Urban agriculture designing and assessing edible landscapes



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View full page. Please refer to the specific study period for contact information. Please refer to the LMS for up-to-date subject information, including assessment and participation requirements, for subjects being offered inIn this subject you will learn about the history of urban agriculture in countries around the world and explore the various roles of urban agriculture in modern-day cities. Given the nature of the subject, a wide diversity of topics will be covered including but not limited to: plant growth requirements, agricultural inputs such as water and nutrients , soil contamination, pests and diseases, urban-specific production methods, design and management of community gardens and edible landscapes, mainstream and alternative crops fruit and vegetables , agro-ecology principles and practices ; and the economic value of residential food gardens.

Content:
  • Katrin Bohn
  • History of the Urban Farm
  • Who is EdiCitNet?
  • Features and Functions of Multifunctional Urban Agriculture in the Global North: A Review
  • Continuous Productive Urban Landscape (CPUL): Essential Infrastructure and Edible Ornament
  • URBAN AGRICULTURE IN ISRAEL: BETWEEN CIVIC AGRICULTURE AND PERSONAL EMPOWERMENT
WATCH RELATED VIDEO: Edible Perennial Gardening - Plant Once, Harvest for Years

Katrin Bohn

Metrics details. Urban agriculture is a means to improve community health and reduce health inequities.It encourages civic participation in food system governance and offers citizens opportunities to explore concepts of food sovereignty within an urban setting. The objective of this study was to engage civic participation in developing an urban agriculture action plan for a Canadian prairie city. The purpose was to identify the short- and long-term goals and the barriers and facilitators to growing more food in the city.

Six concepts form the action plan. Growing more food within public spaces in order to make urban agriculture more visible and improving education strategies are two areas that participants ranked both important and feasible.

Participants relayed that increased visibility could create a cultural shift to strengthen the local food knowledge. School engagement, community development, maximizing food production in public places, and attending to regulations and bylaws are focus areas for improving urban agriculture. An integrated vision from the city administration with a paid position to make connections, oversee bylaws, and consider local food procurement systems is necessary to advance a healthy community-based food system.

A systems approach to building a resilient food system and strengthening food sovereignty will require political will and a public mandate. Experts anticipate there will be five billion people living in urban settings by the year , and are questioning our ability to meet the demand for nutritious food [ 1 ].

Many North American cities have obesogenic built environments that allow for access to low-quality, energy-dense food and little opportunity for active living [ 2 ]. This is particularly evident in lower-income neighborhoods and results in growing health inequities [ 2 ]. Dixon et al.

The question then is how to change the structure to improve the uptake of healthy foods such as vegetables and fruits.The purpose of this paper is to describe how to operationalize urban agriculture, thereby improving community health and reducing health inequities.

Urban agriculture has many forms and is often part of the role of municipal planning departments [ 4 ]. Urban agriculture encompasses gardening in backyards, schools, public right-of-way and boulevards; community gardens; urban farms; rooftop and balcony gardens; hydroponic, aquaculture, and vertical gardening; keeping microlivestock such as hens, rabbits, and bees; greenhouses; permaculture design in parks; edible landscaping; public orchards or food forests; and agricultural parks [ 5 , 6 ].

Increasingly, cities in North America are encouraging urban agriculture and developing municipal food strategies [ 7 ]. For example, in , Sacramento City Council approved two ordinances related to urban farming, allowing residents to grow and sell food directly from their property, and giving these urban farmers a tax incentive in the process [ 8 ].

Cities such as Detroit and Los Angeles have focused specifically on improving urban food production in disadvantaged areas with high-needs clients and are examples of urban agriculture programs that can advance health equity [ 9 ]. In Canada, there are a number of cities, including Vancouver, Edmonton, and Toronto, with food policy commitments that include urban agriculture yet action on the commitments varies across settings [ 7 , 10 ].

Public engagement is an important aspect to a healthy and just society [ 11 ]. Urban agriculture activities encourage public participation in food system governance and offer citizens opportunities to explore concepts of food sovereignty within an urban setting. Food sovereignty refers to a process of expanding democracy to regenerate local, autonomous, healthy, and ecologically sound food systems that respect the rights of people to decent working conditions and incomes [ 12 , 13 ].

A people-centered approach allows for food justice and food sovereignty where context-specific needs can be addressed [ 14 ]. The food sovereignty movement recognizes political and economic power in the food system and is a critical alternative to the neoliberal model favoring market forces over health and health equity [ 15 ]. Weiler et al. Urban agriculture provides opportunities for citizens to participate directly in their food system, while gaining a sense of power and control that can improve health.

