Avrile Remy is the owner-operator of Shamba AZ microgreens and urban farm. As an avid backyard gardener for many years, her earliest experience with “urban farming” came when she got her first apartment in 2007 and tried to have a container garden on her patio.
Avrile quickly received a notice from her landlord to take it down. Shortly after that, she purchased her first house with the biggest yard she could afford and has been urban farming in the Phoenix metro area ever since.
Her passion for growing food runs deep as she grew up in the Caribbean, with her parents owning a farm selling produce for export and to local consumers. Growing up on an island where fresh food is readily available is something she has always wanted others to experience. Her goal with Shamba AZ is to be part of the local food chain and replicate that experience in this community.
Succession Planting for Success in the Market Garden
Michael Bell of Dallas Half Acre Farm has learned a lot about timing and planning ahead for future weekly harvests. Learn how he grows and plans his weekly lettuce harvests here.
Depending on the type of produce and your climate, a single square foot of growing space can yield between 1-4 pounds of food per year. Extrapolate that outward and a relatively small growing space can produce a large amount of food. This is particularly true of high-value, quick turnaround crops grown in succession, things like baby greens, arugula, green onions, and cherry tomatoes.
Urban farming does not necessarily increase food security as urban farmers need to focus on the highest-value crops to keep the lights on. It does, however, increase the variety and freshness of foods available in an urban area and can act as a stopgap in times of food shortages.
Urban farmers grow vertically, in-ground, hydroponically, and in containers. There are two different types of urban farms. There is a controlled environment type of growing in shipping containers and warehouses, and there is in-ground, container outdoor urban farming.