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The Urban Farm Podcast with Greg Peterson

Welcome to The Urban Farm Podcast, your partner in the Grow Your Own Food revolution! This audio only podcast features special guests like Jason Mraz, Lisa Steele, and Kari Spencer as we discuss the art and value of growing food in urban areas. We'll explore topics such as urban beekeeping and chicken farming, permaculture, successful composting, monetizing your farm, and much more! Each episode will bring you tips and tricks on how to overcome common challenges, opportunities to learn from the experience of people just like you, and plenty of resources to ensure you're informed, equipped, and empowered to participate more mindfully in your local food system... and to have a great time doing it!
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The Urban Farm Podcast with Greg Peterson
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Visit our podcast page here to find photos, links and more information on this podcast as well as each of our other guest interviews.

Jan 19, 2019

Bonus Episode 23: Seed Saving Class November 2018. 

A chat with an expert on Seeds. 

In This Bonus Podcast:  There is always a bounty of information available in conversations with Bill McDorman. This is the November 2018 episode of a Seed Saving Class - learn about the seed paradigm and  seed history. Listen as the ethics of owning and naming seeds, and other interesting topics are discussed.

Join the class! Register anytime for the next class.
Register Here for the Seed Saving Class with Live Q&A

Bill McDorman is Executive Director of Rocky Mountain Seed Alliance, Ketchum, Idaho. He got his start in the bio-regional seed movement while in college in 1979 when he helped start Garden City Seeds. In 1984, Bill started Seeds Trust/High Altitude Gardens, a mail order seed company he ran successfully until it sold in 2013

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/bonu23  for more information and links on this bonus podcast, and to find our other great guests.

Jan 15, 2019

Transforming waste into soil, jobs, and community.

In This Podcast: 

Sarah Boltwala-Mesina, along with other parents, hoped to start a recycling program at their children’s school. This was the first step on her journey to creating Food2Soil, a business that collects food scraps from people and businesses in San Diego and turns those scraps into rich compost. Her company provides services helping homeowners become successful composting in their own backyard, provides hubs around the city for people to drop scraps off, and offers scrap pickup service to restaurants. There is even a wait-list of businesses and breweries hoping to participate.   

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Sarah is the executive director of  Inika Small Earth, a nonprofit that started Food2Soil where they train interns in good composting techniques. Food2Soil collects vegetative food scraps from local restaurants then composts the scraps at two urban farms in San Diego, selling the finished product to local gardeners looking for high-nutrient soil. 

Inika Small Earth is a charitable organization working to enhance the network of community composting hubs across San Diego.  Their aim is to build the collective capacity to transform food scraps into soil and jobs for the community.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/food2soil for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

416: Sarah Boltwala-Mesina on Community Composting

Jan 12, 2019

From green lawns to green vegetables.

In This Podcast: 

As his wife and youngest daughter began struggling with celiac disease, John Brubaker believed that the pesticides used on vegetables were perhaps weakening their immune systems. This was his entry into organic urban farming. He began small with 20 beds and has been expanding ever since. John is growing numerous crops in his small space, including artichokes and cantaloupe for home, and kale, spinach, beets, radishes and glass gem corn for the Farmers Market. He is finding great success with his natural farming. 

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John has been working on golf courses for over 35 since the age of 16. He planted thousands of trees and just for fun, would typically have an organic vegetable garden on the golf course for the enjoyment of customers and staff.  Along the way he earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Utah State University in Horticulture.   

In 2013 his wife and daughters developed digestive issues. Because of this he started growing his own vegetables, built a compost pile, implemented no dig methods, planted for pollinators, introduced beneficial predator insects, and so on. 

Soon he was giving vegetables to his neighbors and he had become an urban farmer.  In 2018 he named his micro farm ‘Straw Hat’, rented a booth at a Farmers Market and started selling organic produce.  The success was beyond his expectations, incredibly rewarding and now he is planning on retiring from the golf course and going into urban farming full time.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/strawhat for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

415: John Brubaker on Micro Urban Farming.

