ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel
  • »
  • Food and Cooking»
  • Farms & Farming

A Love Affair with Urban Farming

Updated on July 8, 2015

The Response Has Been Very Encouraging

I’m a believer!

I’m a born-again urban farmer and I believe in all the benefits of urban farming and sustainable living.

I’m standing on a soapbox right now and screaming to the heavens….THIS IS A GREAT LIFE!

I’ve written quite a few articles about urban farming and sustainable living and quite frankly, I’m blown away by the response I’ve received. I knew urban farming was a big thing here in Olympia where I live, but I had no idea how many people in other states and countries also believed in the benefits. That makes my heart sing, because I believe our society needs to return to its roots and get back to basics. It should be obvious to the most jaded among you that what we are doing, as a society, ain’t working too well. As a collective, we have complicated the hell out of living, and it really is time to put on the brakes and coast to a stop.

Some of you reading this understand what I’m talking about. Some of you have your own urban farm, so you get it. Some of you are dreaming of it one day, and that’s wonderful. Some of you are just curious.

You’ve heard of it but maybe you don’t know exactly what it means. You’ve heard it used in tandem with “sustainable living” but that just muddies the waters more for you.

Well thankfully I’m here to bring clarity.

Don’t try to thank me. I embarrass easily.

It all began like this
It all began like this | Source

Urban Farming Definition

Let’s not over-think this definition. The definition is in the phrase. Urban farming is the practice of growing, processing and distributing food in a town, city or village. It includes animal husbandry, beekeeping and horticulture.

In other words, if you have a small herb garden or a small veggie garden, or if you have apple trees or raise chickens, you are practicing urban farming. Congratulations!

Me with shaggy hair last summer

Sustainable Living Definition

Sustainable living refers to a lifestyle that is intent on reducing a person’s carbon footprint and reducing the use of the Earth’s natural resources. It is most concerned with finding a natural balance and respecting the relationship between man and the Earth.

I’m reminded of a song by Joni Mitchell and the lyrics “they paved Paradise to put up a parking lot.” In a sustainable living environment, that would not happen.

And then we added chickens
And then we added chickens | Source

Put Them Altogether and They Spell…..

Well, they spell our lives, here, in Olympia, Washington, where Bev and I live. We are urban farmers and we practice sustainable living. We are proud of the way we live. I’ll tell you why after I describe our lifestyle.

We live on about 1/8 of an acre within the city limits of Olympia. We actually live in a normal neighborhood, quite like neighborhoods all of you live in. This is not a housing development with restrictions. This is an urban neighborhood with few restrictions. In fact, it is a neighborhood within a city that encourages urban farming and sustainable living. Bravo to Olympia, I say!

We have a large vegetable garden, an herb garden, fruit trees, berry bushes, chickens, rabbits, quail and soon, ducks and goats. Each year we add to our urban farm. Each year we take further steps to lessen our need for energy. We recycle religiously. We practice composting. We have rain barrels. We are actively seeking a balance between our lifestyle and the needs of the environment. We live frugally according to the philosophy of “needs rather than wants” and we are ecstatic.

I am not selling our philosophy but rather explaining it. If it’s not for you, great! If you find it interesting, great! If you would like more information, get in touch with me and I’ll tell you what I know.

And then we added quail
And then we added quail | Source

Why Do We Do This?

This is going to sound preachy. If so, I apologize in advance. My goal is not to preach but rather inform and encourage. I understand that there are those out there who enjoy creature comforts. They have worked hard all their lives and now they are living comfortably in their 4,000 square foot home with two SUVs in the garage and club memberships. They eat at the finest restaurants because they deserve to do so, dammit. They have played the capitalistic game all their lives and they see nothing wrong with reaping the benefits.

Again, bravo for you!

It’s just not for me.

I’ve got concerns.

I see a planet that is being raped daily. Many of our non-renewable resources are disappearing. Whole forests are disappearing. GMO foods are poisoning us. Laws and regulations are ignored so that the industrial machine can keep on keeping on.

