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Category — Vancouver

Inner city kale on the rise! Urban farmers in BC transforming yards

beetsis
Katie Ralphs and Ruth Warren.

Katie Ralphs and Ruth Warren are the women behind City Beet, an urban farm in Vancouver that grows 50 different crops on 14 yards

By Christina Turner
Rabble.Ca
April 10, 2014

Excerpt:

City Beet’s practices demonstrate, almost to an extreme, how environmentally friendly urban farming can be. They grow all of their produce in the same 10-block radius, get around by bike and members pick up their weekly produce share at a local café.

Ralphs admits that she and Warren struggle with the question of food accessibility. Local food is expensive and remains out of reach for many, especially in a stratified city like Vancouver. “We only really interact with people who can afford to join our CSA or own a house that we can farm on,” Ralphs says.

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April 22, 2014   No Comments

Vancouver’s new Victory Gardeners transform Vancouver’s backyards and rooftop

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At Victory Gardens, Samantha Phillips, Sandra Lopuch and Lisa Giroday are helping to transform Vancouver’s backyards and rooftops into gardens that provide residents and businesses with their own vegetables. Photo by Rob Newell.

Victory Gardens harkens back to the days when people did their patriotic duty by growing their own food

By Martha Perkins
Westender
April 9, 2014

Excerpt:

So the three friends decided to start their own gardening business and called it Victory Gardens. Not only do they hire themselves out to create gardens — they just established a rooftop garden at HootSuite’s headquarters and one for Acorn, the vegetarian restaurant — but they also host workshops and seminars on growing your own vegetables.

Winning the $25,000 prize from the Co-operators’ National Co-op Challenge will help them spread the message even further. They’re using the money to produce an educational series of YouTube videos that show people how to create and nurture their own urban vegetable gardens.

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April 14, 2014   No Comments

Urban farming: full-time careers and a farm too

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Raena and Rob Blusson balance their careers in Vancouver with farm life in the suburbs. Photo by Kelsey Klassen.

Raena and Rob Blusson both have full-time jobs in Vancouver, yet begin and end each day on their working 10-acre farm in Maple Ridge

Kelsey Klassen
Westender
April 9, 2014

Excerpt:

For one Vancouver couple, the concept of farm-to-table didn’t exactly translate to dining at Fable a few nights each month.

In 2011, Raena and Rob Blusson made their urban farming dream a reality — purchasing a 10-acre plot of land in Maple Ridge while living and working downtown.

Three years later, the duo now wakes up every morning in Maple Ridge, tends to the animals and chores, and then rides the West Coast Express into the heart of Vancouver to continue their full-time careers in the mining sector.

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April 11, 2014   No Comments

New Vancouver development includes courtyard community garden beds

canvasonniClick on image for larger file.

Canvas will comprise two buildings on either side of a landscaped courtyard with garden plots, a fire pit and a long communal picnic table to encourage socializing.

By Felicity Stone
Vancouver Sun
March 17, 2014

Excerpt:

Jensen expects the Canvas homes will appeal to Emily Carr students and faculty, first-time buyers and investors serving the rental market. “The market actually reminds us of a similar buying opportunity on Main at Sixth and Seventh, a project of ours called Social,” he says. “It’s much more affordable than downtown, there’s some opportunities in the market, and just more and more people moving to the neighbourhood.”

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March 25, 2014   Comments Off

Vancouver Urban farm co-op to deliver food from farm to desk

farmcity

Weekly baskets will feature fruit, veg, flowers and honey

By Randy Shore
Vancouver Sun
March 16, 2014

Excerpt:

Nine local urban and peri-urban farms — ranging from just one-third of an acre up to seven acres — have formed a business co-operative and plan to operate a pooled warehouse and distribution system. By using hired staff to prep, package and deliver their products, the farmers will be able to double their production, according to farmer Emi Do.

FarmCity Co-op’s new business model will serve 300 food basket customers through the growing season and should gross close to $250,000, up from a collective $75,000 last year. The group received a $25,000 grant from the Vancity enviroFund to implement their plan.

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March 17, 2014   Comments Off

Vancouver’s TreeKeepers program wants to become the biggest collective urban orchard in North America

The trees, all on dwarf root stock, are heavily discounted at only $10 each

Apples: Ginger Gold Apple, Liberty Apple, Cameo Apple, Red Jonaprince Apple, Crimson Gala Apple

Plums: Santa Rosa Plum, Early Italian Plum,

Figs: Brown Turkey Fig, Desert King Fig, Peter’s Honey Fig

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March 4, 2014   Comments Off

12th and final “Meet your Vancouver Urban Farmer” – Jordan from Southlands Heritage Farm.

Support your local urban farmers (and local rural farmers of course), and know where your food comes from.

By Vita Mavronicolas, Digital Storyteller
Shaun Mavronicolas
Fire and Light Media Group
July, 2013

Southlands Heritage Farm is a unique nature and agricultural reserve in Vancouver that most people are surprised to learn exists! They offer a number of camps, programs and workshops for youth right in the city as well as a weekly farmers market.

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February 26, 2014   Comments Off

‘Lonely Planet Vancouver’ features ‘Vancouver’s Compost Demonstration Garden’ in latest edition

lonely

6th Edition of the ‘Vancouver Lonely Planet’

By John Lee
Lonely Planet
Release Date: Feb. 1 2014

City Farmer Society has managed the Compost Garden at 2150 Maple Street since 1981 when it began as a demonstration organic food garden. Since then we have welcomed many thousands of visitors. Our latest project is a ‘Climate Change Adaptation Garden’ on the site. (Mike)

Excerpt from Lonely Planet guidebook:

“Don’t be put off by the name: this verdant city garden is an oasis among the backstreets of Kits. A rustic plot with a cob shed, compost toilet and wild and cultivated areas of flowers and vegetables, it’s a great place for gardeners to visit.

