A Statement About GCG's Response to COVID-19 Learn More
Already have a backyard urban farm, but curious about more ways to provide more local, fresh food for your family or even neighbors? Here are some ideas so you can continue to transform your backyard into a vibrant, productive space and reduce your carbon footprint at the same time!
Bees are an invaluable part of nature and the main contributors to agricultural crops. Here’s a crazy stat: one in three bites of food we eat comes from crops pollinated by bees. But their populations are plummeting at increasingly rapid rates from the pesticides that come along with monoculture agriculture. So, start your own backyard beekeeping and help the bee population rebound, not to mention you’ll be producing your own honey too. Other ways you can help the bees are by eliminating the use of pesticides, plant bee friendly plants and flowers, and buy organic to support bee friendly forage.
“If the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe, then man would have only four years of life left. No more bees, no more pollination, no more plants, no more animals, no more man.”
Maybe your neighbors don’t have the space for their own backyard garden but you do. Expand your raised bed garden and get your neighbors to join in. A neighborhood CSA will provide you with fresh, local produce for you and your neighbors while also keeping your carbon footprint lower than most.
Vermiculture is the cultivation of earth worms as a means of composting. Did you know that worms can turn common soil into soil with much more superior quality? And it’s also pretty cost effective. The worms break down organic matter, like food scraps, and then leave behind castings that are a valuable fertilizer. So start a worm bin, throw in your unusable organic matter and watch the worms turn the food scraps into nutrient rich soil for your garden.
You usually buy eggs at the grocery store or farmers market but you can have your own fresh, hyper-local eggs laid by your backyard chickens. Green City Growers offers a backyard chicken coop installation and if you don’t have the time for the maintenance or want to learn more about keeping your own chickens GCG provides services and education for that too.
Other than the benefit of having your own fresh eggs, chickens also provide a great fertilizer. So let them roam your garden to turn it into a more lush, productive space. They will also happily eat left overs or food scraps like vegetables, fruits, breads and a ton of other common household foods. This will decrease the amount of food you dispose that ends up in municipal landfills every year (about 35 million tons).