Local News

UC website aims to help urban farmers

By From page A9 | July 04, 2014

The University of California has launched a new website intended to provide urban farmers with practical, science-based information.

Visitors to http://ucanr.edu/urbanag can peruse information about raising livestock, crop production, marketing and environmental issues aimed to help those farming, on a few acres, whether in their back yards, at a school or in a community garden.

Planned additions to the site include urban farming policy news and stories about such farms around the state.

“The site will be a resource for urban farmers who are selling what they grow, as well as school and community gardeners, and folks who are keeping some backyard chickens and bees,” said Rachel Surls, a Cooperative Extension adviser in Los Angeles County, in a news release.

“We also intend it to be a resource for local policymakers who are making decisions that impact farming in California cities.”

A team of University of California Cooperative Extension farm advisers, policy and advocacy experts, agricultural economists and others created the site in response to a survey of urban farmers, many of whom are new growers facing issues like contaminated soil or growing close to their city neighbors.

“They need basic information on planting, pests and irrigation, as well as information that’s more specific to farming in the city,” she said. “For example, they must navigate local laws and regulations that impact farming which include zoning and health codes.”

Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter. http://about.me/cory_golden
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