014

Excerpt:

Adjacent to the fruits and vegetables are blue 55-gallon drums used to grow Cascade, Chinook, and Columbus hops for the Rooftop Ale. Narkevicius devised his own drain-back irrigation system, and put coconut husks at the bottom of each drum to act as a filter. “The way he draws up schematics is amazing,” says Foerstner. “He’s like Da Vinci in that way.”

The Rooftop Ale is a light and citrusy pale ale—a great complement to the vegetal, grassy aroma that wafts from the garden. Narkevicius describes the whole thing as a grand “experiment.” They were able to harvest just under 14 pounds of hops, but he insists they have their sights set on a much larger yield for the next go-around. In the meantime, Narkevicius is busy toying with pH levels of the water and drawing up other ideas to expand his operation.

[Read more →]

October 13, 2014   Comments Off

Female Urban Farmers Make Nude Calendar To Raise Money For New Land

From Ten-Speed Greens Urban Farm

By James Cave
The Huffington Post
09/26/2014

Excerpt:

Two Florida women hope that by selling a pin-up calendar featuring naked female farmers and strategically placed produce, they can raise enough money for a down payment on some new land.

That’s the pitch behind an Indiegogo campaign from Ten-Speed Greens Urban Farm. The company’s owners, Claire Mitchell and Danielle Krasniqi, are currently farm-less; the landlord of their previous farm wanted to build homes there instead. So the ladies and their friends decided to strip down — tastefully — and rally folks to donate to their cause.

[Read more →]

September 27, 2014   Comments Off