And I feel it’s my responsibility to do my part to counteract that damage.

It’s as simple as that. I’m really not trying to convince anyone that my lifestyle is better than theirs. I don’t debate politics with Republicans and I don’t debate economics with corporate CEOs. This is my way and I leave you to your way, and may we all live in peace.

Do I feel I’m really making a difference? Maybe or maybe not, but I know I have to at least try to be a part of the solution. I have to live with myself, and I don’t like living with a wasteful, self-centered person. So I do what I do.

I go to bed at night knowing that I have tried my best to live in harmony with the Earth. I enjoy the fact that I am eating foods that I grew and raised. I am continuing a tradition that has been passed down by generations, and that makes me feel good and in touch with my roots. If this lifestyle was good enough for my grandparents then it’s good enough for me.

And bunny rabbits
And bunny rabbits | Source

So What Do You Think?

It really is not difficult to do. There is an initial outlay of physical labor, but once the planning is done and the muscles have been exercised, maintaining an urban farm is fairly easy. I spend about an hour a day keeping this place running and functioning smoothly. I know people who watch television four hours each night. I consider my hour farming to be much more worthwhile.

If I’ve piqued your interest then get in touch with me. I’ll be happy to share some thoughts and suggestions with you to get you started. Bev keeps bugging me to start a blog about urban farming. Maybe I’ll do that. Seems like it would be time well-spent.

If you’re ever in our neighborhood, stop by and say hi. I’ll give you a tour. You can feed the chickens and play with the rabbits. I might even make you a fresh smoothie from our berries to quench your thirst.

And our newest additions
And our newest additions | Source

A Late Addition

I actually wrote this article two weeks ago, but I’ve been a little slow in posting it. Since that time we’ve had some additions to our farm. We have a Nubian goat named Payote. She only has three legs and she’s a doll. I want to rename her Tripod. We also adopted her two babies for the next six weeks until they are old enough to be back on the big farm from whence they came.

In the city we are allowed two miniature goats. We got lucky with Payote. Some birth defect stunted her growth, so she meets the city regulations. When the babies get older we’ll send them back to our friend’s farm and then get ourselves another miniature goat to keep Payote company. We’ll milk them, make cheese and just enjoy their loyal company.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go clean out the goat enclosure. There seems to be an excess of poop in there. J

2015 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 19 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Suhail, I hope that dream of yours comes true soon. Best wishes my friend and thank you!

    • Suhail and my dog profile image

      Suhail Zubaid aka Clark Kent 19 months ago from Mississauga, ON

      Hi Bill,

      I am revisiting hubs on urban and hobby farming and of course I remembered that you are deep into it and enjoying every bit of it.

      Just to let you know, my brother and I are back into researching small farm as we would like to get into it within a year time.

      I am looking forward to this great way of living.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Too funny goego....I'll have that image in my head all day now.

    • goego profile image

      goego 2 years ago from Loserland

      Lol full circle- you'll be back one day... Yes you'll be back (in a spaceballs helmet voice) and when you do, read one of mine:)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      goego, I was in those coffee shops talking about it. :)

    • goego profile image

      goego 2 years ago from Loserland

      Ps- This self sufficiency urban farming stuff is what guys my dad's age used to talk about in 60's coffee shops :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I think so too, goego. Thanks for returning. :)

    • goego profile image

      goego 2 years ago from Loserland

      Oooh dang I've been away from the site for a while and have missed all of this, I think your on to something here-

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Chantelle, thanks for stopping by and for following me. It's always good to meet people who "get it" regarding organic gardening and the environment.

    • Chantelle Porter profile image

      Chantelle Porter 2 years ago from Chicago

      I love your dedication. I have a large organic garden in my backyard adn berry bushes but no animals. I'm not even sure we can do that in my town. Glad to have met a kindred spirit.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Lady E...we''re trying to make it happen. Would love to have more land but we're making this work.