Furthermore, Sommers and Smit [ 17 ] describe urban agriculture as a means for cultural preservation and crime prevention, to name but a few of the key areas that contribute to public engagement in urban settings. This paper reports on a study designed for public engagement in developing an urban agriculture action plan for a Canadian prairie city. Surrounded by large farms of oilseed, grains, pulses, and cattle, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, has great food-growing potential.

In contrast to its large export industry, the province only produces seven percent of the in-season self-sufficiency needs of Saskatchewan people [ 18 ]. With this food production gap in mind, there is an opportunity to enhance civic operations and change the urban built environment in a manner that will contribute to a community-based food system, build resilience against an unpredictable climate future, and benefit the local population through greater vegetable and fruit production.

Implementing a sustainable urban agriculture action plan requires practical planning in order to be successful [ 19 ]. Though there is ample literature citing the benefits of increased urban agriculture [ 4 , 7 , 17 , 20 , 21 ], there is a gap in the research when it comes to the steps required to execute a comprehensive, citywide strategy [ 5 , 19 ].

We intended this study to address this gap.The action plan is available to municipal government leaders to guide changes to the built environment, promoting access to high-quality food, active living, and economic development. This study had two main objectives: 1 to create an urban agriculture action plan that can increase access to quality affordable food and opportunities for physical activity and 2 to identify barriers and propose solutions to increased support for urban agriculture.

Given the wide range of players involved in this potential public health intervention, we used a systems thinking approach. Systems thinking is useful because it considers both the larger, holistic picture, while also allowing the problem to be reduced to variables that can be measured and analyzed in an empirical manner [ 22 ].

We used the concept mapping approach outlined by Trochim [ 23 ] to provide structure to our data generation, sorting, and rating process. We also supplemented data from this exercise with group discussions.

Thirty-three respondents generated 58 unique statements in the brainstorming phase. For the data sorting and rating phase, we held ten community meetings across the city with participants recruited through the same means as the brainstorming phase. Additionally, we placed posters advertising these meetings in the community centers and libraries where they were hosted at least a week before the meeting took place.

The participants completed three questionnaires: a demographics questionnaire, a questionnaire in which the participants rated each of the 58 statements based on importance, and a questionnaire in which the participants rated each of the 58 statements based on feasibility. The demographics questionnaire was included to allow us to understand the heterogeneity of our data set. After completion of the questionnaires, we instructed participants to sort the statements into distinct groupings or concepts.

This software converts the information from sorting statements into a similarity matrix, with the statements plotted on a point map using non-metric multidimensional scaling MDS [ 24 ]. MDS was applied in two dimensions in order to produce X , Y coordinates suitable for representation on a two-dimensional surface. If more participants placed statements in the same grouping, they appear closer together on the point map.

Based on the point map, hierarchical cluster analysis allowed for creating statement clusters. This partitions the point map into non-overlapping clusters in two-dimensional space. We decided on the number of clusters by starting with a large number of clusters 15 and then reducing the number of clusters each time asking whether all the statements made sense grouped together, or whether they would make better sense if separated. We continued reducing the number of clusters until we felt each cluster formed distinct concepts.

Figure 1 shows the cluster map, which is based on the point map. In addition to the concept mapping exercise, group participants were lead through a semi-structured discussion on how to grow more food in Saskatoon. We had 66 participants across the ten sites in the group discussions. We audio-recorded the discussions for ease of note taking, analyzing them with support of NVivo 11 as a means to code ideas and to elicit recurring themes.

The information from this exercise augmented the concept mapping data. There were 55 people who completed the demographics questionnaire and the sorting and rating forms. Most respondents lived in a single-family dwelling and had at least some experience growing food in the city see Table 1. Most participants also indicated they were food secure and had adequate income to meet their needs.

The six clusters in the concept map are public education, public spaces, community development, schools, regulations and bylaws, and close to home.Figure 1 depicts the two-dimensional cluster map of all of the submitted statements, with statements sorted together more frequently being placed closer together on the map.

We have added a third dimension to the cluster map in the form of layers. The layers in the cluster map represent which clusters are more important.

Participants scored each statement individually for how important participants felt it was to be in the action plan; this resulted in calculating an average score for importance for each cluster of statements.

A greater number of layers indicate a higher score of how important each cluster was. We have similar data for feasibility. Below we provide a brief description of each cluster. Actionable items included things such as public education campaigns on urban agriculture and providing public training on different types of urban agriculture and edible native plants.

This was a recurring theme within the group discussions. Participants seemed to think that this disconnect from the food system stemmed from the modern industrial food system where food is highly processed and packaged in Styrofoam and plastic [ 25 ]. This knowledge deficit also extends to cooking and preserving food. This cluster was the second most important cluster overall. Other actionable ideas included using public spaces, such as boulevards and vacant lots, for growing food, and planting edible plants along public walking paths.