Jan 8, 2019

Challenging the mono-CULTURE of farming.

 A passion for the soil, the earth and her community started when Leah Penniman began farming at the age of 16. Through the years she has continued to work towards ending racism and injustice in our food system, and also on land reparations for people of color. She and her family have built Soul Fire Farm where they raise culturally important food, delivering it to people in need. They give tours and help train future activists.  Leah channeled her passion into writing a book, Farming While Black. 

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Leah is a Black Creole farmer who has been tending the soil for twenty years and organizing for an anti-racist food system for fifteen years. She currently serves as founding co-executive director of Soul Fire Farm in Grafton, New York—a people-of-color led project that works to dismantle racism in the food system.  

Through Soul Fire Farm’s innovative programs such as the Black Latinx Farmers Immersion; a sliding-scale Farm Share CSA; and Youth Food Justice leadership trainings – she is part of a global network of farmers working to increase farmland stewardship by people of color, restore Afro-indigenous farming practices, and promote equity in food access.  

Leah has been recognized by – the Soros Equality Fellowship; NYS Health Emerging Innovator Awards; and Fulbright Distinguished. IF that was not enough, she is the author of Farming While Black published by our friends at Chelsea Green Publishing. 

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/soulfirefarm for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

414: Leah Penniman on Liberating the Land.

Jan 5, 2019

Mixing up a health drink for soil organisms.

In This Podcast:

When Ben Klempner and his family moved from Jerusalem to the holy city of Tiberias, he researched how to make the soil healthy in order to grow his vegetables. Finding information that was beneficial wasn’t the only hurdle—he was so far away from the products he needed. He kept researching online and seemed to end up with the suggestion of Korean Natural Farming at the end of his searches.  He took it as a sign. As Ben began creating products that utilized the fermenting process he realized that perhaps creating these nutritious, sustainable soil amendments for others was what he should be doing instead of growing his own vegetables. Thus, the Galil Soil Farm was born. 

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Ben lives in the Holy City of Tiberias with his wife and children where he owns and operates Galil Soil Farm. Believing that good soil grows good food, Ben is passionate about growing the best soil and helping others to do the same. When not at the farm he can be found spending time with his children in the woods, paddling a kayak on the Sea of Galilee, or immersed in Bible Studies. 

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/galilsoil for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

413: Ben Klempner on Fermented Soil Amendments

Jan 1, 2019

Growing an herbal antibiotic.

In This Podcast:

Bill Bruneau suffered from what eventually was diagnosed as a leaky gut caused by using pharmaceutical antibiotics. Knowing that plants had medicinal powers he searched out which ones were natural antibiotics and came upon limited but intriguing information on the genus Sida. He waited for someone to write a book about this super-weed and when no one did, Bill knew he had to do it. Listen as Bill lists just a few of the many illnesses he uses Sida to treat or prevent.  

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In 1982, Bill and his wife started Bountiful Gardens Seeds, which is part of the small non-profit Ecology Action of the Mid-peninsula. Ecology Action is an organization that has been diligently working to save the world’s soil for the last 45 years, refining and promoting a bio-intensive farming method that actually creates soil while being very productive.  

While Bill is an herbal hobbyist, medicinal herbs and preventative medicine have been at the core of his family’s health for at least 50 years and when he discovers one that is as good as Sida appeared to be, he wanted to know everything about it. A scientist at heart, he did intensive research into the known benefits of Sida for over a year, seeking out peer-reviewed research on Sida, and in particular studies on Sida acuta. The results have exceeded his wildest expectations.  

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/sida for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

412: William Bruneau on the Genus Sida

Dec 29, 2018

Embarking on extreme tasks to bring attention to important issues.

In This Podcast:

Rob Greenfield lived a fairly normal American life until 2011 when he began reading and watching documentaries that helped him realize he was contributing to the destruction of our planet. That was enough to set him on a course of performing extreme actions in order to motivate others to change as well. Having already taken three separate bicycle rides across America doing good deeds and showing ways to make less of an impact on the planet, he’s embarking on his biggest adventure yet—going an entire year eating only what he produces or forages himself.