    • Lady_E profile image

      Elena 2 years ago from London, UK

      Awesome. It's a happier and more peaceful way of life. I didn't know you and Bev are Urban Farmers. I enjoyed reading this. Lovely green Hub. :-)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Oh goodness, Zulma, we have so much going on. We have ducks coming. I should be ready for them this weekend. Then we turn our attention to the front yard. We want to make an edible yard out there....when time allows, of course.

      Glad you like the goats. They're calling me, the hungry little buggers. :)

      Have a superb Thursday, my friend.

    • phoenix2327 profile image

      Zulma Burgos-Dudgeon 2 years ago from United Kingdom

      (high, squeaky voice) Your goats are adorable!

      (back to normal) Bill, you've come so far with your farm and you've every right to shout it from the mountains. What's next for you?

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Lawrence. I think I'm getting closer to doing that blog. I just need a little more time but it will happen.

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 2 years ago from Hamilton, New Zealand

      Bill

      A Blog would be awesome! We've never had farm animals but we used to have peaches, mandarins, limes, lemons and our veggies.

      Sadly we had to sell that place but we've still got lemons and now grapes (still got a gallon of the juice in the freezer!!) And Rosemary

      Awesome hub. We'll get there again

      Lawrence

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Vicki, I think it's one hell of a dream, and the best part about it...it's attainable. Good for you. Keep us posted on your progress, my friend, and thanks for stopping by.

    • Victoria Lynn profile image

      Victoria Lynn 2 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      I'm still dreaming. I tried having raised beds while working full-time, trying to write, and keep up with an 1800 sq ft house! And it's just me! I've had it! I've been downsizing, getting rid of stuff I've never thought I'd part with. It's so freeing! And it's getting easier. My plan is to move back to my darling little 800 sq foot house that I lived in for 12 years. I've been renting it out. I'm going to sell this house that I can't keep up with cleaning anymore, be out of debt with money in the bank. I'll be able to pick and choose how much I work, focus on taking care of just one small house, and hopefully visit family and friends more, plus slowly start a little urban farming. That's my goal, anyway! Thanks for the inspiration!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Jeannie, oddly we don't and never have. I really don't have a clue how to stop them...weird. Sorry! Thanks for stopping by....if I hear of a solution I'll let you know.

    • Jeannieinabottle profile image

      Jeannie InABottle 2 years ago from Baltimore, MD

      Bill, my fiance and I have a vegetable garden this year, but it does not look nearly as lovely as yours. We have to keep netting over the top of it to keep away the squirrels. They are quite aggressive here! Do you have a problem with squirrels, and if so, how do you keep them out?

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you my friend. A little goat envy never hurt anyone. :)

    • cygnetbrown profile image

      Donna Brown 2 years ago from Alton, Missouri

      I still love your goats! I guess I've got a little 'goat envy' going on. I hope to get more involved in urban gardening myself even though where I live is about as rural as I can get!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I hope so, Olde Cashmere. We need a cultural revolution in this country. Thank you!

    • Olde Cashmere profile image

      Olde Cashmere 2 years ago from Michigan, United States

      Truly inspiring and I love your philosophy. It is articles such as this one that really get the ball moving in the right direction.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      you are very welcome, adevwriting. Thanks for the visit.

    • adevwriting profile image

      Arun Dev 2 years ago from United Countries of the World

      I really believe in this concept. Thanks for sharing this informative hub.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Debra. I feel pretty fortunate at this stage of my life.

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 2 years ago from West By God

      I loved raising goats and chickens wehre I lived in the early 89's. It is so nice to see what all you have going on at your little farm.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Twin, we do happen to think we live in heaven. :)

    • Minnetonka Twin profile image

      Linda Rogers 2 years ago from Minnesota

      On that note, I meant to say how charming your urban farm looks. How cool to have goats, chickens, quail, bunny rabbits and your own food. It sounds wonderful over there.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Twin, thank you! The baby goats are adorable, aren't they? I get such enjoyment out of them in the evenings. They are so playful and curious and full of life.

