In this episode, hear about growing cut flowers six stories above the San Francisco Bay Area with Joanna Letz of Bluma Flower Farm. Hear what it’s like to grow flowers in a bustling metropolis, differences between field and rooftop growing, and some of Joanna’s favorite varieties. We discuss the advantages and challenges (yes, there are weeds up there) of farming on top of a building in the city. As both farmers and cities realize the benefits of urban agriculture, hopefully there will be more opportunities for growing crops on rooves, and we hope this episode will give growers the confidence to make the leap!
We were inspired by Joanna’s example of hyper local production, cutting the flower miles on her blooms down to almost nothing by growing in the city where many of them will be enjoyed. As we look for ways to cut down on the amount of transportation that goes into food and flowers, we want to encourage growing on rooftops and other city spaces that we don’t often think of as productive farmland. As an added bonus, green rooves can help mitigate urban heat islands and help reduce flash flooding by absorbing some of the water that would otherwise run off. Whether you’ve ever wondered how to get into rooftop growing, or just wondered what it’s like to grow cut flowers over a bustling metropolis, give this episode a listen.
In Shop Talk with Neversink Farm we chat about new tools, old tools, how they can benefit your farm and tips to use them successfully with Conor Crickmore of Neversink Tools, which manufactures tools for farmers. In this episode of Shop Talk, we discuss how to know when seedlings in paper pots are ready for transplanting. If they are planted too soon, seedlings may not be fully rooted and can fall out of the pots during transplanting. If you wait too long, the paper pots may start to break down before they are transplanted, and roots and tops may become tangled, making transplanting difficult. We talk about how to find the sweet spot for paperpot transplanting success in this Shop Talk segment.
Thanks to our collaborator on this podcast Neversink Farm. They make this podcast free to everyone with their generous support. For tools designed and made by farmers, check out www.NeversinkTools.com
Articles mentioned in the interview for show notes (all are already free/public):
Profile of Joanna and Bluma Flower Farm in June 2018 by Ellen Polishuk
Setting goals, taking risks and prioritizing your time in an unsettled season from 2020
Rooftop farming on the rise: The mechanics of farming six stories up from 2021
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