Common Roots Urban Farm grows its business, sells manure, plants
'If you want a plot here, get your name on the list real soon,' says farm project director
City gardeners are eager to get their hands dirty at Halifax's Common Roots Urban Farm.
The farm's 175 plots are all spoken for this spring and there's a 130-name wait-list, says project director Jayme Melrose.
"If you want a plot here, get your name on the list real soon," she said Monday.
The farm, which is adjacent to the Halifax Infirmary site, sells vegetables and flowers in the summer. In spring, it sells gardening supplies such as manure, liquid seawood and plants.
Melrose said the farm's manure is a big seller.
"It's very well composted, weed free, medication free — good manure."
Small spaces can have big yields
Sarah Burgess, who works at the farm, is giving a workshop Tuesday on growing techniques for small spaces.
"I'm mostly focusing on intensive growing, what you can grow in a four-by-12 plot using all the vertical space, timing, spacing. All of those details."
She said despite the cool temperatures, which drop below 0 C at night, there's plenty that can be planted now.
"There's a lot of stuff you can get in the ground now — peas, greens, radishes, summer turnips, those things can all go in the ground already.
Interest in the urban farm, now in its fifth year, keeps growing, says Melrose.
"Lots of people want to grow food for two main reasons. One is food is getting expensive, and two, lots of people want really healthy food so when you grow it yourself, you can make the freshest, healthiest food around."
There's a good feeling that comes from working with soil, Burgess added.
"You get to learn a lot about your relationship to the land. You learn the power of things to grow on their own as well as a stronger sense of how we are connected to the earth."
With files from Amy Smith