A small-scale urban farming operation is leading to some big success for a Calgary man this summer.
Trevor Anderson has been growing his Lil Green Urban Farm business throughout the COVID-19 pandemic thanks to some great support from his neighbours.
Anderson started by turning his entire front yard in central Calgary into a spot to plant vegetables.
“This is where I do all the greens,” Anderson said. “I have the shade cloths on, trying to keep the temperature underneath a little cooler.”
His front yard is covered in things like Swiss chard, lettuce and carrots.
Anderson also has an extensive crop of beets and garlic across the street in a neighbour’s backyard.
It’s one of six yards belonging to neighbours and family friends, who offer up space for Anderson’s crops.
“I grew up working on a bunch of farms, and I ended up working in a bike shop and got laid off,” Anderson said.
“My wife was like ‘So what do you want to do now?’ And I said I want to do what I’ve been doing on the side as a full-time thing — to really get that going, to start feeding people.”
Anderson sells his produce at farmers markets and farm stands, finding that his sales have been growing during the pandemic.
“People aren’t wanting to go to the store,” Anderson said.
“People will just e-transfer me and I’ll drop it off on their doorsteps.”
Eric Dahlberg is among the homeowners hosting Anderson’s vegetable-growing efforts, enjoying the mutual benefits it brings.
“It’s a large garden plot on what was once just a lawn — that puts that land to work,” Dahlberg said.
“We get a bag of groceries every other day during the growing season, so it’s a wonderful arrangement.”
Anderson says he’s fortunate that others have offered him the yards on which to grow his bounty.
“It’s awesome: we feed them, give them good food,” Anderson said. “They enjoy learning about what’s going on in the yard and they get interested in gardening and it’s just a big, happy growing system.”
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