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Rob Greenfield is an adventurer, environmental activist, humanitarian, and dude making a difference. He is dedicated to leading the way to a more sustainable and just world.

Rob has visited 6 continents and 40 countries, lived off-grid in a tiny house, wore a trash-suit for a month, dove in more than two thousand dumpsters, cycled across the U.S. twice on a bamboo bicycle, traveled over 7000 miles from Brazil to Panama relying on the goodness of humanity, participated in a cross-country good deeds bike trek, and shared all this to inspire change in others.

His next project is going an entire year without eating food from grocery stores, restaurants, or even eating or drinking at a party.  He will be growing and foraging 100% of his food for an entire year.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/foodfreedom for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

411: Rob Greenfield on Food Freedom Project.

Dec 25, 2018

Building up a better buzz on bees.

In This Podcast:

Walking by Lloyds of London with his wife Ashley, Lloyd Hardrick was intrigued by the beehives in the windows of the famous bank that shared his name. Curiosity led to research and research led to the career path that Lloyd and Ashley ventured on—raising bees. Making an impact on their community is the primary goal for Lloyd as he works to educate people on bees and their importance in our lives. As Lloyd says, “We all depend on bees. It’s everybody’s business to want to save the bees.”  

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Lloyd served in the U.S. Army for 10 years. After the army, he became a certified beekeeper and in 2015 he and his wife Ashley founded their beekeeping company. Honey Bee Goode Apiaries, is not just about bees and honey, they specialize in developing relationships with urban farmers and teaching in the local communities about the relationship between bees, flowers, and food.

Honey Bee Goode Apiaries was one of the Farmer Veteran Coalition’s 2018 Fellowship Fund Grant recipients. Honey Bee Good plants their hives on urban farms throughout their community.

Lloyd was the recipient of a $1000 Tractor Supply donation, through the Veteran Coalition’s program that offers assistance to veterans in the early stages of their farming operations.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/honeybeegoode for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

410: Lloyd Hardrick on Keeping Urban Bees

Dec 22, 2018

Creating healthy, nutritious snacks.

In This Podcast:

Tanya Batche loved to bake but didn’t necessarily think of it as a career. Looking at the frightening trend of obesity and diabetes, she knew there must be a way to still enjoy, and allow others to enjoy her delicious endeavors. Tanya turned her love of baking into her life’s work, teaching us how to enjoy our treats but making them much healthier.  Now you can enjoy her Hunger Bomb cookies too. As well as making these healthy treats Tanya also helps private clients learn to become healthier too. 

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Tanya is a Dietitian, certified in Adult Weight Management with over 25 years of experience helping patients and clients stay healthy.  She has traveled most of the country as a Corporate Dietitian overseeing senior living and wellness programs in healthcare.  She started baking as a little girl in Ohio, where she used to surprise her dad with treats (she hid) after he came from work.

She decided to follow her passion by combining her love of baking and her knowledge of healthy nutritious foods and started her own company! She created Hunger-Bomb Cookies, healthy treats that are delicious and filling while satisfying your sweet tooth, without spiking your blood sugar!  In addition to baking and selling her treats at farmers’ markets and online, Tanya also provides nutrition consultation to clients who want to live delicious and healthy lives.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/hungerbomb for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

409: Tanya Batche on Delicious Low Sugar Treats

Dec 18, 2018

Preferring the taste of fresh pressed over store bought.

In This Podcast:

Curiosity on what to do with the fruit from the three large olive trees in his new yard led Ron Mantini on a quest to make his own olive oil. Over the course of several years, with trial and error and the power of the internet, Ron has discovered how to make an delicious olive oil. He has learned how to turn the olives on his and neighboring trees into a bright green, fresh and addictive pressed oil, a nice pairing for his homemade bread and pasta.

