Urban gardening continues to grow as a trend, even outside the United States. News has it that South Africa has begun seeing its own share of farms in urban sprawls – from lawns to parking lots.
The Case of Cape Town
Cape Town is one of the most notable examples of the rise of urban gardening. From being a simple city, the area has transformed into a gardening haven. For the city’s food activists, their campaigns to raise awareness about urban gardening have paid off. The activists even say Cape Town is in the middle of a vegetable revolution.
True enough, Cape Town residents report the lifestyle changes they have gone through after the introduction of urban gardening. Today, these people no longer need any fancy pot or a spacious farm land to grow a plant, as they can do that using unusual items, such as television sets and unused toilets.
Local schools have also benefited from the growing trend. According to the officials of the Cavalleria Primary School, the introduction of a food garden in the premises improved the nutrition of its students.
“Five years ago, our children had lots of white spots on their head. We had medical intervention. It was a sign of malnutrition,” principal Hurshele Carolissen told CNN.
The principal went on and said that since then, the school’s population took over in maintaining the garden. According to him, classroom performance of the students improved due to the good nutrition they get from the locally-grown vegetables.
Food activists continue to work in Cape Town and other areas to further promote urban gardening, with the hopes of opening income-generating opportunities for the locals.
Urban Gardens in the US
In the United States, urban gardening has become a big hit. In Los Angeles, some residents have converted the rooftops of high-rise buildings into herb-growing gardens. Fruit trees and vegetables are also present in these areas.
In Columbus, Ohio, the local government has set up initiatives to promote urban gardening. One of these projects is the community-run 4th Street Farms, which has become the source of good nutrition, education, and employment for the locals. Other related programs include the City of Columbus Land Bank Community Garden Program, Franklington Gardens, and the Over the Fence Urban Farm.
Even celebrities have jumped into the urban gardening bandwagon. Singer-songwriter Jason Mraz, for one, has been known to participate in gardening activities. Most recently, the artist joined an activity organized by the Keep Growing Detroit (KGD) Initiative. Mraz is also a gardening enthusiast and owns an avocado farm in California.