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Category — History

1943: Girl Scouts Learn to Victory Garden

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Professor Harry Nelson of San Francisco’s Junior College

Ann Rosener, photographer
United States. Office of War Information.
1943 Feb. Mar.

Guiding hand behind the establishment of many West coast Victory Gardens, Professor Harry Nelson of San Francisco’s Junior College still finds time to give his ten-year-old daughter Pat (left) and her Girl Scout friends some pointers in transplanting young vegetables

May 25, 2017   Comments Off on 1943: Girl Scouts Learn to Victory Garden

1934 ‘How’s Crops?’ renamed ‘Brownie’s Victory Garden’ in WW2

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Theatrical Short, Van Beuren Studios
Distributed by: RKO Radio Pictures
Cartoon Characters: Cubby Bear (Brownie Bear), Cubby’s Girlfriend, Opossum, Worm.
Directed By George Stallings.
Originally Released in 1934.

[Mike’s note: This is a 1934 cartoon released and renamed in the 1940’s to help with the war effort. ‘Victory Garden’ was not a term used in 1934. Cubby was the original star. She was renamed Brownie.]

Cubby rises and shines with the dawn, and, reading a headline, learns that a “mysterious menace” is attacking farms and destroying crops. He uses his ingenuity to uncover the mystery. Cubby and his girlfriend go underground and create a crop of synthetic vegetables in their underground cave-factory, then force them upward through the soil.

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April 7, 2017   Comments Off on 1934 ‘How’s Crops?’ renamed ‘Brownie’s Victory Garden’ in WW2

1935 by Beate Hahn – ‘Hooray, We Sow and Harvest!’

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Published in Germany – A Garden Book For Children

By Beate Hahn (Horticulturist)
(The author is the mother of famous landscape architect Cornelia Oberlander)
1935 Wilh, Gottl, Korn Verlag, Breslau, Printed in Germany, 110 pages
(This translation was kindly done by Evelyne Teichert.)

Introduction

Today is yet another grim, cold day in November. Outside the wind is blowing through the streets, urging snowflakes along high up into the air. It roars around the street corner, and anyone who meets it will be blown down. This is quite ugly weather, and everyone is happy when they can once again sit in their warm home.

Here in our home a bright wood fire is crackling in the fireplace. When all the big and the small people have completed their daily tasks, we assemble around the red sheen of the fire, because father tells us stories. Mother says that this way she’ll never be able to mend all the torn children’s clothes, but everyone else thinks it is marvelous. If Peter and Lore move over just a bit, then you too will be able to join us on the bench by the fire and listen in. We also have a baked apple for you. you can hear them already crackling in the oven. Lisel, the oldest among us, gets up from time to time to tend to them.

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April 6, 2017   Comments Off on 1935 by Beate Hahn – ‘Hooray, We Sow and Harvest!’

Progress threatens Istanbul’s historic gardens

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The Yedikule gardens provide a livelihood for more than 200 people in Istanbul. TRF/Stephen Starr

“Ten days ago they came and cut down all the trees almost to the roots,” he says. “I don’t know why they did that; maybe because they want a give better view for tourists to take photos of the walls. Who knows?”

By Stephen Starr
Reuters
Mar 16, 2017

Excerpt:

Recep Eraslan, 64, has worked a tiny sliver of land on Istanbul’s historic Sultanahmet peninsula for more than three decades.

He grows spring onions, arugula and cabbage on a 1.25-acre (0.5 hectare) plot along the city’s ancient Byzantine-era walls that are part of one of the oldest urban gardens, or bostans in Turkish, in the world.

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March 24, 2017   Comments Off on Progress threatens Istanbul’s historic gardens

1906 Quebec ‘Journal of Agriculture’ Promoted School Gardens

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The artisan who has to work ten hours a day at his trade, if he has been trained to love his garden, not only finds moderate working in it a pleasing recreation, but finds that it adds materially to his slender income.

By Mr. George Moore
Journal of Agriculture and Horticulture
July 1, 1906
(The Journal was the official organ of the Council of Agriculture of the Province of Quebec.)

Excerpt:

Again, looking at the question from an economic or several stand point, the advantages of a knowledge of horticulture are not to be despised. The lot of many a poor family might have been made smoother had their head have been taught, how properly to cultivate the little plot of land by which their cottage was surrounded.

