Tag Archives: blight to farms

Black Beekeepers Transform Detroit’s Abandoned Lots Into Bee Farms

PC Detroit Hives

“I went to the local market that I normally go to, and he suggested that I try some local honey for my cough,” Paule said. “He said you consume local honey because it has medicinal properties.”

“The couple began to think about how urban blight contributed to allergies through overgrown ragweeds in abandoned areas.” According to the report, “they put producing local honey and erasing urban blight together, and Detroit Hives was born.”

Source: Black Beekeepers Transform Detroit’s Abandoned Lots Into Bee Farms

Converting Urban Blight Into Urban Farms | Conducive Chronicle

Urban blight is dismal, disheartening and depressing. Not to mention ripe for takeover by criminal elements. Buildings that once were proud centers of commerce devolve into soulless plots of overgrown grass, graffiti and broken glass.

Rochester, New York has more than its share of urban blight within its borders, but that soon may change. A large number of abandoned buildings and empty lots lie scattered throughout the northwest inner ring just outside the downtown core, along with abandoned subway and canal beds. Sadly, this urban blight walks hand in hand with one of the highest child poverty rates in the United States.

Sustainable Intelligence LLC wants to change all this. The Rochester City Council has just voted to hire Sustainable Intelligence to develop a plan to turn abandoned properties into urban gardens and farms. Sustainable Intelligence intends to include strategies specific to Rochester’s northern climate in its plan and assist with an urban agriculture initiative once the plan wins Council approval. U.S. Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) is pushing for federal support of a plan that would send nine AmeriCorps members to Rochester to help.

The canal bed alone contains eight acres of uncontaminated dirt that can be converted into high yield agricultural soil with the addition of nutrient rich compost. A local foodbank is researching ways to turn its spoiled food into compost for use in urban agriculture projects. The hope is that these gardens and farms will produce low cost food for poverty stricken families and encourage the renovation of abandoned storefronts into neighborhood markets to sell the food.

Urban farming has the potential of turning the cycle of poverty around. Low income families will have access to nutritious food that will sustain children during long school days and increase their chances of success through the elimination of hunger. The markets themselves will provide much-needed jobs and revitalize neighborhoods. Revitalized neighborhoods beautify the city and restore community pride. Everybody wins.

via Converting Urban Blight Into Urban Farms | Conducive Chronicle.

Indoor and Urban Blight Farming « phantasypublishing

A City Tale: From Mighty Industrial Metropolis to Urban Blight to Idyllic Farms

Urban Farmings

In Detroit, where square miles of blighted urban lots are commonplace today, one entrepreneur launched a company to buy lots, clean them up, and convert them into luscious urban farms for profit. A Michigan State University report thinks it’s an idea worth pursuing:

“As city officials ponder proposals for urban farms, a Michigan State University study indicates that a combination of urban farms, community gardens, storage facilities, and hoop houses – greenhouses used to extend the growing season – could supply local residents with more than 75 percent of their vegetables and more than 40 percent of their fruits.”

A third of the land in the city of Detroit is vacant, and much of it is city-owned due to non-payment of property taxes. Hantz Farms is strategically investing $30 million to control up to 10,000 acres where they’ll work the land and keep it open to the public – it will be kept part of the community and neighbors can walk or ride their bike through the lots.

Urban farming on abandoned lots or on city rooftops is spreading around the world and happening in communities in New York, Chicago and more. In fact, Hantz Farms is routinely contacted by groups looking for guidance and education to replicate the process in their own cities.

Nonprofit Food Pantries: Start Farms, Teach Farming…

Leads to a Healthy Community

In a small 250 square foot indoor farm the Child Development Support Corp. (a New York City food pantry) grows enough fresh greens to feed hundreds of families each week!

As with many examples where people take personal responsibility, they tend to make decisions that provide better and longer lasting solutions.

The families at this food pantry have a renewed sense of ownership, and have access to fresh, nutritionally dense foods. Plus, the food pantry hosts regular workshops and training sessions on how to grow food at home.

“People feel very passionate about this farm; they’re eating better… They come with a different attitude; it’s all about healthy eating,” said Mireille Massac, who runs the food pantry and farm.

Other area food pantries are learning from their experience and planning to start their own indoor farms as well.

via Indoor and Urban Blight Farming « phantasypublishing.