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Ron was born and raised in Lorain Ohio, 30 miles west of Cleveland on the shores of Lake Erie.  He moved to Chandler, Arizona in 2000 after graduating from the Ohio State University to work for Intel Corporation, which he still does until this day.  He is married with 4 children between the ages of 8-13.  With several olive trees at his home, Ron taught himself how to make olive oil from scratch.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/ronsfreshpressedoil  for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

408: Ron Mantini on Homemade Olive Oil

Dec 15, 2018

Becoming a steward of the soil.

In This Podcast: 

As a contour farmer facing the problem of so much soil washing away in the rain, Steve Szudera found his solution when he borrowed a no-till drill in 1981. He never looked back as he learned how completing warm and cool crop cycles and protecting the soil from damage were keys to healthy, productive crops. Steve shares with us ways to rejuvenate our soil, and even shares how he reuses old potting soil, making it healthier than before. 

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Steve is a third-generation farmer from western North Dakota with over 35 years of no-till farming experience building and maintaining soil health. After realizing that the standard farming practices done before he took over were the cause of the wind and water erosion, and that the soil was depleted of moisture and nutrients, he converted to no-till farming.  He learned very quickly that just one simple practice of not disturbing the soil would allow it to rebuild and recover.

He now teaches others how to rebuild and protect the natural commodity of their own soil so that they too can become stewards.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/tabletopfarmer for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

407: Steve Szudera on Nutrient Rich Soil

Dec 11, 2018

Managing an urban farm for families in poverty or homeless.

In This Podcast: Being a single mother trying to provide nutritious options for her children in a food desert gave St. Vincent de Paul’s Urban Farm manager Nika Forte a great understanding and compassion for the people she serves. She shares with her belief that food should nourish the body, mind and spirit with her clientele as she encourages them to reconnect with where their food comes from as they are being helped by the many services of St. Vincent de Paul. 

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Nika is the Urban Farm Manager for St. Vincent de Paul where she creates programming and community engagement events. Her job also includes managing community members who volunteer time at the Urban Farm, growing, processing and distributing freshly grown vegetables to the homeless community and needy families that they provide service for. Her role in the program is to improve food access and food security in under served communities.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/nika for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

406: Nika Forte on Farming for the Under-Served

Dec 8, 2018

Organically recycling through vermicomposting.

In This Podcast: Rhonda Sherman, an extension specialist in the Department of Horticultural Science at NC State University, shares how throwing away our food waste is a major problem in landfills, releasing methane gas which is a contributor to climate change and causing heavy metals to be released into water sources. She spends 90 percent of her work time educating people in what to do with their food waste instead, namely by composting or vermicomposting. Rhonda shares access to many of the publications she’s written which can be found on her website.

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Rhonda is an extension specialist in the Department of Horticultural Science at North Carolina State University, providing leadership for university outreach programs on solid waste management issues through the Cooperative Extension Service. She holds degrees in Environmental Studies and Urban/Regional Planning, and Environmental Resources Analysis with an emphasis in solid waste management.

Rhonda’s areas of expertise are vermicomposting, composting, recycling, and waste reduction. She gives about 40 presentations annually and has authored over 65 publications on these topics. Her new book is The Worm Farmer’s Handbook: Mid- to Large-Scale Vermicomposting for Farms, Businesses, Municipalities, Schools, and Institutions published by our friends at Chelsea Green.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/wormfarmershandbook for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

405: Rhonda Sherman on Worm Farming

 

Dec 4, 2018

 Bringing farm products to the local market.

In This Podcast: Lyndsay Ludden and her husband Eric wanted to grow real food. They talked about it all the time.  This led them to take the bold step to sell their home in Phoenix and find their perfect property in Cornville, Arizona. On just over two acres of land Lyndsay and Eric built their farm from scratch, beginning with chickens and goats. Having more eggs than they could use led them to the farmer’s market. They’ve been working and adding new animals and gardens to the Hoppy Goat Farm for two years now and feel they’ve made the right choice.

