BioRegionNEWS Root and regenerate Urban Farms

We started buying vegetables from the Hillhurst farmer’s market, in Calgary and this grower was one of the farmers there. They are not certified organic but, as explained below, they use some key carbon capture practices that is worth supporting. The image below is from their website and shows the main growing area in SE Calgary.

rows of vegetables on city lot

In talking with the farmer, I learned that they do not till their soil and in the fall they apply animal manure for nitrogen. These happen to be the two most important farming practices for capturing carbon while producing nutrient dense food. It is not common for urban farmers to avoid tillage, as most use the rototiller extensively.

This young farmer is university trained in ecology and is very interested in pollinator habitat. This year we bought a lot of Garlic from him to keep us through the winter. He also agreed to grow Red Cabbage for us – something that we rely on all winter but the organic supply from BC runs out in the stores. This makes us reliant on imports from California.

My test for balanced nutrients in a food is based on how well the greens store in the fridge. After a week or so the crops with too much nitrogen break down. The Spinach from this grower stayed fresh, even packed all together in the fridge.