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Category — United States

Sacramento agriculturalists turn their yards into gardens to feed the city

Judith and Chanowk Yisrael dig their urban ag lifestyle. Photos By Kevin Cortopassi.

“Any family can do it,” she says about growing her own food. “And as families pass by, they actually see it.”

By Janelle Bitker
News Review


Chanowk Yisrael stands tall above a plot of dark green leaves, stems and pods, ready to harvest. He nimbly slices off okra into a brown wicker basket with his tool of choice: a machete.

No, no, no, he insists, laughing. He doesn’t have a weird thing for machetes. He just grabbed it for some reason. Besides, his clippers are unavailable— he already handed them to four volunteers harvesting bright red Thai chili peppers. His helpers are down in the dirt, breathing in the clean, urban farm air, saying things like “so peaceful” with a sigh. Chanowk’s shoulder-length dreads bounce with him as he scours beds for more peppers prime for plucking.

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October 2, 2015   No Comments

Urban Adamah to Break Ground on New Farm in West Berkeley


“We envisioned a new home on the site that would double the size of our existing space and dramatically increase our impact in the community through the expansion of our food production and educational programs.”

By Emilie Raguso
Berkeleyside NOSH


A sustainable agriculture organization with plans for an ambitious urban farm, and a training program for the next generation of farmers, is slated to break ground over the next few days on a project set to cover more than 2 acres of vacant land in West Berkeley.

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September 23, 2015   No Comments

Portland State University gave their counterparts from Montreal, Canada, a grand tour of the City’s urban farms

Rooftop Garden at Noble Rot Restaurant. See more about the garden.

Both cities — while much different in size — share the same latitude and a population that is “environmentally oriented,” McClintock says.

By Jennifer Anderson
Portland Tribune
Sept 15, 2015


Eight PSU graduate students took eight Canadian graduate students to meetings and site visits at some of Portland’s best-kept secrets: urban gardens that have sprouted in recent years to help fight hunger, empower low-income residents, educate children, and give youth and adults access to healthy food right in their backyard or neighborhood.

It’s fascinating stuff for planners, since it is a byproduct of gentrification in hot spots like Portland, says Nate McClintock, the PSU assistant professor who spearheaded the student exchange.

“Essentially, urban agriculture arises where there’s vacant land, cheap land, a low market rate or wherever food justice activity pops up,” McClintock says. “So many of these projects produce food to address the so-called food desert.”

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September 21, 2015   No Comments

Urban Farms in Washington DC

Gail Taylor runs Three Part Harmony Farm in Northeast Washington’s Brookland neighborhood. (Bill O’Leary/The Washington Post)

The Shaw nursery Old City Green has re-christened itself Old City Farm, piled soil onto 1,000 square feet of concrete, and planted basil, lemon grass and tomatillos.

By Lavanya Ramanathan
Washington Post
September 4, 2015


I’m not a professional social worker or therapist, or whatever,” says Gail Taylor, who runs Three Part Harmony Farm, “but every year, incredible numbers of people come to our farm and heal themselves, just by putting their hands in the dirt.”

Before she found her own salvation in the soil, “I spent way too much time on Capitol Hill,” the 36-year-old former legislative director says in a way that must elicit sympathetic nods in this city full of people who have spent too much time on Capitol Hill.

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September 14, 2015   Comments Off on Urban Farms in Washington DC

Urban agriculture growing in popularity in West Virginia

WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

The West Virginia Urban Agriculture Conference will be held Sept. 17-19.

By Nicky Walters
Aug 20, 2015


There is a garden on Charleston’s West Side maintained by a group called West Virginia SAGE. The garden is made up of several raised beds. According to the most recent United States Department of Agriculture Census there are 956 small or urban farms in West Virginia. Agriculture leaders say that number has grown by an estimated 23 percent.

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August 29, 2015   Comments Off on Urban agriculture growing in popularity in West Virginia

Not just an urban garden in Arlington — an urban farm

Ryan Lee at his Arlington Farm. Photo by Cristin Wilson.

Customers will pay him $500 a year and, in return, they’ll get a basket of whatever fresh vegetables are available during the growing season.