    • Minnetonka Twin profile image

      Linda Rogers 2 years ago from Minnesota

      Bill-I commend you for being an urban farmer. I thank you for helping preserve our environment. Your lucky I don't live on Olympia-like your sister, those goats would be gone. How darling are they?? Thanks for the great information and photo's.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      There's nothing like homemade, Doc. :)

    • Safari Chic profile image

      Marlene 2 years ago from FL.

      Billy, I'm definitely going to have to try that berry smoothie. It sounds delicious!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Frank, you didn't miss it. You're just fashionably late. :) Thanks my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Deb, that latest ruling is mind-boggling to me. I want to know where my meat is coming from. We just ran into that yesterday at the grocery store...the clerk had no idea where the meat came from...we didn't buy it. :) Thanks my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Nell, Bev will never let me have horses, but llamas would be a definite possibility. LOL Thank you! I hope the tip helps your brother. The slugs are real big buggers here and can eat most of the garden if not stopped.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 2 years ago from Shelton

      Hey Billybuc, don't know how I missed this..:( Perhaps I was waiting for you to clean up the goat poop..LOL thank you for sharing your love of urban farming...

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 2 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      It's fun to do your own thing, isn't it? You can sleep well at night, too, knowing the you are GMO free and your meat isn't coming from China, now that the FDA says farmers no longer have to make point of origin known...(enough said)

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 2 years ago from England

      Hiya Billy, first of all I loved the video and the tip about leaving the grass to grow naturally around everything you are growing and it stops the slugs is genius! never ever thought of that! I will tell my brother when he is slogging away cutting the grass around the veg not to do it anymore as he has a pain in the butt with slugs! lol! I love it Bill! I wish I had some lands so that I could do the same thing, what you are doing is awesome! what next, two shire horses, a couple of llamas and a camel? lol!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Genna. As long as I live I will never understand the callous disregard for others that some have. What are they thinking? Do they not care about anyone or anything? When I was young I was clueless. Now I understand that my actions count...and I need to make them count more.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Awww, Peeples, thank you. That was a great story about you and Will. Thanks for sharing it...and thanks for your very kind words. I love that you donated food to the Food Bank. What a huge heart you have....I'm proud to call you my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Doc! I understand it isn't for everyone, but we absolutely love it. We're already making plans for next spring. :)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you PS! The hairdo is gone....too much trouble and too hot. :) I'm practical to the core. I wanted to try it long, I did it, now I'm back to comfort and ease of care.

      Have a superb Sunday and blessings are winging their way to you.

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ruby, you are welcome to our urban farm any old time. We'll let you feed our animals until YOU get your fill. :) Thank you my friend.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 2 years ago from Massachusetts, USA

      "I see a planet that is being raped daily. Many of our non-renewable resources are disappearing. Whole forests are disappearing. GMO foods are poisoning us. Laws and regulations are ignored so that the industrial machine can keep on keeping on." That about sums it up, my friend. For what it's worth I happen to think that you are making a difference, but that's my opinion. It is sad to think of those who still don't do things such as recycle, although it is now mandated in many areas. I look at the onramps to local highways that are littered with beer bottles, plastic bags, and other refuse. The other day, I saw a mattress and two garbage bags someone had heaved to the side of the road. How would they feel if we tossed this garbage into their living rooms? If only people would make an effort to become more aware and less wasteful...

      Your passion for urban farming is wonderful! Cheers and Kudos. :-) And I love your new addition of little Payote...what a cute name and play on words.

    • peeples profile image

      Peeples 2 years ago from South Carolina

      Bill, 8 years ago I met my wonderful husband. While trying to learn about each other we had about a week long discussion on what our goals were in life. In the start of that conversation, in an attempt to explain how I felt about how the world was turning out I mentioned the song with the lyrics "they paved Paradise to put up a parking lot." My husband had never heard it (and this was before we had so many music apps on phones to look it up). We were mid shopping one day and it came on the stores radio. I made him stop and listen to it. I'm sure he thought I was a tad crazy, looking back. Now everytime we hear it we think of that time when we were trying to figure out if together we could make just a tiny piece of this earth better. Here we are 8 years later, no where near the goal, but working on it. I have enough veggies this year to donate to the local food shelter, and that is amazing. Next year I hope we have enough to start selling at the farmers market and work towards gaining enough income to cover the costs to do more. It's an amazing feeling to start getting back to basics. So glad you share your passions with us, and I certainly would love if you started a blog! (sorry just realized how my short story ended up a little on the long side lol!) Keep telling us about all of it! You are an inspiration for those of us with the goal of having what you do!

