April 24, 2011 § Leave a comment
Gardeners and farmers love it – and they came out in droves to get it for free at the Washington Park Whole Foods on Saturday. Every spring and fall the store provides free compost for the community, made from their own food scraps throughout the year. What a stellar way to help the planet and give back to the community! We made a brief appearance, helped some people fill up burlap sacks and load them into their cars. It was a great opportunity to chat with people about the Truck Farm and get them excited for the upcoming season. We also pitched Wicked Delicate’s Creative Gardening contest and had several interested parents and teachers. Hopefully Denver is well represented in those photo submissions!
We even got some free compost for the Truck Farm which will come in handy VERY SOON! Thanks to Andrew at Whole Foods for keeping us in mind for his community events!
For more info on the Wicked Delicate Creative Gardening competition go to Truck Farm and click on “The Contest”.
April 19, 2011 § Leave a comment
A few weeks ago we took our first steps towards Denver Urban Truck Farm 2011. Rocky Mountain Seed Co. was having a liquidation sale (unfortunately they have now closed after 80 years), and we snagged TONS of seeds, including many heirloom varieties, for 25 cents per packet! Shortly thereafter we had a seed planting day at Ashleigh’s and started quite a few trays of lettuces, radishes, kale, chard, and other cool season vegetables. This was our first time planting seeds and we were not sure how well it would turn out. Fortunately they have all sprouted! We have seedlings galore now and we can’t wait to transplant them in a few more weeks! In the coming weeks we will be getting soil and compost and preparing the truck for the 2011 season.
Additionally, with the help of some friends we have been developing a restaurant sponsorship program for the season. This program is still in the works but we have already had some interest from a couple local restaurateurs! The general proposal is that restaurants can sponsor the Denver Urban Truck Farm for three-week blocks. During those three weeks, we will park the truck in front of the restaurant on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings, and chefs will be able to use available produce during those times. In return we are asking for a 1% donation of profits from each evening to help recoup costs associated with starting, running, and maintaining the Denver Urban Truck Farm. We are very excited about this proposal and hope that it will be well-received by Denver’s incredible restaurant community. We feel that a partnership like this will benefit all parties and help further Denver’s commitment to local food choices. More to come on this in the near future!
February 21, 2011 § Leave a comment
Planning is underway for Denver Urban Truck Farm 2011! We are working on some BIG things for this year – partnerships, sponsorships, art + food + film events, multiple crops (spring lettuces! kale! squash!), elementary school programs, and even a few new farmer’s market appearances! We’ll have a twitter feed up and running this spring so you can keep track of where we’re headed, in addition to our Facebook page. We learned A TON last year and we can’t wait to grow the team and the farm!
Also, big things are happening with Truck Farms nationwide. The boys over at Wicked Delicate Films have a new initiative up and running – 25 Truck Farms in 25 cities! Stay tuned for more info about this awesome project…
Happy 2011, Denver – we can’t wait to see you on the streets!
September 23, 2010 § Leave a comment
The Denver Urban Truck Farm made the news this past week! Colorado Public Radio’s Anna Panoka came to the South Pearl Farmer’s Market a few Sundays ago and interviewed us about the project. She spent some time interviewing visitors to the market and just recording various sounds of the morning. The story turned out great! Click on the image below to listen!
September 11, 2010 § Leave a comment
It has been ENTIRELY too long since any updates from the Urban Truck Farm – my sincerest apologies! Summer came to an end and school began again at UC Denver, so Ashleigh and I have been pretty consumed.
However, we have had a very big past month! In mid-August, Ian Cheney of Wicked|Delicate and his cameraman Taylor came to visit Denver and film the Truck Farm for their upcoming short film, appropriately named Truck Farm. It was a great day and we had an awesome time with the guys. We drove around the city as Taylor hung out the window filming us cruising the city, and we even pulled up rogue-style to the back end of the Cherry Creek Farmer’s Market to get some reactions from the public. It was a great experience and we can’t wait to see the film! We’ll have more info as soon as we know!
We’ve also been able to “harvest” a few more small batches of stuff from the Truck lately! This evening I made a great little batch of bruschetta with fresh Truck tomatoes, jalapeños, and basil – tasty on a little baguette!
