Overview

People have always grown food in urban spaces—on windowsills and sidewalks, and in backyards and neighborhood parks—but today, urban farmers are leading an environmental and social movement that transforms our national food system. To explore this agricultural renaissance, brothers David and Michael Hanson and urban farmer Edwin Marty document twelve successful urban farm programs, from an alternative school for girls in Detroit, to a backyard food swap in New Orleans, to a restaurant supply garden on a rooftop ...
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Breaking Through Concrete: Building an Urban Farm Revival

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Overview

People have always grown food in urban spaces—on windowsills and sidewalks, and in backyards and neighborhood parks—but today, urban farmers are leading an environmental and social movement that transforms our national food system. To explore this agricultural renaissance, brothers David and Michael Hanson and urban farmer Edwin Marty document twelve successful urban farm programs, from an alternative school for girls in Detroit, to a backyard food swap in New Orleans, to a restaurant supply garden on a rooftop in Brooklyn. Each beautifully illustrated essay offers practical advice for budding farmers, such as composting and keeping livestock in the city, decontaminating toxic soil, even changing zoning laws.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
This is urban American agriculture as road trip. Brothers David (a freelance journalist) and Michael (a freelance photographer) Hanson, together with Marty, founder of the nonprofit Jones Valley Farm in downtown Birmingham, AL, traveled cross-country to 12 urban gardens, starting in Seattle and ending in Illinois. Featured projects include a Santa Cruz garden tended by the homeless, a New Orleans congregational garden run by Vietnamese immigrants, and a Detroit teaching farm for teenage mothers. Short essays describe each site as do many enticing photographs; chapters end with how-to guides. Fundamentally, these gardens are about rebuilding the local link between food production and consumption. All are bound up with social action, be it improving lives, teaching about healthy food, or revitalizing brownfields, but a few are moving beyond philanthropy into profit-generating enterprises. VERDICT Gardeners and foodies may be inspired by this book to hit the road themselves and visit some of the urban oases described. Even better, some may stay home, follow the book's good advice, and cultivate their own food garden.—R. Eagan, Windsor P.L., Ont.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780520949713
  • Publisher: University of California Press
  • Publication date: 1/30/2012
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 200
  • File size: 36 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author

David Hanson is a freelance writer and photographer. Edwin Marty is founder of Jones Valley Urban Farm in Birmingham, Alabama. Michael Hanson is an award-winning travel photographer. Mark Winne is the author of Food Rebels, Guerrilla Gardeners and Smart-Cookin’ Mamas: Fighting Back in an Age of Industrial Agriculture.
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Table of Contents

Foreword by Mark Winne
Preface by David Hanson
Introduction by Edwin Marty

1. P-Patch Community Garden Program, Seattle, Washington • The Neighborhood Garden
HOW TO: Change Your City’s Urban Agriculture Zoning Codes

2. Homeless Garden Project, Santa Cruz, California • The Farm as Therapy
HOW TO: Grow Good, Safe Food

3. Fairview Gardens and the Center for Urban Agriculture, Santa Barbara, California • The Historic Farm
HOW TO: Plant Perennial Fruit Trees in the City

4. Denver Urban Gardens, Denver, Colorado • The Garden as Community
HOW TO: Turn Your Waste into Black Gold Compost

5. Kansas City Center for Urban Agriculture, Kansas City, Kansas and Missouri • The Farm for Profit
HOW TO: Access Start-Up Capital for Urban Food Projects

6. Versailles Community, New Orleans, Louisiana • Backyards of Bounty
HOW TO: Develop a Congregational Urban Farm

7. Jones Valley Urban Farm, Birmingham, Alabama • The Education and Production Farm
HOW TO: Engage the Community with Education Programs

8. Greensgrow, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania • The Nonprofit, For-Profit Farm
HOW TO: Rehabilitate Contaminated Soils

9. Eagle Street Rooftop Farm, Brooklyn, New York • The Rooftop Farm
HOW TO: Convert Rooftops to Residential Gardens and Urban Farms

10. Catherine Ferguson Academy, Detroit, Michigan • The Alternative Curriculum Farm
HOW TO: Raise Urban Livestock

11. Growing Home’s Wood Street Urban Farm, Chicago, Illinois • The Job Training Farm
HOW TO: Extend the Growing Season with Hoop Houses and Greenhouses

12. Sandhill Organics and Prairie Crossing, Grayslake, Illinois • The Peri-urban Farm
HOW TO: Start an Urban Farm

Conclusion by Edwin Marty
Acknowledgments
Bibliography
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