Urban Agriculture: Ideas and Designs for the New Food Revolution


Urban Agriculture: Ideas And Designs For The New Food Revolution
David Tracey
New Society, 2011

Written by a local Vancouverite, I picked up Urban Agriculture looking for a little bit of early spring inspiration – it being so cold and all here this past April – and David Tracey did not disappoint. Outlining a vision of Vancouver (or any major center) as being “green and delicious”, he introduces the concept of the edible city thusly:

“Imagine a place shimmering under the canopy of the urban forest, the standard shade trees replaced by city orchards ripe with fruit and nuts. Picture the building walls green and alive with vine crops and vegetables in vertical gardens. See the berry shrubs defining the paths and decorating the park spaces. Watch locals of all ages, colors and backgrounds working together on the land, sharing tools, stories and harvests. Once-empty lots are now production-level farms. Flat roofs have come alive with crops and beehives. Aquaculture tanks with edible green covers are attractive features in public displays. Abandoned warehouses and factories have been reconfigured into indoor growing facilities for vegetables, fish, mushrooms and more. Organic fruit, flowers, herbs and vegetables taken fresh from the soil and still surging with vitality are sold at citywide farm gates, kiosks and street stalls……”

Sound good to you? That sure sounds like the kind of city I would like to live in. One in which people are connected to each other, their food supply, and ultimately their earth – recognizing how interdependent our relationships are through how we prioritize growing, shopping and eating. And not only that, this city would require us to think creatively, to utilize space in ways both aesthetic and productive, and to learn about the cycles of life sans pesticides and chemicals. Heavenly!

Urban Agriculture is one of the many books on the market these days designed to help us get that urban space – a book of practical tips, frightening facts, ideas, inspirational stories of projects on the go, gardening ideas and a whole lot more.  Whether you have a balcony, want to add some produce to your home landscape, or aim for full-scale agriculture on your city lot – Tracey has lots of ideas and enthusiasm to pass along to you in a quick-read.  Another exciting book for the sustainability shelf – and best of all it’s homegrown!

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