If you’ve wanted to start growing food but don’t have much space, the answer may be right in front of you — your front yard, that is. Front yard vegetable gardens are a growing trend. Nevertheless, some people don’t even consider growing food in the front yard because they think it might look messy or lead to neighbor complaints. Those folks should think again, says Natalie Carver, horticultural director for Love and Carrots, a company that designs, installs, and maintains urban vegetable gardens for homeowners throughout the Washington D.C. metro area.
Whether you’re an experienced gardener or are just getting started, technology is trying to improve on age-old techniques of growing food. We like to think Sustainable America is part of this trend with Shared Earth, a website that helps match up would-be gardeners with people who have land to share. You can use it to find a plot to garden — or someone to garden on your land. Ready to plant? Check out these tech solutions to common gardening challenges.
Are you planning to have a garden this year? Maybe a better question is, are you able to have a garden this year? Interest in growing food has exploded in the last decade, but getting your own plot of tomatoes or cukes going may seem impossible if you lack enough outdoor space or don’t know how to garden. Learn how millions of people are solving this problem through garden sharing.
Over the last few months, we’ve been experimenting with a menagerie of indoor food-growing systems at our office: a vertical garden, a hydroponic system and an aquaponic system. While the versions we’ve installed won’t revolutionize the local food landscape in our neighborhood, if scaled up, these alternative growing methods have the potential to help urban areas meet the growing demand for food. We wanted to get hands-on with a few of these methods to learn more and to provide a showcase of what’s possible. Here’s how we did…
For Earth Day this year, we Sustainable America staff members challenged ourselves to work on ways to be greener in our everyday lives. First up is Gray, our director of investments, who said he was going to grow food in containers and compost at home. Here’s how he did…
As a high school health and PE teacher for the past 16 years, Stephanie Peckham has heard a lot of interesting stories and questions from her students. Questions run the gamut, with curious and not-yet-worldly students seeking answers about alcohol, drugs and cigarettes, to awkward birds and bees questions. But with the surge in childhood obesity and diabetes, Stephanie has found herself in the figurative epicenter of a battle to educate this generation of young Americans about the critical importance of eating healthy.
‘Tis the season for trend lists as everyone tries to predict the next big thing for the year ahead. We’ve culled through the lists to compile our own tally of trends that relate to the issues Sustainable America supports: sustainable food and fuel. The good news is that finding encouraging trend predictions was easy—now let’s work together to make them come true!
Did you know there are 10 million acres of front and back yards in America—enough to produce 43.5 million tons of food—but only 35 percent of U.S. households grew food in 2012? Growing where you are gives people the power to eat healthier and revitalize their communities, but many gardeners lack the land they need, and those with the land don’t always know what to do with it.
After our recent interview with Dan Susman about Growing Cities, his new documentary about urban farming, we were inspired to translate the movie’s core message—”Grow where you are!”—into a digestible guide. Whether it’s planting a windowsill garden, joining a community garden or even building a backyard chicken coop, there are numerous ways to move from relying on factory farms to growing food for yourself and your community, even in a big city.
Recently we had the pleasure of speaking with Dan Susman, director and producer of the new documentary Growing Cities. The film follows Dan and his co-producer Andrew Monbouquette across the United States as they examine the growing urban farming movement. The Nebraska natives visited a total of 80 farms in vacant lots, rooftops, and backyards and interviewed the passionate people from all walks of life who tend them. Along the way, they learned a lot about community, food justice, and eating urban squirrels (spoiler: try at your own risk).