Canada: Saskatoon couple grows food, not grass, on urban farm

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Jared Regier runs Chain Reaction Urban Farm with his wife Rachel on garden plots at their home and elsewhere in Saskatoon. Included is a mini-nursery and handmade collection boxes for subscribers to their vegetables. Photo by Richard Marjan.

Jared and Rachel Regier were teachers before they decided to become urban farmers in 2015.

By Jenny Sahrp
Daily Herald Tribune
May 9, 2019

Excerpt:

“The unselfish reason was to create a sustainable source of food for people in our community and the selfish reason was that I wanted to have all this food for our family that we couldn’t obtain elsewhere.”

The couple sells memberships for weekly vegetable boxes during the growing season, which provides them a level of financial security and the ability to efficiently plan crops.

“We have very little waste coming off the farm as long as I keep track of our production numbers really well from year to year,” Jared says.

Their urban plots are all in yards in the city’s core areas, and each land owner is compensated with vegetables. Crops that need daily attention, like cucumbers, tomatoes and peppers, are planted at their home garden. Root crops are planted in yards further afield.

The Regiers use trellises to help intensify production and to keep the vegetables clean. They follow organic practices, such as using netting to keep insects at bay.

Two solar PV systems offset electricity needs. Their greenhouse is built into the ground and the beds are insulated. That means the greenhouse is 10 C hotter than outdoors in April and the Regiers can transition plants and stop using grow lights earlier in the season.

Read the complete article here.

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