“Grow Your Own”: Urban Farming in Amsterdam
- Location: Amsterdam, the Netherlands
The most creative ideas and concepts rise out of the most uncertain of times. Teun and Yildiz from KAYATREE Permaculture have teamed up with the city of Eginstill to set up a “City Pocket Farm”, demonstrating just how easy it can be to grow your own food, even in the city. This is an inspirational exemplar project for Mobilane.
City Pocket Farm
Teun and Yildiz want to show others how you can “Grow Your Own” anywhere – even in the most urban of environments. Limited space should not stop you becoming self-sufficient – you should take a fresh look at your options. With a little creativity, you can grow something in even the most challenging spot!
We asked Teun to tell us more about this project. “Since the coronavirus hit, we were unable to continue with an assignment in Italy. We had planned to build an edible garden there, staying there for three months. It did not take long for all the negativity to begin; when all we saw were empty supermarket shelves and gloom, we knew we wanted to make a positive statement. We began to imagine how good it would be to take control of your own food production in the city without this constant reliance on the supermarkets.”.
And so, the City Pocket Farm concept was born.
Via their Instagram page City Pocket Farm they share tips and encourage followers to produce their own food, using what they have at home or to hand. “It doesn’t have to be very complex or difficult. What we have seen with City Pocket Farm is that by thinking creatively and using your network you can reuse things in a sustainable way, reimagining it for the production of herbs or vegetables such as courgettes, tomatoes and peppers, for example. We gathered a lot of materials and started a community project with it. There was a lot of response to our shout-outs for materials, and the commitment to this continues to be high. Many people had never tried to grow their own produce. Now that they have seen the process from seed to fruit with their own eyes, there is a lot more knowledge and awareness- it’s educational and fulfilling.”
Vertical strawberry wall
A stunning eye-catching element of the garden in Amsterdam is the LivePanel wall that has been attached to the brickwork. The LivePanel wall offers space for more than 40 Fragaria vesca strawberry plants. The plants thrive in moist soil with plenty of sunlight. To maximise this, the LivePanel wall is east facing. The plants are planted into the cassettes and are supplied with the correct amount of water by means of capillary action.
“The system is very cleverly devised with the gutters and the screens. This was also an experiment for us, as we had never worked with a green facade system before. The strawberries that we placed in the wall grew really well. It was great to see how simple the system is and how easy it was to maintain and fill the gutters.” says Teun.
Find out more about Urban Farming
“Urban Gardening” or “Urban Farming” first emerged as a global trend in New York. This growing of food in an urban environment is not just the pastime of big business – it has huge benefits for homeowners and ordinary communities. Almost every garden or balcony can add elements of an urban garden.
The importance of Urban Farming continues to grow. Home-grown produce has the smallest of carbon footprints, right on the consumer’s doorstep. No need for complex lengthy logistics – local produce reduces the pressure. Committed urban gardeners usually plant and grow their produce organically, producing fresh unprocessed fruit and vegetables – a healthier, more sustainable approach to growing.