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Lyndsay and her husband Eric started a farm several years ago to raise and grow their own food.  Originally their intent was health related however, as “super foodies” they began realizing how much better everything tastes when they grow and harvest it themselves.  They now have two large gardens, as well as goats, chickens, ducks, turkeys, pigs, and bees.  They offer many different items from their farm including fresh eggs, cheeses, mud scrubs, soap and a special seasoning blend.  Plus you can find her at the Sedona Farmers Market on Sundays.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/hoppygoat  for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

404: Lyndsay Ludden as a Farmer at the Market

Dec 1, 2018

Training future farmers to shape the future of our food system.

In This Podcast: Wondering where the bananas came from while eating them in his native United Kingdom was just the first step for Tobias Peggs, as he sought to figure out how to grow the food in his own city that previously would have spent weeks being shipped in from different climates. He was sure he could mimic the plants’ normal environments. Peggs has not only built a working modular farm in Brooklyn, New York, but runs a Next-Gen Farmer training program to help ensure that others are working toward his mission of bringing real food to all the cities of the world.

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Tobias is cofounder and CEO of Square Roots – an urban farming company headquartered in Brooklyn, NYC. He has a PhD in Artificial Intelligence from Cardiff University in his native United Kingdom. He is a Techstars mentor, competitive triathlete, snowboarder, and ramen hunter.

Square Roots grows and sells tasty, nutritious food year-round from their Brooklyn campus of indoor, controlled-climate, modular farms. Their mission is to bring local, real food to people in cities, by empowering next-gen leaders in urban farming—because “the more of us working to shape the future of food, the better”.

Founded in 2016 by Tobias and Kimbal Musk, Square Roots is also host to a “Next-Gen Farmer Training Program”—a year-long, hands-on training program that puts participants at the forefront of the indoor urban farming industry.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/squareroots for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

403: Tobias Peggs on Empowering Next-Gen Leaders

Nov 27, 2018

Bonus Episode 22: Seed Saving Class October 2018.

A chat with an expert on Seeds.

In This Bonus Podcast: There is always a bounty of information available in conversations with Bill McDorman. This is the October 2018 episode of a Seed Saving Class - learn about Glass Gem Corn, how to be a seed steward, and why corn diversity is so important.

Join the class! Register anytime for the next event.
Register Here for the Seed Saving Class with Live Q&A
Bill McDorman is Executive Director of Rocky Mountain Seed Alliance, Ketchum, Idaho. He got his start in the bio-regional seed movement while in college in 1979 when he helped start Garden City Seeds. In 1984, Bill started Seeds Trust/High Altitude Gardens, a mail order seed company he ran successfully until it sold in 2013.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/bonus22 for more information and links on this bonus podcast, and to find our other great guests.

 

Nov 24, 2018

Creating a line of homemade nutritious and delicious snacks.

In This Podcast:As a young mother of two, and having just left corporate America, Ciara Bennett wanted something that was going to be helpful and healthful for her young children.  An inspiration to start making high-quality snacking granola also moved her build a business around this product while allowing her to keep her own identity.  Now she makes Vintage Oats, a line of premium granola with unique & tasty flavors her kids love and so do her customers.

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Ciara is the founder of VintageOats, a Phoenix based, premium granola company.  Originally from Joliet Illinois she has been a resident of Arizona for over 20 years. As a proud mother of a 2 and 7-year-old she was looking for better choices to feed them and her journey was the inspiration to launch her company.

She is the creative mind behind all her premium flavors of granola, which focus on healthy, non-GMO ingredients and no artificial flavors, preservatives or colors.  Primarily selling at farmers markets and other local events, she is expanding to offer her homemade premium granola products online.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/vintageoats for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

402: Ciara Bennett on Premium Homemade Granola

Nov 20, 2018

Homesteading in the Suburbs.

In This Podcast: 

They planted their first fruit tree on a 1/10th-acre urban home. Prompted to look for something healthier, Duane Hebert moved to property just outside of Phoenix, or as he calls it – The Edge of Nowhere. On a semi-urban farm, they focused on growing healthy food and sharing with family, friends and a few customers. With a holistic mindset focused on healthy growing in all areas of the farm, even the chickens get the healthiest diet.  And he shares what he has learned.

