Can Urban Farms Be Sanctuaries for Bees?

By Rachel Nehemiah Of all pollinators, bees account for the greatest amount of pollination: about 80-90 percent worldwide. And we can thank bees for about one third of our crops too – things like onions, broccoli, chilli peppers, watermelons and pumpkins rely on bees for pollination. Being so important, not only to the world as…

Proctor Academy & Educational Urban Farms

Seoul, Vancouver, Boston, New York: I spent the majority my life in cities. I feel more comfortable around grey skyscrapers and speeding taxi cabs, than bugs, wild animals, and evergreen trees. Perhaps you can imagine my surprise when I started at Proctor Academy, a small, experiential boarding school in Andover, New Hampshire — out of…

In Appreciation of Cover Crops: Plants that do Work for Us!

I don’t remember when I first heard the term “cover cropping,” but I know it was a while after I developed a serious interest in gardening and farming. An ongoing curiosity concerning the growth and care of plants has resulted in my working in the horticulture department of a zoo, as an employee of a…

What’s Dirt Got to Do With It?

I love dirt. Dirt is important to me. When I was six my sister refused to let me sit on her bed because apparently there was dirt in my hair (there was). It didn’t really bother me though because the time I spent outside, investigating each blade of grass and each creepy crawler, was worth…

From Communes to Cabs

When I first arrived at the NYU Urban Farm, I was quickly struck by one thing in particular- how orderly everything seemed to be. My only previous experience in agriculture had been at a permaculture-style farm community called Gaia Yoga Gardens on the Big Island of Hawaii. Needless to say, the farming practices and were…

Organic Farming Could Get Even Easier

Urban agriculture is hard work— I found that out first hand the first time I wielded a pitchfork to turn compost as farm manager of the NYU Farm Lab— so one can imagine why conventional farming practices involve the use of pesticides to make a farmer’s life easier. As you may know, pesticides are substances used…

Going Back to My Roots

Farming the Sustainable Way From the Mediterranean Coast to the Urban Campus By Julia K. Haramis, @nutritionista, http://www.nycnutritionista.com When I first entered the NYU Urban Farm Lab for my Introduction to Urban Agriculture class I was surprised by the sentimental emotions that hit me – it was a combination of feeling like things had come full…

Food Preservation: The Way of the Past and the Wave of the Future

By Clare Hyre Canning, freezing, dehydrating, fermenting – these are all components of the great art of food preservation. But preservation was just something our grandmothers or even great grandmothers did, right? Not anymore! Countless numbers of books and articles have been written on preservation, just check out the New York Times for daily canning…

Linking Local Farming to the Lives of NYU Students

Jake Strauss 10/19/14 Intro to Urban Ag. Blog Post Growing up, I was always very intrigued as to how my grandfather had been able to manage a farm at home, work a job, raise a family, and enjoy life. From his small farm in rural Connecticut, he grew a variety of vegetables that he was…

Turn Turn Turn

By Linda Stern There is a song by Pete Seeger called Turn Turn Turn. As the title suggests it is about renewal. The garden analogies are endless. The farmer turns and loosens soil in order to promote new growth. Plants emerge and then when they die we take their stalks and leaves cut them up…

Connecting the Farm to the Consumer

By Marcy McMahon Before working on the NYU Urban Farm, I was ignorant about the food growing process. I understood that shopping at the farmer’s market yielded healthier food than the supermarket. But at the farmer’s market, consumers only see the end result of the work put in to growing their food. Alternatively, while working…