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Urban Farming/Gardening Project

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Urban Farming/Gardening Project

There is a great need to develop more sustainable communityfarming/ gardening practices within urban areas to feed the most needy. In this group we are looking for land preservation strategies for community farms.

Location: Fort Wayne
Members: 48
Latest Activity: Jul 23, 2013

Discussion Forum

Self built homes 2 Replies

Started by J Benabou. Last reply by J Benabou Feb 10, 2012.

Hunger in Indiana, America 9 Replies

Started by Ellen. Last reply by Ellen Jun 16, 2011.

Amish=organic? 4 Replies

Started by Ellen. Last reply by Ellen Dec 23, 2010.

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Comment by Ellen on September 9, 2012 at 10:12am

We are wrapping up harvesting at the farm, that is, Andrew, and I are harvesting the potatoes, okra on our plot.

All in all, this 7 acre community farm has been a disaster for, well, the communities family farmers at this site, except for 'the club' of guys supposedly managing this farm, that have done a piss poor job of managing the community part, but not the part where they are growing conventionally(for themselves), on 2-4 acres,  commodity okra, cowpeas to sell at market. 

The majority  of diverse vegetables/fruits have been abandonded to 4 foot high  weeds on the 4 acre community part of family plots. Part of it is due to weather, lack of water earlier, lack of equipment, lack of volunteers, but mostly due to poor management, no guidance, because the families farming there have really tried to cope over the seasons. And you wonder why the groups of Burmese, Africans, Laotians. etc., have not returned.......

Another issue Andrew, and I have concerns about is the practices of the conventional farmers planting close to this urban farm. We are growing organically, I do not know about Ephraim and his 'club' anymore, but Andrew and I are. We are worried about  chemical drift from conventional farms, close by, and up to 2 miles away.

If anyone has been listening to AgTalk there is lots of chatter about synthetic chemicals. Farmers are grasping for, and resorting to any, and every chemical they can get their hands on. There seems to be a shortage of the most popular brands, due to drought making weeds more resilient, and therefore harder to eradicate, leading to an increased number of chemical dosages sprayed.

Certain 'weeds' have also become 'superweeds'  evolving over the past 30+ years. Indiana has said there is not a problem, yet, in this state, but according to AgTalk farmers ARE resorting to using 2,4D again, and mixing 2,4D with Roundup, other chemicals, at Indiana farms.

Vegetable farmers are in trouble in this state when growing next to corn, soy, grain farmers, just talk to the tomato farmers. 

http://talk.newagtalk.com/forums/thread-view.asp?tid=324133&mid...

Comment by Ellen on August 28, 2012 at 8:39am

Got figs Indiana?  Great tasting figs, grown right here in northern Indiana.....sure beats a fig newton. 

Comment by Ellen on July 17, 2012 at 12:32pm

Interesting post on non-profits getting creative during this drought.....but the story does not tell us how  the non-profits are being creative,   lol..... other than draining the neighbors pond.

http://www.wthr.com/story/19028271/nonprofit-farms-get-creative-as-...

 On our home farm we have been using shade covers, and we decided to use them at the farm....seems to be working, abeit the plants are stunted(at the farm)....getting mini okra though, and other minis.

Comment by Ellen on June 14, 2012 at 1:04pm

Six weeks, and counting, no rain. People, water your trees, and shrubs, if possible.

Serpentine garlic(not elephant garlic) is about ready to harvest. There are fields of bottle waterers at the farm keeping things  sprouting, growing, slooooowly.

Comment by Ellen on June 4, 2012 at 11:04am

Update.....

We are getting a small reprieve from the hot temps, but not from the drought. Ephraim, I know, does not want to hear about the lack of rain, or water  at the farm, hey....he is from Alabama, and is used to planting thousands of acres in drier conditions of black peas, okra.

We had no delusions about drought here in Indiana, just did not expect it so soon. Potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, okra, black peas, amaranth, radishes, cabbage, at the farm, planted with tons of mulch, doing well. Of course the  beans, sugar snaps, greens, corn, are not doing so well. All squash/melons have been planted, and have self waterers this year.....a system of up-ended filled water bottles with a few holes in the cap. Ephraim decided to give this a try....whereas Andrew, and I wanted to drill a small well, since there is a wetland spot smack dab in the middle of the farm, dried up on the surface  of course from the drought.

http://www.drillyourownwell.com/

On our personal home plot..... with a controlled water source, sugar snaps did great, fava not so great, elephant garlic has been fascinating to watch grow(going to plant lots more in Oct.). Greens are really  happy in a hoop house this year.

Comment by Katrina Oakley on May 3, 2012 at 2:52pm

Oh Ellen! that's just beautiful!

Comment by Ellen on May 3, 2012 at 2:24pm

Fava is blooming.....yay!!!! Hope this heat wave doesn't discourage them.

Comment by Ellen on May 3, 2012 at 2:22pm

Comment by Katrina Oakley on April 30, 2012 at 10:05am

I just did a blog post here for teaching kids rainwater harvesting.

Not sure why your fruit is getting so big, our peaches are still just lil tiny green dots. but looking healthy just the same. I love peaches too. Don't really care how big or small they get, you sure can't beat the taste of a fresh peach! MMMMMM

Comment by Ellen on April 30, 2012 at 9:54am

OK....will do Katrina. It is a good investment for our home garden spaces, not the farm. There is no spigot, or water source there. So whatever the farmers plant at the farm has to be planted with lots of humus to retain moisture, through another possible drought, or plant  more drought resistant vegetables It is difficult to convey this to certain farm groups such as the Burmese, Laotians, they do not understand drought, the soil , how to be proactive with mulch/humus, or haul water in when needed. The Africans on the other hand understand fully.

Trying to incorporate more fruits at the farm, then again, water is an issue, means more work, more water.

Ummm.....peaches, hope you get lots this year. Our personal fruit trees are loaded with fruit also.....think they only lost topmost fruits. The apricots are getting huge already.....what's going on to make them so big, so early???

 

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