By Cristin Wilson
Jacksonville Com
Aug 12, 2015


Ryan Lee lives in a comfortable University Park home in Arlington, surrounded by other houses.
Which is why visitors are surprised to see his farm. Not just a garden … a farm.

During spring growing season, he has all sorts of vegetable plants to tend. And starting this year, he has sold the bounty at a stand, a welcome offering to people who come upon it as they drive down University Club Boulevard. Everything is freshly picked — he picks on Saturdays and sells on Sundays It’s all organic. And it’s a strange site in a city neighborhood — a true urban farm.

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August 22, 2015   Comments Off on Not just an urban garden in Arlington — an urban farm

Farming Isn’t Just for the Country Anymore in North Omaha


Vandals dug up 15 dwarf fruit trees, “so that was a bit discouraging,” Callie said. But she’s not giving up.

WOWT News Omaha
Aug 7, 2015


North Omaha is showing signs of a new look. Abandoned and unsightly lots are being transformed into self-sustainable urban farms.

Calandra Ferguson Cooper may not look the part but she’s a USDA Registered Farmer. What makes her unique is that she farms in North Omaha.

She said, “I got tired of seeing all these vacant lots that were in North Omaha and I had an opportunity to buy some of the lots.”

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August 20, 2015   Comments Off on Farming Isn’t Just for the Country Anymore in North Omaha

East Portland Urban Farmer

Urban farmer Richard Dickinson sells vegetables at the Lent’s International Farmers Market in East Portland, Ore. (Photo Gosia Wozniacka/Associated Press)

He appreciates immigrants and the diverse foods, languages and customs they bring. He says neighborhood associations need to create places where everyone feels welcome.

By Gosia Wozniacka
Associated Press
July 27, 2015


Richard Dickinson has lived in East Portland since the 1990’s and saw firsthand the impact of unfettered growth and the city’s neglect. “It dissipated the whole social fabric of the area,” Dickinson said. Because the neighborhoods’ old rural character still remains — larger lots, towering Douglas Firs — Dickinson set out to re-build community through agriculture. He began farming on empty properties near his home, with the owners’ permission, and selling or giving away the bounty at a makeshift farm stand on his street.

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August 3, 2015   Comments Off on East Portland Urban Farmer

Governors Island adds to New York City’s growing urban farm scene

The Governors Island Teaching Garden provides a “seed to plate” curriculum. (Credit: Maggie O’Neill)

The garden grows 48 varieties of produce, as well as edible flowers that students can pick and eat at the flower bed.

By Maggie O’neill
AM New York
July 26, 2015


The Governors Island Teaching Garden is one of the latest urban farms to serve the NYC landscape, which already boasts farms on rooftops, in parks and at Randall’s Island.

A joint effort of GrowNYC and the Trust for Governors Island that was completed in May, the 8,000-square-foot garden is dedicated to educating children in New York about urban agriculture and healthy eating. It hosts public school visits and summer camp groups on weekdays from April through November, and it is open to the public for family visits on weekends during the island’s public season from May to September.

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August 2, 2015   Comments Off on Governors Island adds to New York City’s growing urban farm scene

North Memphis Urban Farmers need a tractor

Watch this compelling video. (Mike)

The tractor will help them continue to transform vacant lots in North Memphis’ most blighted neighborhoods and provide naturally grown local produce

Excerpts from their Kickstarter website:

The City of Memphis faces many challenges. Among them are blighted vacant lots, food deserts, health challenges, and unemployment. North Memphis Farmer’s Collective seeks to take these challenges and turn them into solutions by using what others see as waste as the fertilizer for vacant lots, thereby turning decay and blight into blossoming Urban Farms.

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July 30, 2015   Comments Off on North Memphis Urban Farmers need a tractor

Detroit urban farm aims to sell 20,000 pounds of vegetables

lawburlOne square block sits on the 1600 block of Lawrence Street.