    • Safari Chic profile image

      Marlene 2 years ago from FL.

      You seem passionate about sustainability, the health of the people, the planet. There are many benefits in urban farming such as being able to grow your own food, fruits & vegetables herbs. I think it's wonderful that you and Bev are into urban farming. It sounds like a good lifestyle since it is centered on community interaction. When you grow your own food, it is more nutritious & healthy and less likely to be infected with harmful pesticides. My friend's husband is into urban farming. He grows berries, zucchinis, guavas, tomatoes, spinach, zucchinis & other fruits & vegetables in the garden. There are so many more. I understand your concerns. You are already making a difference. I like your newest additions Payote and the rabbit is precious! This is an interesting& useful hub.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 2 years ago from sunny Florida

      Loved this, bill. Especially the video with you and Bev and Minerva last summer. Nice do!!! Why not...it works

      Growing and harvesting and sharing make this endeavor so rewarding. I do not have a garden this summer ...which saddens me some but my flowering plants and green plants that are flourishing help ease the longing for one. Couldn't do it this summer...

      Take care of you and keep the word circulating ...

      Angels are headed your way this evening ps

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 2 years ago from Southern Illinois

      I think it's great that you and Bev are into urban farming. I dearly love feeding animals, birds, squirrels and a rabbit and I now live on Main St. lol

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I speak the truth, Liz, so you are welcome, but you did all the work. :)

    • Elizabeth Barrett profile image

      Elizabeth Barrett 2 years ago from Maine

      Aw, shucks. Thanks Bill!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Liz! I've seen what you've done about weight and getting in shape, so I have no doubt that one day you'll have your own land. You are a lady who accomplishes when she wants to and I admire that.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Maj, you crack me up! Menopausal cows? LOL Having kangaroos in the paddocks would be way too cool. Thanks for sharing. That brought a smile to my face.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Kalinin...they are pretty adorable. They are outside my door right now begging for grain. LOL

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Bill, glad you like our goats. They are a real treat. As for the next project, that will be a greenhouse we'll put up this fall. Lots of work but it's a labor of love. Thank you my friend and Happy Weekend to you.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Wiccan, thanks for stopping by. it's always nice hearing from you. Those from the "old country" understood the value of farming and gardening. Somehow, over the years, society moved away from it all, and I think it's a shame that it happened.

    • Elizabeth Barrett profile image

      Elizabeth Barrett 2 years ago from Maine

      What you have is what I am working for. Someday, to have my own land and gardens and animals. Apartment life is the pits. Kudos to you, too for practicing sustainability and doing what you are doing with what you have!!

    • travmaj profile image

      travmaj 2 years ago from australia

      Way to go Bill, a lifestyle many dream of but don't achieve. What strikes me also is that you and Bev are so compatible, working together to ensure your dreams come to fruition, both inspiring each other. This isn't always easy and together must make a difference. I'm amazed how much you achieve on your urban farm. What a beautiful goat Payote, she's going to be so happy. I'm way behind but we do have kangaroos in the paddocks, numerous rabbits, wombats, the odd snake or two, occasional deer, parrots galore, the best dog in the world and two menopausal cows. ...Cheers and best...

    • kalinin1158 profile image

      Lana ZK 2 years ago from California

      Preach it, Bill! Hooray to sustainable living! I hope to have a little urban farm of my own someday. And congrats on acquiring your new baby goats, they are SO adorable, I can't stand it!!

    • bdegiulio profile image

      Bill De Giulio 2 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Bill. It's amazing what you have done with just an 1/8 of an acre. The goats are a great addition. Those little ones are too cute. Can't wait to see what you come up with next?

