How to be an urban farmer

How to be an urban farmer

Tired of wondering which fruits and veggies were grown with pesticides, if the chickens were really treated humanely, and how far those apples had to travel to get to your cart? City dweller Novella Carpenter was and took matters into her own hands. Organic Connections, the magazine for Natural Vitality, reports.

While most city and suburb dwellers despair over their lack of available farmland for growing produce or raising livestock, one innovative locavore bypassed the conventional Kelly green lawn for a more sustainable backyard. Novella Carpenter, a resident of downtown Oakland, California,  succeeded in transforming her relatively small urban property into a “farmlette”—complete with chickens, vegetables and fruit trees, and pigs.

Co-author of The Essential Urban Farmer (Penguin, 2011), Carpenter offers tips on how to become a homesteader in modern times. “Start with foods you like and that are easy to grow,” advises Carpenter in an interview with Organic Connections. “A lot of first-time gardeners start with things that sound healthy but that they don’t eat, like kale,” she says. “Then they grow it but don’t like it.” A salad mix makes for the perfect yard crop. “A mix with mesclun and other greens, sown very closely together, makes a beautiful carpet and it will really blow your mind how good it tastes.”

Read more in Organic Connections.

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