Facts on Urban Farming!

Urban farming has become very popular in the last few years. Growing food in heavily populated municipalities is becoming mainstream. Large cities often boast several urban gardens and farms and some may also have community gardens.

What differentiates an urban farm from a community garden or urban garden?

The urban farm actually sells their produce either to local restaurants or at farmer’s markets while community gardens and those in the backyard of a city lot are for consumption of the people that keep the garden maintained. Urban farms can also grow food that will be given away to a soup kitchen or at a food pantry. The food is grown and exchanged in some form of commerce to another person or entity.

Urban gardens appear on vacant lots, on rooftops or in brownfields; wherever there is a little bit of space on which to grow plants. Many times these little plots of farming land are self-sufficient. Continue reading

Using Grow Lights to Start Seedlings!

Grow lights are an essential gardening tool when starting seeds indoors during the last part of winter and early spring. The sun’s rays are not strong enough in the Northern Hemisphere to allow seeds to germinate and grow inside.

Seeds require light to germinate and put forth stems and leaves. Properly installed and used lights enable seeds to develop into strong plants that are planted outside at the earliest time in order to capitalize on the growing season.

Once the seed germinates and breaks through the seed casing, the stem and leaf pushes up through the soil. Once it gets there, the energy has been depleted and it needs a source of energy, which is the sun or light. If they do not receive enough light, they remain weak and are susceptible to fungi and other diseases. Continue reading

Rooftop Garden Basics!

Rooftop gardens are a great alternative to having a yard and garden or having a balcony filled with pots. In many cases a rooftop garden insulates the roof and helps the roof reduce storm run-off that can damage siding and gutters. Rooftops are often left bare and are a big waste of space. A green roof can be efficient and produce food for the family.

Local Laws and Permissions.

Many urban municipalities have laws or ordinances that might apply to rooftop gardens. Always check with city hall before installing a rooftop garden. Those that rent or have home owner associations should also check to make sure there are no regulations on gardening on a rooftop. Continue reading