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India: This farming app lets you grow and harvest your own organic food

Farmizen is a mobile based application that enables an individual to grow chemical-free organic food in a mini-farm.

By Queeny Mahajan
Your Story
2nd January 2018

Excerpt:

Situated on the periphery of Bengaluru city, Farmizen manages five farms of 10.5 acres, divided into mini farms of 600 sq ft each. By paying Rs 2500 as a monthly subscription fee that includes the monthly rent to the farmers, the individuals can grow vegetables of their choice as per the season in the twelve beds allocated to them in their mini farm. They control the farm through an app just like Farmville and can visit the farm anytime and harvest their own chemical-free produce.

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January 9, 2018   No Comments

UK: How gardening helped my mental health – “It became my therapy”

Global Garden Project from Green Synergy.

Gardening therapy is being prescribed more and more frequently by GPs after a study at Harvard University found time spent pottering around outside resulted in substantially lower levels of depression among participants.

By NetDoctor
21 December 2017

Excerpt:

“5 years came and went, but very slowly I began to get better. With support from my mum I attended a mindfulness course that helped me go along to a community gardening group, Green Synergy. And whilst I also enjoyed the haven my own garden gave me, little did I know then the effect that community gardening would have on me.

“The outside world at times still felt terrifying but with my gardening volunteering, I started to feel valued, was part of a team again and started to learn new skills. The act of tending to something, looking after it, seeing it grow and flourish was hugely rewarding too. I didn’t need to be knowledgeable and it was ok to make mistakes as a garden will never judge – gardening had become my therapy.

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December 28, 2017   Comments Off on UK: How gardening helped my mental health – “It became my therapy”

Fellows earn urban farming certification completing 11-month program

Alex Badecker with certificate.

The nine people received certificates in urban agriculture endorsed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service.

By Tammie Smith
Richmond Times-Dispatch
Dec 17, 2017

Excerpt:

The students spent 15 to 20 hours a week in training — hands-on in the field and in the classroom where topics included holistic business planning, farm business plan development, financial projections and cash flow, record keeping and decision-making for farm profitability.

“My goal is to sell to restaurants and farmers markets,” said Alex Badecker, who grows asparagus, sweet potatoes and other produce part time on an approximately 6,000-square-foot plot in Henrico County.

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December 24, 2017   Comments Off on Fellows earn urban farming certification completing 11-month program

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: 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

Rebuilding Iraq: Proposed 3D-Printing ‘Farming Bridges’ To Regenerate War-Torn Mosul

The farms and orchards will be irrigated by water from the Tigris river. All images © Vincent Callebaut architectures

The stacked housing units conceived by Vincent Callebaut are covered with urban farms and agricultural fields.

By Isabel Narea
DesignBoom
Oct 31, 2017

Excerpt:

This would not only guarantee food autonomy to inhabitants, but also excellent thermal inertia to the built environment. the farms and orchards are irrigated by water from the tigris river, and plowed by archimedes screws. Furthermore, gray water from bathrooms and kitchens is recycled and filtered by plants in lagoon waterfalls connected with the river. biomass composters feed the orchards and vegetable gardens suspended in biological fertilizers.

Titled ‘five farming bridges’, the concept puts forward the construction of affordable and adaptable bridges topped with modular housing units. The inhabited bridges are seen as a strategy to rebuild a new city over the ruins of the old one. to address the shortage of affordable housing, the bridges would be 3D printed using debris from war ruins, creating more than 53,000 homes.

Read the complete article here.

November 5, 2017   Comments Off on Rebuilding Iraq: Proposed 3D-Printing ‘Farming Bridges’ To Regenerate War-Torn Mosul

Singapore: Avid gardeners find innovative ways to cultivate plots

Volunteer gardeners (above) from Cosy Garden in Bukit Batok use wilted goods to produce enzyme solutions for their plants, which include the Carissa Carandas, whose fruit is used for pickling. St Photos: Jonathan Choo

The garden uses five types of enzyme solutions made of ingredients such as banana shoots, over-ripe papayas and bananas, egg shells, milk and lemongrass.

By Ankita Varma
Straits Times
Oct 14, 2017

Excerpt:

For the past two years, they have been making these special solutions and using them on the plants.

Do they work?

The garden certainly looks great. Called Cosy Garden, it is a delightful space for the neighbourhood. The garden comprises three separate plots of land with sculptures, landscaping, flowers, herbs and a butterfly enclosure.

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October 20, 2017   Comments Off on Singapore: Avid gardeners find innovative ways to cultivate plots

Canada: 1984 film – ‘My Urban Garden’ – Filmed in Halifax

“As relevant today as it was when it was made.” Mike

By Polly Bennell, Director
National Film Board
1984 | 26 min

(Must See. Mike – City Farmer was consulted on this film in the early 1980’s)

Excerpt:

In this short film, Halifax gardener Carol Bowlby harvests a mouth-watering crop from her small backyard plot. In considering soil quality, lack of space and a short growing season challenges rather than obstacles, she offers a wealth of practical growing tips for urban gardeners. By heeding Bowlby’s advice, bountiful organic gardens work equally well on apartment balconies, in small or large city lots or in a rural setting.

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October 11, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: 1984 film – ‘My Urban Garden’ – Filmed in Halifax

Dissertation: ‘Neighbourhood to Agrihood: Exploring the extent to which urban agriculture can support inclusive redevelopment in Detroit’

Recent graduate Hannah Gillie (Geography 2014) awarded first place in RGS-IBG Food Geographies Undergraduate Dissertation Prize.

