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    Program ID - bo090705

    Urban Farming

    For many city dwellers, having neighborhood green space makes for some great hobby gardening. But for the low income urban farmers of South Central Los Angeles, its a question of earning a living, creating their own access to fresh produce and maintaining a vibrant community where families can grow traditional ethnic foods and expose their children to a gang-free environment.

    So when their 14-acre community garden was sold out from under them, they decided to occupy and are now refusing to leave while their legal appeals are heard by the California State Supreme Court.

    Join host Jerry Kay, publisher of the Environmental News Network, to learn more about the South Central Farmers. Hell also talk to award-winning author Michael Olson, an expert on profitable small parcel farming, and well hear from an urban beekeeper.

    This Week's Guests:

    Michael Olson — Author, MetroFarm

    Michael cultivated his first crop at the age of six with what he imagined, at the time, was the world's biggest tractor. He has since participated in the commercial production of beans, beets, blueberries, cattle, garlic, hay, oats, shallots, strawberries, turf grass, wheat and wine grapes in the states of California, Montana and Oregon. He also consults on farm projects throughout the world, with projects ranging from the City of Watts to the island nation of Cyprus, to the jungles of the Amazon. His book, MetroFarm: The Guide to Growing for Big Profit on a Small Parcel of Land, was a Ben Franklin Book of the Year Finalist. Michael is also an award-winning journalist and hosts a radio program called Food Chain Radio in Santa Cruz, Calif,

    Tezo — Urban farmer, South Central Community Garden

    Tezo is a community organizer and one of 350 urban gardeners who helped form the South Central Farmers coalition after their garden was sold in a closed door proceeding by the city of Los Angeles after more than 10 years of existence. Located at 41st and Alameda streets, the garden is primarily used by the low-income neighborhood to grow among other things, papaya, nopales, huanzontle and other crops typical to a traditional Latin American diet.

    Tom Chester — Urban Beekeeper

    Tom has been keeping honeybees in San Francisco for over 10 years. During that time period he has managed as many as 18 hives in different locations around the city. He is a former president of the San Francisco Beekeepers Association and an energy consultant.

    More information:

  • South Central Community Garden
  • Metro Farm: The Guide to Growing for Big Profit on a Small Parcel of Land
  • MetroFarm Website
  • Urban Permaculture
  • Urban Homesteading Path to Freedom
  • Bee Culture The magazine of American Beekeeping
  • San Francisco City Food & Agriculture Report

  • Resources for Journalists:

    Journalists who are interested in researching stories related to any Beyond Organic show topic are encouraged to contact Straus Communication for additional resources, including trend data, background materials, experts, statistics, images and more. The service is free.

    Please contact Michael Straus at 415-777-1170 x 302 or email for more information.



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