    • WiccanSage profile image

      Mackenzie Sage Wright 2 years ago

      Very cool. My grandparents (who came from, like, rural Italy in the 1800s) did this... came to NY, settled in Brooklyn, bought a house in the middle of a concrete jungle and turned the yard into a total farm. They grew veggies & fruits, their own grapes (Grandpa made wine in the cellar), they even raised rabbits-- Grandma, being a farm girl, thought nothing of harvesting that meat.

      I keep some favorite veggies & herbs on a screen porch but our lifestyle choice (condo instead of house) leaves me with limited space for a serious urban farm. I enjoyed living vicariously through your hub, lol.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thanks Jackie! Once I commit to something it just seems to take over my life. :)

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 2 years ago from The Beautiful South

      I have a feeling I will never catch you Bill; but it is fun trying. What progress you have made. Great read as always! ^+

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mike, I don't think I ever envisioned the day when someone would be fined for catching rain in rain barrels. Weird times indeed, my friend.

      Anyway, thanks for stopping by. Have a great Thursday.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well, Mary, one pepper plant is a good starting point. We began four years ago with a small herb garden....and now look at us. LOL I'm glad you are feeling better, my friend. Thank you for always being here.

    • mckbirdbks profile image

      mckbirdbks 2 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

      I applaud you Bill. I believe you are right that taking care of your families needs is very obtainable on very little land. Here in California we have a huge water issue so gardening does not make too much sense. There are also restrictions galore imposed by the cities. Even catching rain is illegal most places, but I doubt they are enforcing that at the moment. We just had a big celebrity brought to court for stealing water. We live in amazing times, and I don't see us coasting to a stop, but piled up in a wreck at the bottom of civilization.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 2 years ago from New York

      I love reading about your growing farm. Each step adds to the farm and to your rewards!

      Unfortunately the development I live in is not as liberal as yours. No farm animals allowed. Gardens, that's another story. My flower gardens have suffered the last two years because of my health issues, but as I get things back to normal I'm thinking of veggies too. I have one pepper plant this year ;)

      Voted up, useful, awesome, and interesting.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Oh my, Sha, it starts slow and them multiplies like crazy. I think that's great that you have beans growing there. Well done, dear friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Most of the time, Faith, I just call her Momma! But if you have food she'll respond to any name. LOL

      Thank you as always. I happen to think I live in an urban heaven.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Cris, I have not seen her, but you can bet I will today. Thank you! Calamity Bill...it has a nice ring to it. :)

      blessings always

      bill

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Clive, obviously the way to your heart is through your stomach. LOL I think we'll go with goat cheese rather than curry goat. :) Thanks my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Brian, I'm almost there except for the electric car....we have an electric mower but now with the goat, who needs a mower? We are getting closer each year, my friend.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Lori, the carbon footprint refers to the way we live regarding natural resources and how reliant we are on them....can we provide for ourselves without hurting the environment? Can we live here and at the same time sustain all life?

      I'm glad you enjoy these articles. There will be more.

      Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Ann, I simply cannot return to city life...lawns and all that....I am a country boy at heart. I need animals and flowers, veggies and fruits...I need space to walk quietly....what you described sounds like heaven to me. If you move again for those reasons then I think they are very valid reasons.

      The smoothie is waiting for you, my friend.

      Thank you!

      bill

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Your urban farm certainly is growing! The goats are so cute. I love the name Tripod. Are you going to change Peyote's name?

      It must be so satisfying to put dinner made with homegrown ingredients on the table. I planted some lima beans in my hugelkultur bed and they're actually growing! I'm so excited. Now I have parsley, pineapples and limas growing in my yard. It's a slow start but I'm getting there!

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 2 years ago from southern USA

      Inspirational write here, dear Bill! It is refreshing to read just how passionate you are about urban farming. This world and its inhabitants would be so much better off if more and more would live this way.

      Oh, now, I am loving that name, Payote LOL How creative. Tripod is perfect too Aw. What a sweetheart and that photo shows just how adorable they are.