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March 17, 2017   Comments Off on 1906 Quebec ‘Journal of Agriculture’ Promoted School Gardens

95-year-old Landscape Architect, Cornelia Oberlander, Describes Her Mother’s Gardening Book

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Horticulturist Beate Hahn published ‘The Garden Primer for Kids and Mother’ in 1935.

By Michael Levenston
City Farmer
Mar 14, 2017
(Must see! Mike)

At her home/office in Vancouver, Canada’s famous landscape architect shows us one of her mother’s books on gardening. The book’s artist, Ursel Bartning (1905 – 1990), featured Cornelia in many of the images throughout the book including the cover.

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March 15, 2017   Comments Off on 95-year-old Landscape Architect, Cornelia Oberlander, Describes Her Mother’s Gardening Book

Historic farmhouse in Boston will serve as headquarters of the Urban Farming Institute

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Courtesy Historic Boston Incorporated.

Renovations underway on historic Fowler Clark Epstein farmhouse

By Yawu Miller
The Bay Street Banner
Feb 15, 2017

Excerpt:

Since September, work crews have been busy tackling decades of paint that adorns the 18th century face of Mattapan’s Fowler Clark Epstein Farm. They have embarked upon a historical restoration of the building that is expected to be completed later this year. The Fowler Clark Epstein Farm, built between 1786 and 1806, once occupied part of a 330-acre Dorchester estate; over the years, it was subdivided into smaller lots at a time when the Mattapan section of Dorchester was dominated by farms.

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February 21, 2017   Comments Off on Historic farmhouse in Boston will serve as headquarters of the Urban Farming Institute

Louisiana tribes restore traditional diets in the face of climate change

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Photography by Edmund D. Fountain.

Native Americans are losing their ability to live off the land as it has crumbled into the Gulf of Mexico. Some of them are trying to figure out how to survive on what’s left.

By Barry Yeoman
Food and Environmental Network
Southern Foodways Alliance’s Gravy podcast, The Lens
February 9, 2017

Excerpts:

A few decades ago, the Pointe-au-Chien tribal members of Louisiana fed themselves well—they fished in nearby waters, raised livestock, planted fruits and vegetables, trapped marsh hens, and even hunted turtle and alligator. But as the tides, driven higher by climate change, started to eat up the tribe’s territory leaving fewer places to put a garden or raise livestock and less terrain to hunt and forage for wild plants, the tribe turned to processed foods. And as water levels continued to rise, so did rates of diabetes and cholesterol.

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February 15, 2017   Comments Off on Louisiana tribes restore traditional diets in the face of climate change

Mexico’s Ancient Floating Gardens Double As An Experiment In Urban Farming

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Ricardo Rodriguez, founder of the De La Chinampa a Tu Mesa program. (Naomi Tomky)

When the Spanish arrived in 1519, they drained many of the lakes, shrinking Xochimilco’s agricultural capacity, and forbade the cultivation of indigenous products like chia, a seed favored for its nutritional properties.

By Naomi Tomky
smithsonian.com
January 31, 2017

Excerpt:

But weekdays, calm descends and the garden’s age-long purpose—as a place to cultivate crops—comes into relief. Ricardo Rodriguez, a 41-year-old pioneer in Mexico’s urban agriculture movement, is my guide through the quiet backside of the chinampas (floating islands) where Rodriguez helps the local farmers who are revitalizing traditional agriculture.

Rodriquez has nothing against the usual eating, drinking, and partying that goes on in the park. But he is quick to emphasize, “That’s just one of the three parts of Xochimilco.” The second part is the commercial farms that propagate huge fields of flowers using pesticides.

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February 6, 2017   Comments Off on Mexico’s Ancient Floating Gardens Double As An Experiment In Urban Farming

3,800-year-old wetland potato garden found in Canada

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Wapato tubers were a dietary staple among the indigenous people of the Fraser and Columbia rivers — the garden site is in what is now the Katzie First Nation territory

The History Blog
2016-12-31

Excerpt:

The tubers were wild plants, not domesticated, and wapato plants can grow deep underground all on their own. It’s an assemblage of rocks that makes it clear that this site wasn’t just a very prolific wild potato patch, but a cultivated wetland garden ingeniously customized by the indigenous people of the area to enhance harvest yields.

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January 8, 2017   Comments Off on 3,800-year-old wetland potato garden found in Canada

1860: Brooklyn City Farmer involved in ‘A Bad Trade’

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eagle Click on image for larger file. Old Brooklyn Farm Lands.