During discussions, participants raised multiple benefits of using public spaces for community gardens in particular. This included the expense of individual yard conversions, the challenges of working around fences and buildings in private yards to find good growing conditions, social opportunities through gardening in public spaces, and gardening spaces for people living in high-density housing.

In general, the downsides to gardening in public spaces revolved around Saskatoon-specific bylaws around fencing and selling produce.City-sponsored community gardens are not allowed fencing, which participants expressed as necessary to discourage vandalism.

Selling produce from community gardens is also not allowed. Community development cluster included statements about bringing people together, building connections, and bridging available resources with the people who need them. Actionable items included connecting would-be gardeners with unused gardening space, including links to local urban agriculture organizations on the city Web site, creating city-supported resources to help citizens begin urban agriculture projects, and expanding backyard gardening programs.

To ensure this information reaches a broader audience, community radio stations could be involved so that all citizens are connected.

The idea of using gardening to connect with seniors and to ensure seniors are included in the community came up multiple times. Along with this, participants discussed the benefits of shared gardens with seniors. In the concept mapping exercise, three different points came across as being particularly important concerning promoting food in schools: 1 promoting the creation of gardening programs within schools, 2 having school cooking projects, and 3 connecting schools with local community associations to find space for outdoor classrooms.

The statements were echoed in the group discussions, where incorporating gardening into the school system was very well received. In the discussions, participants drew attention to multiple ways in which incorporating gardening into schools would be logistically challenging: Teachers are consistently short on time, so asking them to prepare another subject may not be realistic; gardening projects may require additional funding for the schools, which can be hard to attain; and gardens require summer maintenance when schools are closed.

This coordination between classes made the gardening program more feasible and cost-effective, since students require materials for all shop projects. The use of the gardening program would then make the arts class materials an investment that benefits the school and its students for years to come. Participants also suggested that school gardens could be a place for teaching English as an additional language.

Having hands on gardening experience would be an engaging environment to learn the language while also allowing new Canadians to grow food familiar to their home country.

Lastly, the university could also be involved through horticultural or teaching internships. Participants identified city bylaws that planners could consider when forming new suburbs and adjusting existing city plans.

Suggestions of notable feasibility and importance also included incorporating edible landscaping into the official community plans and decreasing penalties for owners of vacant lots if they allow food to be grown on them.


History of the Urban Farm

Advances in Landscape Architecture. This reflexion comes from a look over the city, particularly the relationship between the built and the open spaces that constitute it. In this look we came across the enormous importance that the system of open spaces has and has always had on the construction of the city, its balance, its identity and its experience. On a closer approach to the system of open spaces of the city, we were confronted with the existence of typologically qualified spaces and of spaces without any typological attribution but that are, by no means, less important than the former. Open spaces, interstices between the built fabric of the contemporary city, that present a certain continuity and that allow the flow of air, of water and matter, simultaneously with the flow of residents or casual users.Sometimes, besides that flow, an informal appropriation of these spaces as spaces for fun, games and socializing is verified, emphasizing the enormous potential presented in the structure and cohesion of the city as support of the urban experience, of social interaction and, of the development of the sense of community. About these spaces, several questions have been raised concerning its quality and diversity, namely its lack of integration in a recognized urban typology and all the consequences that this determines.

Assessing Demand for Urban Agriculture. form of edible landscaping, trees are more easily integrated into multi-use spaces than.

Who is EdiCitNet?

Introduction to research Urban agriculture, in general, is a practice that holds an historical connection with the development of society itself. The matter and the necessity to develop energy and resource sufficient societies, is explored by multiple areas of science and technology. However, the argument of urban ecologists goes into a simpler direction: they envision a progressive plan for our cities, in a gradual transition from our concrete jungles towards a city that works as a productive environment. This urban environment can be expressed into multiple typologies of implementation, seeking the intrinsic connection between the urbanised territory and the natural and biological processes of creating life. From green infrastructure systems the introduction of green areas and strategies in the urban environment to urban farms, it is explicit that, in a decade marked by the strength of local initiatives and community engagement towards the common-good, it became possible to create a vision where the public spaces could also bear the mission of producing food for everybody. The plan developed in this research was designed envisioning the potentiality for a multidisciplinary approach towards urban food production.The theme was, therefore, motivated not only out of the current and historical links in Bad Cannstatt situated in Stuttgart, Germany with the productive landscapes of its surroundings, but also in synergy with a broader perspective of a sustainable future. The process of the research This study was divided into three parts.

