: a tract of land devoted to agricultural purposes
: a plot of land devoted to the raising of animals and especially domestic livestock
: an area of land and its buildings used for growing crops and rearing animals

noun \ˈgär-dən\

: a piece of ground, often near a house, used for growing flowers, fruit, or vegetables.
: a container (as a window box) planted with usually a variety of small plants.

It doesn't take a lot to have a healthy, earth-conscious life-style. No big tractors, no acres and acres of land and the cost can fit your budget if planned right.

We live in the 'mid-town' part of our city, not too close to uptown/downtown, but close enough to bike or walk to restaurants and events. The part of town we live in has an abundance of green and the are is surrounded by hundred-year-old trees . We live off one of the main streets in the city but most of the time you'd never know it. We are fortunate to have a small but nice backyard -just big enough to have several small gardens and a chicken coop, and room for a couple of big dogs to run around. It's a great neighborhood. Perfect for us and our life style. In a way we have the best of both worlds...small town in the middle of a big city.  I am definitely a city girl with city-girl ways so I don't think I could survive real country life on a farm!  But there is no reason why I can't bring some of the farm to the city.  We have been growing our own veggies, composting and kitchen composting for quite a while.  What we grow ourselves far surpasses what we can by at a market, especially in taste. Plus we know it's healthy, cared for and loved (especially the chickens)! What we can't get from our backyard we try to get locally - farmers markets, locally owned restaurants and shops, natural and organic food stores. If we do have to go to a chain grocery store then we are very careful about what we buy.  We read labels!!!

You don't need a BIG red tractor or acres and acres of land to grow vegetables, raise a small flock of chickens and live healthier. If you live in the city and want to have healthy food and healthier lifestyle it can be done...with a little planning and NOT a lot of money.

  • A few tips for starting your own urban farm or garden:
  • Keep it simple.
  • Plant what you love.
  •  See what your neighbors are growing.
  • Grow what you can't buy.
  • BE CREATIVE  in planning the beds.
  • Follow the sun, even if it means planting squash or a few tomatoes in front yard. Some veggies are beautiful and have gorgeous green unique shaped leaves
  • You can plant down the side of a driveway.
  • be adventurous …purple potatoes?
  • Outline just a small area that gets good sun and start digging.
  • Go vertical in smaller places
Once you have decided what you want to grow do your research! Talk to nurserymen in your area - they should be knowledgeable as to what grows well in your climate zone, the care the plants need, etc. Talk to your neighbors about their gardening  successes. Search the Internet!!!!

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