Apples taken

New York Times
Oct 25, 1860

Brooklyn News

A Bad Trade – A New York merchant, who does a little farming in a small way, in the eighteenth Ward, had a few barrels of very choice apples on his trees this Fall. Last week a man who was passing by made him a tempting offer for the apples, which was accepted, and the purchaser agreed to gather them the next morning. Our City farmer waited some time for his customer the following morning, and finally proceeded to his business without seeing him. Upon returning home in the evening, he found the purchaser had been there and gathered the apples, but left without paying for them. The City farmer has not seen him since.

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December 1, 2016   Comments Off on 1860: Brooklyn City Farmer involved in ‘A Bad Trade’

1930: Only working farm in Manhattan 86 years ago

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213thJune 8, 1933. Broadway, east side, north from 213th Street, with the N.E. corner in the foreground. Behind the billboards is a truck garden.

213and10 Manhattan area today. Click on image for larger file.

The farmer’s children can’t lay in the street, however. They might get hit by a taxi.

About New York
By Richard Massock
Corsicana Daily
Aug 23, 1930
(Early use of the term ‘urban agriculture’. Mike)

Urban Agriculture

Right here on Manhattan Island, with its skyscraper, tenements, subways and million population, there’s a farm.

It is the only one in town and it is bounded on three sides by seven story apartments. On the other side is the Tenth Avenue elevated railroad. It is an easy tomato’s throw from Broadway at 213th Street.

It is not, of course, a rancho. It is just a city block in size and it belongs to a New Orleans man who rents it to the Benedettos, Vincent, his wife, their four boys and five girls.

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November 25, 2016   Comments Off on 1930: Only working farm in Manhattan 86 years ago

1940 Chicago: Cultivates Flowers and Vegetables in Shadow of the Loop

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chicagodailytrib-aug-7-1940
Urban agriculture. Lewis A. Wade hoeing his corn on one-eighth acre on the Chicago river bank between Van Buren Street and Jackson boulevard bridges, not far from the loop. Bridge is elevated lines’ span south of Jackson. (Tribune photo.) [Early use of the tern ‘urban agriculture’. Mike] Click on image for larger file.

Chicago City Farmer

Chicago Daily Tribune
Aug 7, 1940

In the shadow of loop buildings a garden was thriving yesterday. It occupies one-eighth of an acre on the west bank of the Chicago River, between the Van Buren Street and Jackson Boulevard bridges.

Lewis A. Wade has a photographic studio in an adjoining building and tends the garden. He reported yesterday that the corn and tomato yields are exceptionally good. And the lilacs, roses snowballs, and iris grow as luxuriantly as in a rural setting.

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November 17, 2016   Comments Off on 1940 Chicago: Cultivates Flowers and Vegetables in Shadow of the Loop

1982 Article: Richard Britz Author of ‘The Edible City’ Visits Vancouver

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britzediblecity623 Click on image for larger file.

City Farmer Hosts Author For Lecture Series

By Elizabeth Godley
Vancouver Sun
Feb 22, 1982

Dream of ‘city farming’ explained

Richard Britz knows a lot of people think his theories are naive.

But the architect cum systems designer cum landscape philosopher from Eugene, Ore., doesn’t mind.

Britz is author of a resource manual for urban agriculturalists called The Edible City. He was in Vancouver Saturday to speak at the first of 18 weekly lectures sponsored by City Farmer.

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November 14, 2016   Comments Off on 1982 Article: Richard Britz Author of ‘The Edible City’ Visits Vancouver

Indianapolis has deep roots in urban ag

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indyh

Hoosiers don’t just grow foods in the countryside, where acres of land are open for planting. They grow food in backyards and kitchen windows — in alleyways and on rooftops.

By Erica Quinlan, Field Editor
AgriNews
Oct 31, 2016

Excerpt:

During World War II, Victory Gardens were encouraged by the U.S. government to encourage citizens to grow their own food.

“The response we had was pretty amazing,” Toner said. “In Indiana, by 1945 we had gathered up more than 800,000 Victory Gardens. By 1945, Indiana’s Victory Gardens produced almost $11 million in wholesale dollars — nearly $26 million in retail value.

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November 9, 2016   Comments Off on Indianapolis has deep roots in urban ag