Features and Functions of Multifunctional Urban Agriculture in the Global North: A Review

The Urban Farm as a garden project began in mostly as a collection of students growing food on surplus space. This began a tradition that continues to the present although the idea of surplus space is a thing of the past. The program was initiated by Richard Britz, who was a young architect teaching in the department of Landscape Architecture and was a brilliant organizer and outspoken advocate of getting students to understand the importance of growing food. His primary work centered on a concept which he called the Edible City in which he and his students were considering ways of retrofitting existing city blocks into planned communities dedicated to self sufficiency. Using the central inner — or surplus — space available in a typical Eugene city block as a study area, Britz and his students proposed strategic phasing sequences depicting how individual Urban Farms could be created to subsequently transform the way cities were being designed and lived in.

What would our cities look like if agriculture was systematically integrated into the urban fabric? Landscape architect Phoebe Lickwar thinks about how we could grow more food within cities — how agriculture should be a part of contemporary urban infrastructure.

Continuous Productive Urban Landscape (CPUL): Essential Infrastructure and Edible Ornament

D espite the growing popularity of urban agriculture, many city farms continue to face the challenge of insecure land tenure and overly restrictive public policies.Some researchers and policy makers have identified the need for an updated framework for the movement that would support urban farmers as they navigate land use, zoning, and property tax regulations. Community land trusts CLTs are contributing to this structure, providing a locally controlled approach to land use that fosters community activism and engagement while responding to evolving market conditions and neighborhood needs. While city farms and community gardens are often the public face of urban agriculture, small-scale backyard growing spaces and edible landscapes also yield a significant portion of production. Urban agriculture has afforded communities diverse environmental, economic, and social benefits, including improved nutrition, heightened food security, ecological restoration, the creation of open spaces, and opportunities for education and job skills training Bellows, Brown, and Smit ; Kaufman and Bailkey ; Smit, Ratta, and NasrCity farming also has the unique ability to bring together diverse populations, build social capital, and promote empowerment through community building Staeheli et al.

URBAN AGRICULTURE IN ISRAEL: BETWEEN CIVIC AGRICULTURE AND PERSONAL EMPOWERMENT

Skip to search form Skip to main content Skip to account menu You are currently offline. Some features of the site may not work correctly. DOI:Introducing edible landscapes to urban greening systems represents an opportunity for improving urban food supply and security. In this study, questionnaire surveys were performed in eight sample communities in… Expand. View PDF.

We identified 32 urban agricultural sites: 9 community gardens, 6 school gardens, 4 CSAs, 7 edible landscapes and 6 urban farms (Fig. 5a). In addition, 15% ().

View Scopus Profile. Katrin Bohn teaches and researches sustainable architecture and urban design with a focus on urban food production.Much of her design research deals with the relationships between urban space and food-productive urban landscape and bridges the gaps between environmental design thinking, urban space production and sustainable lifestyles. Since the UK's first urban agriculture conference Urban Nature , co-curated by Bohn, she has contributed widely to conferences, publications, exhibitions and design and policy debates, both nationally and abroad.

RELATED VIDEO: Intro to Edible Landscapes

In recent years, urban agriculture UA projects have bloomed throughout the world, finding large applications also in the developed economies of the so-called Global North. As compared to projects in developing countries, where research has mainly targeted the contribution to food security, UA in the Global North has a stronger multifunctional connotation, and results in multiple combinations of farming purposes and business models pursued. The present review paper explores the contribution and role that UA plays in cities from the Global North, defining its functionalities toward ecosystem services ES provisioning and analyzing the factors that hinders and promote its regional diffusion and uptake. The manuscript integrates a description of UA growing systems, as well opportunities for crop diversification in the urban environment, and a comprehensive classification of UA business models. The distinctive features in terms of business models, farming purposes and farm size are then applied over an inventory of UA projects in the Global North, allowing for a characterization and comparative analysis of distribution frequency of the different project typologies. First, it was hunting for food and caves to live in.

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Overview: In Durand, Michigan, fresh produce is easily accessible to anyone in the community through 12 edible landscapes planted with 80 different varieties of fresh fruits and vegetables.Population : 3, Program goals: To increase access to fresh produce and encourage community members to eat more fresh fruits and vegetables. How it works: Edible landscapes use fruit and vegetable plants as part of the landscaping design, both for aesthetics and for consumption. In May of , volunteers planted and tended to more than 80 different fruits and vegetables, including tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, cucumbers, kale, watermelon, strawberries, and pumpkins, in downtown Durand. The Edible Landscape Program is an effort to beautify the area and increase walkability while also encouraging community members to eat more fruits and vegetables. The produce grown in the edible landscapes is available to anybody who wants it, at no cost.

Landscapes You Can Eat. We work with beginning and experienced gardeners to create beautiful, diverse and delicious edible landscapes at the residential, neighborhood, and community scale. Our experienced team works closely with clients to design and install beautiful, productive, and low-maintenance gardens uniquely tailored to each site and designed using permaculture principles.


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