This week I thought I’d cover some urban farming. This is primarily for those Bardians thinking about their future places of residence. It’s also grounds for imagining what our world beyond Bard can potentially look like.
In 1790, of the total US population (3,929,214), ninety percent of the labor force were farmers (“Historical Timeline – Farmers and the Land”, 2014). Now, farmers are less than 1 percent of “wage and salary workers” (“United States Dept. of Ag: Background”, 2016). It is not a surprise that with three steps forward, and two steps back, we are reclaiming our spaces with agriculture in this post-industrial period – not to say that farming is in any way a step back.
Urban farms are also great for other reasons. They can divert people’s time and energy from the gym to producing fresh local food. A sort of carbon sequestration. Moreover, the beauty and life that gardens produce are externalities that are sorely missing from many urban areas.
Now to my article. 6 urban farms. Each one unique and interesting. I’ll talk specifically about one – Detroit’s “agrihood”. A 3 acre piece of land with a 2-acre garden, a children’s sensory garden, a 200-tree fruit orchard and an up and coming community resource center.
The garden serves “free produce” to 2,000 residents within 2 square miles of the farm.
Check out the farm – I like this photo, especially:
Above, the grass reminds me of the level, flat ground that seems inevitably stuck being unused in so many urban areas. To think that food can grow from such a surface is hard for me to believe. However…
…they’re doing it. The farm looks great – the soil loose. Once you start moving it – cultivating it, soil is an amazing thing.
Don’t give up on urban farming, anyone. I’d be down to live in an “agrihood” – would you?