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Born and raised in Gardena, CA in the heart of South-Central Los Angeles, Duane grew up a typical urban kid. However, at 19 he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Disease and underwent 6 months of chemotherapy to save his life. Now a 25-year cancer survivor, he strives to live a life grounded in the reality that what we eat and what we keep OUT of our body is critical to healthy living.

In 2004 he and his wife Lori planted their first lemon tree on their typical 1/10th of an acre suburban lot in Northern Phoenix, and 5 years later they had more fruit than they could use or even give away. Then in 2010, a gift of locally-grown apples sparked an interest in seeing just what could be grown in this harsh desert environment. Fast forward 8 more years and the Heberts now run Edge of Nowhere Farm which is home to over 100 fruit trees, as well as laying hens, broiler chickens and pigs.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/edgeofnowhere for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

401: Duane Hebert on Growing a Healthy Diet

Nov 17, 2018

Being a resource for organic growers for over three decades.

In This Podcast: In 1988, Eliot Coleman literally wrote the book on being an organic grower and has been an invaluable resource for organic gardeners and farmers for three decades. He only started growing food because it sounded like an adventure; and he learned how through books and making friends with farmers around the world. We learn who inspired and taught him, how he uses livestock on his farm, how he virtually moved his farm 500 miles to the south for the winter, and more.

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Eliot has over fifty years’ experience in all aspects of organic farming, including field vegetables, greenhouse vegetables, rotational grazing of cattle and sheep, and range poultry. He is the author of The New Organic GrowerFour-Season Harvest,The Winter Harvest Handbook and an instructional workshop DVD called Year-Round Vegetable Production with Eliot Coleman - all published through our friends at Chelsea Green.

Eliot and his wife, Barbara Damrosch, operate a commercial year-round market garden, and run horticultural research projects, at their farm called Four Season Farm in Harborside, Maine.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/eliotcoleman  for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

400: Eliot Coleman on 30th Anniversary of 'The New Organic Grower'

Nov 13, 2018

Changing the role of chemicals in our homes.

In This Podcast: It was not your typical birthday gift but a small collection of home cleaning products, and they changed Diann Peart’s direction in life.  She found a path that filled her passion and allowed her to truly make a difference. When she realized the products were chemical free, her passion for the environment and her desire to help others took over and she knew these products needed to be brought to market.  She has a special offer for listeners today.

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Diann has a PhD in Botany-Ecology from Arizona State University.  She lives with her husband, 4 dogs and 8 chickens at their urban farm is nestled in one of the oldest neighborhoods in Tempe, AZ, 4 blocks west of ASU. She is also Principal and Visionary at Truce LLC, a Tempe-based company that manufactures and distributes non-toxic household cleaning, pet, and personal products.

Truce’s entire product line uses only 14 simple, safe and effective ingredients.  Truce products offer the ability to clean homes, bodies, and pets while avoiding nasty chemicals.

In her spare time, Diann co-founded the community garden across the street from her home where most of the produce harvested is donated to local food banks.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/truceclean for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

399: Diann Peart on Living in a Chemically Saturated World

Nov 10, 2018

Cooking with 8 ingredients or less.

In This Podcast: After several years of contradictory and confusing medical advice, Brandi Doming was worn out trying to help her husband escape the pain of gout. As a new mom and a concerned wife, she sought out the next possible answer and found information on a plant-based vegan diet. This was the first one to give her husband some relief.  She started blogging recipes and recently authored a cookbook designed to make vegan meals easy and delicious! 

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Brandi is the creator of the popular blog The Vegan 8. She is also a mom, wife, and designer. Her blog was voted a Top 21 Vegan Blog of 2016 by the hugely popular vegan magazine, VegNews. She’s appeared regularly in Forks Over Knives magazine and was featured in the documentary Eating You Alive. She lives with her husband and daughter in Houston, Texas. Her new cookbook is The Vegan 8: 100 Simple, Delicious Recipes Made with 8 Ingredients or Less.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/vegan8 for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

398: Brandi Doming on Delicious Vegan Meals

Nov 6, 2018

Being bit by the urban farming bug and loving it.