By Hannah Gillie
Fitzwilliam College
Sept 28, 2017

Excerpt:

Abstract of Hannah’s study:

Detroit may be America’s hub of urban agriculture (UA), but what does this mean for redevelopment in the city? Amid spiralling urban crises, bankruptcy and decay, farms and gardens have spread across Detroit and continue to be key features of the cityscape, whilst investment and development return to select areas of the city. Despite much research on the socio-cultural, environmental, health and food security elements of UA, less is known about the economic development potentials and limitations of urban food cultivation. Even less studied are urban agrihoods. These are new mixed-use developments centred on farming, and Detroit is home to the supposed first ‘sustainable urban agrihood’ in America. As the story in Detroit follows a recent narrative of urban recovery, gentrification is beginning to surface as an issue. Given this context, this study examines the extent to which gentrification is interacting with UA and the implications this has for UA centred redevelopment.

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October 7, 2017   Comments Off on Dissertation: ‘Neighbourhood to Agrihood: Exploring the extent to which urban agriculture can support inclusive redevelopment in Detroit’

Agricultura Urbana – Espacios de Cultivo para una Ciudad Sostenibles

Urban Agriculture – Spaces of Cultivation for a Sustainable City

By Graciela Arosemena
Editorial Gustavo Gili, S.L.; 1 edition
2012. 128 pages.

Excerpt from review by François Mancebo, PhD:

In her short book Urban Agriculture, Graciela Arosemena, gives an overview of urban agriculture’s history until the great rupture and asks a question: Now that agriculture has moved outside the city, is it time to bring it back again? Her answer is “yes”, for many reasons which she associates with the idea of making cities more sustainable. In her vision, urban agriculture can stop the vicious circle of real estate speculation, provide a healthy leisure, foster social cohesion, support a new management of organic waste to reduce city’s ecological footprint and provide food security—if not complete self-sufficiency—by allowing citizens to consume locally grown vegetables and ripe fruits.

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September 13, 2017   Comments Off on Agricultura Urbana – Espacios de Cultivo para una Ciudad Sostenibles

Call for papers: Assessing the Sustainability of Urban Agriculture: Methodological Advances and Case Studies

Deadline Dec 15, 2017

The MDPI journal Sustainability is now calling for papers that contribute to the assessment of the sustainability of urban agriculture, both by advancing methodological approaches and by providing results from case studies.

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September 12, 2017   Comments Off on Call for papers: Assessing the Sustainability of Urban Agriculture: Methodological Advances and Case Studies

Canada: Community farming project in Toronto’s Brockton Village grows food in front yards

Brockton Village farming project started with 250 letters left in mailboxes offering to farm neighbourhood yards. Three months later, five yards have harvested a wide variety of crops, including romaine lettuce, arugula, radishes, turnips, beans, cucumbers, tomatoes and kale.

By Ellen Brait
The Star
Aug. 31, 2017

Excerpt:

Rosenthal said his children, Stella, 7, and Cy, 3, have especially loved their front yard farm. The towering corn stalks stop people on the street, and he said both his kids love giving tours of their plot.

“They love talking about it,” Rosenthal said. “My daughter went to camp and I was with her when she met her bunk mates and she was joking she lived on a farm. It is funny but I had to say, ‘You don’t. Some people might actually live on a farm. You live in the city and there happens to be stuff in your front yard.’ ”

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September 8, 2017   Comments Off on Canada: Community farming project in Toronto’s Brockton Village grows food in front yards

Alaska: The Fairbanks Community Garden Saw Its First Frost Sept 3

Fairbanks Community Garden started in 1979.

Temperatures are expected to stay above freezing at night for the remainder of the week according to the National Weather Service forecast

By Erin Granger
Daily News-Miner
Sept 4, 2017

Excerpt:

“We have brassicas here,” Fiera said as she toured her small gardening plot. “We have kale and cabbages still in the ground over here. I’m also growing celery, flowers, squash, beets, potatoes.”

Among her other vegetables, Fiera also grew a giant Alaskan cabbage this summer that weighed 16 pounds. Her 3-year-old son watered the garden every day with her and won a blue ribbon at the Tanana Valley State Fair for the cabbage, Fiera said.

Signs of frost damage could be seen on Fiera’s potato, squash and bean plants, which were beginning to turn brown along the leaves and stem.

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September 4, 2017   Comments Off on Alaska: The Fairbanks Community Garden Saw Its First Frost Sept 3

New Zealand: Once derelict garden in Bishop Auckland is transformed

“When we first came 17 years ago the allotments were really dilapidated – with people bringing old doors for fences and lots of old rackety sheds.

By Catherine Priestley
The Advertiser
Aug 28, 2017

Excerpt:

In 2001 the site was under-occupied, overgrown and rundown, with just about half of the plots in use and derelict buildings and rubbish on other parts of the site.

Gardeners, also worried the land was ripe for development, set up South Church Allotment Society to turn around its fortunes.

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September 4, 2017   Comments Off on New Zealand: Once derelict garden in Bishop Auckland is transformed

Gotham Greens: Four High-Tech Vegetable Farms in New York City, Chicago

Video Story

Bloomberg
Aug 22, 2017

The challenge of providing fresh produce to consumers and restaurants in big cities has been an opportunity for Gotham Greens. Co-founder and CEO Viraj Puri explains how his commercial-scale urban farming company has expanded from its startup roots.

August 31, 2017   Comments Off on Gotham Greens: Four High-Tech Vegetable Farms in New York City, Chicago