“We have 400-500 catfish and blue gill growing in the fish pond”

By Jon Zemke
Model D
July 21, 2015


Link and Alex Bryan launched the urban farm in 2011 after purchasing a four-acre lot from the Michigan Land Bank. The one square block sits on the 1600 block of Lawrence Street. It previously served as the home Peck Elementary School before it was torn down.

Today Peck Produce, also known as Food Field, grows a wide variety of fruits and vegetables on the site, including leafy greens, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, ginger, artichokes, and parsnips. Last year the urban farm sold 16,000 pounds of produce.

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July 26, 2015   Comments Off on Detroit urban farm aims to sell 20,000 pounds of vegetables

Lafayette Greens spreads gospel of farming in Detroit

Lafayette Greens Co-ordinator Romondo Woods II of Detroit, tidies the garden on July 10. Lafayette Greens is an urban garden under the care of the Greening of Detroit and is situated in the center of downtown Detroit on Lafayette Boulevard at Shelby just a block off Campus Martius. (Photo: Donna Terek / The Detroit News)

“People our age should know how to harvest land because you never know what can happen where these skills can come in handy.”

By Kyla Smith,
The Detroit News
July 12, 2015


Nestled in the busy heart of downtown, Lafayette Greens has become more than simply a community garden.

More than a year after Greening of Detroit took over the gardens near Lafayette and American coney islands, it’s become something of a classroom and community meeting place. Along with 35 raised garden beds and benches, the hotspot along Lafayette Boulevard now hosts free evening classes on belly dancing, yoga, tai chi and gardening.

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July 21, 2015   Comments Off on Lafayette Greens spreads gospel of farming in Detroit

10 Detroit Urban Farms Rooting Goodness Into The City


Keep Growing Detroit, The Michigan Urban Farming, Brother Nature Produce Initiative, Brother Nature Produce, Fresh Cut Flower Farm, Spirit of Hope Farm, Oakland Avenue Community Farm, Earthworks, ACRE Community Farm, Freedom Freedom

By Stephanie Held
Daily Detroit
Jul 6, 2015


According to the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development, there are about 10 million acres of farmland in Michigan and the state is home to 52,194 farms.

As Detroit’s landscape has changed with depopulation, urban agriculture has sprung up in lots and fields across the city. Besides simply growing food, these are places to learn, teach, and spend quality time.

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July 16, 2015   Comments Off on 10 Detroit Urban Farms Rooting Goodness Into The City

MintPress Visits Detroiters Reclaiming The City’s Image

Kate Cramer-Herbst cleans out a vegetable box in Detroit, April 10, 2010. Detroit communities are transforming vacant, often-blighted land into a source of fresh food and place for community to come together. Click on image for larger file.

“Much more than agricultural, a spiritual change is taking place in the minds of the people.”

By Derrick Broze
Mint Press News
June 11, 2015


Since its inception as an offshoot of the Capuchin Soup Kitchen in 1997, Earthworks Urban Farm has blossomed into gardens spread throughout several lots, the EAT program and a growing list of volunteers. The farm, which supplies the soup kitchen, is run by a team volunteers who also educate the community about sustainable food practices.

Like many of the city’s urban farming and community gardening initiatives, Earthworks has started taking advantage of empty homes and lots, converting them into storage and planting spaces.

Detroiters have always taken care of themselves, Caprice Wood told MintPress. She added: “It might be new for the younger generation but the older generations have been doing this their whole life.”

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June 18, 2015   Comments Off on MintPress Visits Detroiters Reclaiming The City’s Image

In Houston, Young Urban Farmers Are Champions Of Change

FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

A company leased them the 1.2 acre vacant lot, and the pair transformed it into a farm for organic herbs, fruits and vegetables.

By Sally MacDonald
My Fox Houston
May 25, 2015


Texas has more farms than any other state, but most of farm country is getting older. The average age of a farmer is 58. Sally MacDonald reports on the recent increase in people under age 34 who are trying out their green thumbs with hopes of changing communities.

In the middle of Houston’s East End, sits what many see as Houston’s first private farm inside the 610 Loop.

Finca Tres Robles is Spanish for Three Oaks Farm.

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June 5, 2015   Comments Off on In Houston, Young Urban Farmers Are Champions Of Change