Living in one of the most expensive cities in the US makes it challenging to find sustainable sources of food on a budget. An affordable and increasingly trendy alternative to grocery stores is micro farming. This is an incredibly effective way to beat the ever-rising costs of local grocery stores and become self sufficient. Since micro farming removes the need to travel to pick up food, it is also a great way to reduce your carbon foot print. Here’s how to get started on your new micro farm and start growing some eco-friendly savings!
Creating Your Farm
With the multitude of micro farming designs, it’s easy to create a garden that will suit your space and farming needs. Those living in an apartment or condo might opt for a rooftop garden or greenhouse. These can be built out of an outdoor shed or a series of low crates to house your plants. With the multitude of greenhouse designs available, you can choose a unique greenhouse layout that will suit your needs and personal style.
If you don’t have access to a communal roof top patio, a hydroponic garden is a great option. Hydroponic gardens are by far the most popular method of micro farming and can be constructed using PVC pipe. This is quite an affordable material and can be picked up at any local hardware store. Visit a local hydroponics shops for tips on how to create your own.
What to Grow
The possibilities of what a micro farmer can grow in their garden are endless. Growing your own vegetables is very rewarding and is the first step in living a sustainable lifestyle. Vegetables like lettuce, kale, leeks, and cucumbers are perfect for growing in a plot style micro farm. It is even possible to grow larger vegetables like sweet corn, potatoes, beets, and cabbage in your micro farm. Certain root vegetables can be cultivated in small pots, along with herbs, lettuces, and other small plants and make the perfect sustainable apartment décor.
Depending on if you live in the city center or the suburbs, your municipality may have specific rules on the type of crops and livestock you are allowed to raise. If you live in an apartment building or condo complex, be sure to check with your building manager before you embark on a mission to erect a massive outdoor greenhouse. Another thing to consider is the types of crops that are best suited for Seattle’s rainy weather and short summers. Plants such as tomatoes, strawberries, or cucumbers are examples of hardy plants that can stand up to the harsh Northwest weather.
If you still find yourself seeking information on how to start your micro farm, paying a visit to a local gardening or hydroponics store is a great first step. After following these tips and tricks, you’ll be well on your way to becoming a full fledged urban farmer.