In This Podcast: He was starting off on a vacant property with lots of Johnson Grass, almost no money, and no way to cut it down and remove it, yet this was not going to stop Michael Bell from building his urban farm. He got creative and found a resource to not only help remove the grass but turn it into an asset and deep rich soil in one season. Relying on his creativity, he now has a half-acre farm and more customers than produce. All this and he only farms part-time!  

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Michael is a Physical Education teacher and father of four who in April of 2016, bought a half-acre of nonresidential zoned land a mere 6 miles from downtown Dallas.  He started clearing small 1000-foot sections using a weed eater and billboard signs.  That Fall he planted his first 30-inch bed with Sala nova and a few cherry tomatoes and became hooked.

He now has 67 twenty-five-foot beds focusing on greens, carrots, beets and a couple of other veggies.  He hopes to transition from full time teacher to full time farmer in a couple of years.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/dallashalfacrefarms for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

397: Michael Bell on Part Time Urban Farming

Nov 3, 2018

Incorporating wild ingredients into every day and special occasion fare.

In This Podcast:  Her curiosity, her love of gardening, and her creativity in the kitchen, come together beautifully and for our benefit when Marie Viljoen compiled recipes for her new cookbook.  She shares how she moved from gardening in 66 square feet to foraging all over New York City.  If you are ever in her city, you will want to take a foraging walk with her!

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Marie is a celebrated New York City forager, gardener, cook and author who has loved edible plants since her childhood in South Africa.  She lives in Brooklyn, NY with her husband and leads acclaimed seasonal wild plant walks through NYC.

In Marie’s new book Forage, Harvest, Feast, there is a groundbreaking collection of nearly 500 wild food recipes and features hundreds of color photographs as well as cultivation tips for plants easily grown at home. This cookbook is destined to become a standard reference for any cook wanting to transform wildcrafted and homegrown ingredients into exceptional dishes, spices, and drinks.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/66squarefeet for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

396: Marie Viljoen on Wild Inspired Cuisine

Oct 30, 2018

Weathering the challenges of growing food in
South Florida.

In This Podcast: Growing up and becoming a ward of the state, then becoming emancipated at 17 left a lifelong mark on Karin Fields, so when she started learning how to grow food in one of the most challenging and unique areas of the country, she wanted to help other young girls like her gain those skills too. For twenty years she has been the Edible Gardening Gal and a valuable resource for education about growing food in South Florida.

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or visit www.urbanfarm.org/podcast

Karin has over 20 years of vegetable gardening experience in South Florida where she installs backyard edible gardens, gives informative talks on vegetable gardening, and educates people on how to grow their own food. Locally known as the Edible Gardening Gal, she loves giving her gardening talks at libraries all over South Florida.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/ediblegardeningal for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

395: Karin Fields on Growing Food in the Tropics

Oct 23, 2018

Harvesting native foods in the Sonoran Desert.

In This Podcast: The desert is full of amazing native plants that provide a rich, delicious bounty of food, IF you know what to look for and how to harvest it, and Brad Lancaster wants you know these secrets.  He is excited about a new cookbook that shares delicious and tested recipes for native trees and plants. And these plants are suited to thrive in the hot and dry climates, so they tolerate drought conditions better, while giving other great benefits to all desert residents.

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Brad runs a successful permaculture consulting, design, and education business. He is focused on integrated and sustainable approaches to landscape design, planning, and living. Growing up in a dryland environment, water harvesting has long been one of his specialties and a true passion.

He is the author of a permaculture bible for water harvesting:  Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond Volumes I & II and is a contributor to Desert Harvesters’ Eat Mesquite and More cookbook.  This new release centers on the abundant harvest of mesquite and other Sonoran Desert food plants we can plant, steward, and enjoy where we live, work, and play.

Go to www.urbanfarm.org/eatmesquite for more information and links on this podcast, and to find our other great guests.

393: Brad Lancaster on Wild Food Forestry

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