In other news, we pulled up some heavily bug-damaged cabbage and sowed a row of green beans for the cool season. They are sprouting and I’ll post some pictures soon! Ashleigh took the Truck to a local elementary school this past week to talk to some of the kids, at the request of a parent who saw us at the market. The parents and teachers loved it, but the kids were more interested in that very cool old truck! Lastly, we’ll be at the Old South Pearl Farmer’s Market again tomorrow, and Colorado Public Radio will be interviewing us for an upcoming story! Come by and say hi!
July 30, 2010 § Leave a comment
Some news from our friends on the West Coast this week! First to sunny San Diego, where an art and design collaborative Set & Drift has created The Farm Proper – an urban farm in Barrio Logan built in abandoned grocery carts! We here at the Urban Truck Farm love to see new and inventive ways to grow food in the city. This certainly fits the bill! Trucks, grocery carts, the sky is the limit!
Now on to Portland – where my good friend Tricia Martin wrote a wonderful story about the Urban Truck Farm on her well-known and well-read food blog Eating is Art. Tricia is an excellent writer and blogger, a health and nutrition coach, a lover of food, and a fellow Urban Planning graduate from the University of Cincinnati like myself. It’s great that our paths have crossed in the urban agriculture world and she is doing exciting stuff up in Portland! Her food blog has received quite a bit of acclaim in the Northwest – so we really love the mention! Thanks so much, T!
More big news to come for the Urban Truck Farm…. stay tuned over the next couple weeks!!
July 27, 2010 § Leave a comment
After a couple weeks of inactivity, the Truck Farm is back – and we have several things to report!
First our BIG NEWS… Ian Cheney of Wicked Delicate and Truck Farm out in Brooklyn, is working on a new short film about urban agriculture and is coming to the Mile High in August to film our lowly Denver Urban Truck Farm! We’re thrilled to be a part of his newest project and look forward to finally meeting our East Coast inspiration! We’re working towards attending a mid-week farmer’s market in town during his visit. Check back for updates about this exciting news!
We enjoyed another great Sunday morning at the Old South Pearl Street Farmer’s Market this week, especially the early cloud cover! Visitors were as enthusiastic as ever and we had quite a few locals come by to check on our progress. It’s nice to see familiar faces at the market each week! The farm is growing splendidly and we’ve enjoyed several tomatoes and one not-yet-ripe Big Jim pepper that was still delicious roasted with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper! Some kids came by this week and we let them pick some fresh tomatoes from the truck. It’s pretty cool to see the kids excitement at being able to have a hand in our roving farm, and to be able to pick their own produce. Most kids don’t get the chance to visit a working farm, so this really gives them a great opportunity to experience agriculture right in their neighborhood.
We had a bit of an invasion of cabbage worms a few weeks ago, and after visiting a local garden center to ask some experts, we were directed to use an organic bacteria that inhibits their digestion so they will stop eating the leaves. It seemed to work, until several days ago when we were invaded with the dreaded aphids. Our cabbage is looking a bit haggard and they have migrated to our pepper plants now as well. We’re going to try either lady bug larvae or pyrethrum this week to get rid of them. Even our truck farm is not immune to pests, and we think it is actually beneficial for people to see that. We don’t enjoy having damaged crops, but it keeps it all in perspective! Trying to keep the farm as organic as possible also means you have to be a bit more creative when searching out pest-control measures – but it has been a fantastic learning process for all of us!
We also replaced a few of our herbs – our cilantro and Boxwood basil were not looking too hot since Day 1. We also felt we had some wasted space at the back of the truck, so we added an additional row and we now have Italian parsley, oregano, thyme, sweet basil and dill (which has already started to bolt – grrr!). We saved one each of the cilantro and the Boxwood basil, but are still considering putting them to rest. I’ve found from my own container gardening exploits that herbs are apparently the most difficult edibles to grow as they are incredibly particular – and Colorado’s less than moderate climate only amplifies that difficulty! But again, it is all a learning process for Ashleigh, myself, and everyone involved.