Audio by title 4_seasons_city_farm

Rebecca Brown at a Four Seasons City Farm cook-out

1:50 minutes (1.67 MB)

She said community gardening can bring in --at least potentially- a wide variety of people.

“Like today: we have some disabled individuals and some children out here. So, there are all kinds of other community groups that can get involved so that it can become a norm to garden and we can have more eyes out looking for more pieces of land.”

Brown said money is also a factor.

“ There are some grants out there. They’re not easy to get but there’s a lot of people out there who have money and who believe in this sort of thing. It (community gardening) builds community, and it stimulates people environmentally, which is a really important thing for our youth today because so much of their stimulation comes from electronics. So this would give them a chance to get out and actually touch elbows w/ people.

"You can incorporate any facet of organization going on --from churches to disabled to children like we mentioned, and any elderly groups. Any nursing home that’s got the space can put some tomatoes in."

Daniel Ingwerson on the challenges of community gardening

9:18 minutes (8.52 MB)

Tom Over- 7/7/11

“The city has given a lot of support (for community gardens) vocally… but it’s often been more of a promise than a follow thru. Just this past year there was going to be $60,000 distributed to , I think, 50 gardens."

“I know of over a dozen community gardens that did not receive the grant that was announced on Earth Day by Mayor Coleman at Franklin Park. The got zip as far as money is concerned. That’s kind of disappointing.”

When the city spends $44 million on the new Scioto river way, and they can’t even put $50,000 into community gardens. That’s not saying much for the city’s real support…compared to other big cities Columbus is at the back of the pack (in its support for community gardens.)

“Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate what the city has done so far, but it’s nowhere near enough. Our food supply is not as safe and secure as some of us would like to think.”

Hank Koehler talks about Four Seasons City Farm

8:18 minutes (7.6 MB)

Four Seasons City Farm has about 2.5 acres of cultivated land which 12 garden plots comprise on the East Side of Columbus. Last year’s harvest was about 2,000 lbs of produce, said Hank Koehler who runs the gardens.

Here’s Koehler’s run down, off the top of his head, of what they supply to restaurants and stores:

Greener Grocer: herbs, lettuce, and tomatoes

Clintonville Community Market: zucchini and tomatoes

Angry Baker: raspberries and lettuce

Black Creek Bistro: leaf lettuce, figs, tomatoes,

Yellow Brick Pizza: basil, tomatoes, leaf lettuce

Koehler estimates their revenue to have been about $2,000 last year. But I still want to find out how Four Seasons' income from selling produce and flowers compares with their operating costs.

While we're at it, does anyone have a sense of how many community gardens and urban farms in Columbus are paying their operating costs from the money made from sales of produce and/or money that comes from people working in the gardens ?