A nice article featuring Marci Babineau and her urban farm. If you ever wondered how much food you could grow in a front or back yard, or how to keep urban chickens, this article is a good source of information.
Source: Montreal Gazette
On the sidewalk in front of Marci Babineau’s house, I craned my neck to see if I could spot the birds.
In the backyard, just beyond her root-vegetable garden and several fruit trees, a chicken stretched out a wing, then ruffled her black feathers back into place.
Not exactly what a passerby would expect to see on a quiet, tree-lined street minutes from downtown Montreal (I can’t say exactly where; more about that later).
But it’s what urban agriculture enthusiasts across North America would like to see – micro-farms where city dwellers could produce fruits, vegetables, eggs and honey, milk from goats, and meat from rabbits.
Some Montrealers have already enthusiastically embraced the growing urban agriculture movement, which took off after Michelle Obama planted a vegetable garden on the White House lawn two years ago.
Chickens are pecking away in Montreal backyards, bees are buzzing around hives in industrial areas, lettuce is growing in container gardens downtown, and the Lufa Farms rooftop greenhouse near Marché Centrale is producing enough fresh produce to feed more than 1,000 people a week.
It’s not easy, though. Municipal bylaws ban most island residents from keeping livestock, like chickens, and bees, and people are more used to seeing grass in front yards than tomatoes and peppers.
Still, if urbanites, who rely on food grown dozens, even thousands of kilometres away, want to try to become as self-sufficient as possible, how would they do it?
Using my own yard as a test case, I set about to find out.