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February 20, 2014   Comments Off

Failure of high-tech rooftop greenhouse in Vancouver leaves $4-million trail of debt

roofvancbank
Len McDonald works among the growing trays at Vancouver’s Alterrus rooftop greenhouse.

By Randy Shore
Vancouver Sun
January 27, 2014

Excerpt:

The failure of the Alterrus rooftop greenhouse has left investors and creditors holding the bag for about $4 million and the city’s parking corporation EasyPark out of pocket for at least $13,104 in unpaid rent.

EasyPark’s liability could rise if the company is forced to remove the high-tech enclosure and mechanized vertical growing systems left on a downtown parking garage by the bankruptcy of Alterrus and its operating partner and marketing arm Local Garden Vancouver.

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January 28, 2014   Comments Off

Vancouver community garden integrated around existing tennis courts

riversite
Click on image for larger file.

Vancouver approves community garden proposal for Riverfront Park

The Fraserlands Community Gardening Group and the South Vancouver Family Place Society have developed a proposal for a new community garden in Riverfront Park in Fraserview.
Proposed garden features
The initial concept for the garden includes the following amenities:
Garden integrated around the existing tennis courts
40 community garden plots
Wheelchair-accessible flower beds
Fruit trees

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January 27, 2014   Comments Off

1939 Community Garden in Vancouver, BC: Good-Will Flourishes in Farmer-Citizens’ ‘Field’

filedspicsA back-to-the-land movement that has worked successfully for the past seven years is the Hastings East Community Farm, shown above. Upper left, a few of the 86 farmer-citizens who cultivate the eight-acre farm are shown in front of their tool-shed and meeting place. Upper right, Bill Graw, youngest member of the “field,” weeds a flower bed. Middle left, Wendell Bauman, who learned to farm near Odessa, stands among some of the farm’s seed rye. Next, Alex Devito, a native of Italy, shows off his prized garden peas. Middle right, Devito happily hoes his garden patch. Lower left, Y. Radonich, Montenegran, is shown working in his promising corn patch, while right, “Charlie” Mictchell, 76, oldest member of the “Field,” hoes his potatoes with the assistance of Bert Perfitt. Click on image for larger version.

Community Farmers Find Health, Happiness in Garden Project 4 Miles City’s Centre

By Ken Grant
Vancouver Sun
July 8, 1939

On a sunny slope four miles from the heart of Vancouver’s business section, 86 tanned farmer citizens are quietly working out their own back-to-the-land scheme for adding fresh vegetables to their none-too-large incomes or relief allowances.

Their eight acres of land adjoining the Old People’s Home are officially referred to as the Hastings East Community Farm, but to the 80 odd families who have taken part in the scheme for the past seven years, the land is simply known as “The Field.”

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January 21, 2014   Comments Off

Vancouver now has more than 4,100 community garden plots, 12 farmers markets

youngpeop
Lissa Goldstein of Sole Food, Sara Dent of Young Agrarians, and Chris Reid of Shifting Growth are three of the many young Vancouverites who are transforming the City. Photo by Michael Levenston.

City on track to exceed its greenest-city goals

By Randy Shore
Vancouver Sun
January 2, 2014

Excerpt:

Vancouver continues to make progress toward the goals set in the Greenest City Action Plan, adding more than 400 community garden plots and opening two new farmers markets in the past year.

With more than 4,166 garden plots established on city-owned and privately held land to date, Vancouver is on pace to meet its objective to create 5,000 plots five years early. The plan set a goal of doubling the city’s neighbourhood food assets by 2020.

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January 11, 2014   Comments Off

Food gardens and mini-farms sprouting up at schools in Delta, British Columbia

girlshovel

Every one of the 31 schools in the Delta school district will have a garden, urban agriculture instalment, or a full-blown mini-farm by the end of the school year in June

By Randy Shore
Vancouver Sun
Dec 30, 2013

Excerpt:

The district is providing $2,500 a month to fund Project Pickle, but a search is underway for corporate sponsors to take the financial pressure off the district, said Turner.

“As it grows, we will have to find ways to pay for it,” she said. “We haven’t got there yet, but it’s growing so fast.”

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January 5, 2014   Comments Off

Fresh Roots of Vancouver named a ‘Food Leader’ by the Real Estate Foundation of BC.

Transforming Schoolgrounds

The Real Estate Foundation of BC
Nov 1, 2013

Excerpt:

Vancouver’s Fresh Roots Urban Farm Society has come up with a solution to the problem of accessing land for its market gardens. That solution is turning heads, filling bellies and educating communities.

It is particularly difficult to find parcels of a quarter acre or larger for growing food in the city, and since land access is a significant barrier to expanding urban agriculture in Vancouver – and other metropolitan areas – the Fresh Roots model is a welcome success.

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December 10, 2013   Comments Off

East Vancouver community garden torn up in apparent dispute

pipethistle
A pile of torn up irrigation is seen at the Purple Thistle Urban Garden in East Vancouver.

City of Vancouver engineer Jerry Dobrovolny said it appeared the group did go beyond city property and on to the private property – which may explain why the relationship between the gardeners and the property owner soured.

CTV British Columbia
November 30, 2013

Excerpt:

A group of young gardeners is heartbroken after somebody destroyed their urban “food forest” in East Vancouver.

The Purple Thistle Food Forest, an urban garden in the city’s Downtown Eastside that provides fresh produce for the less fortunate, is now just a long bare patch of ground with one lone berry plan still in its box, and a torn-up irrigation system.

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December 9, 2013   Comments Off