      Peace and blessings that you and your urban farm flourish

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Chris, I will give the blog some thought. I would like to share our experiences with others and see if we can't make this movement grow into a huge movement. Thank you!

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      LOL...Linda, I think I would agree with you totally on that. I can't think of a single reason why we would ever get a donkey...but I'm married to Bev and all bets are off when she's involved. :) Thank you for the chuckle.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Mike, I think it would be very cool to do that....as soon as I figure out how to add more hours to the day. :) Thanks for the suggestion. You can bet I'll be thinking about it.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Great example, Dora. Thank you for sharing that very practical example that is so very common.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      I agree with you, Bill, and I thank you!

    • CrisSp profile image

      CrisSp 2 years ago from Sky Is The Limit Adventure

      Yes please and thank you for a fresh berry smoothie!

      I was watching "Calamity Jill: Living off the Grid with Jill Redwood" on vimeo.com and thought of you. It's a short clip but very inspirational. If you haven't seen it yet, I suggest you check it out and you'll know what I mean when I say, "inspirational". I'm pretty sure you'll like her too.

      Now, this deserves a real vote! Yes to Urban Farming!

      Love from the sky~

    • clivewilliams profile image

      Clive Williams 2 years ago from Nibiru

      Those quails look yummy!!!...and i see you added goats. Look up how to curry goat. Delicious.

    • B. Leekley profile image

      Brian Leekley 2 years ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

      Bravo, farmer Bill. The next step is for those who want a sustainable future for life on earth to achieve obtaining wheelbarrows, spades, hoes, two by fours, rain barrels, plywood, chicken wire, frying pans, and jalopies made by machines run by electricity generated by clean energy. I've been reading about a group called Citizens Climate Lobby and another called 350 and another called Commit2Respond.

    • lambservant profile image

      Lori Colbo 2 years ago from Pacific Northwest

      Hi Bill, great article. I was wondering why you didn't mention the goats, since i saw them on your facebook page, but then you updated at the end. Congrats.

      Your definition of sustainable living is the same as wikipedia and I don't understand what is meant by carbon footprint? Can you elaborate more on what sustainable living looks like?

      I enjoy your FB posts as you share all your urband farming. Thumbs up!

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 2 years ago from SW England

      This is wonderful and I loved the film of your garden with Minerva yelling in the background.

      Some time back, we moved to a small, easily maintained house, a lock-up-and-go type of place, from a lovely bungalow with a huge garden. Over these last few days we've visited friends who have large gardens in the countryside and who have made the most of every space for herbs, veg, small livestock, as well as flowers and the like, so now I miss my garden! I'm contemplating moving again, when I said this was my last house! I wouldn't mind finishing the traveling in order to potter, plant and provide.

      Today also saw me at an adventure park with my two grandsons. It was an eye-opener because the place is huge, they have many varieties of animal and bird, they have space, play areas and lots of simple climbing and exploring opportunities. I've never seen so many lovely people all together, smiling all the time, running about, children not being rebuked for anything. Why? Because they are in a friendly, natural, welcoming environment, where education is taking place and where the world makes sense. I was encouraged because I saw children taking an interest in feeding animals, respecting plants and wildlife and taking in the sights, sounds, weather.... everything! My faith in human nature has been restored and that's what it should be like in homes too. It doesn't cost a lot (nor did our visit today) and it's fun. What more could you want?

      I'm looking forward to that tour and to the smoothie, bill!

      Ann :)

    • cam8510 profile image

      Chris Mills 2 years ago from Maple City, Michigan

      Bill, I shared your article and video with my son back in Michigan. He and his girlfriend have taken over my home and property. While it isn't really "urban" gardening they do, it is sustainable living they practice. Much of what I see you doing reminds me of their efforts as well. This is great stuff you've shared with us. I encourage you to start the blog. It is a needed resource for others who want to live this way. I spend all of my time traveling now, but the time is coming when I too will be planting my own food and living in a way that is good for both me and the world we inhabit.

    • profile image

      mikeydcarroll67 2 years ago

      Have you thought about doing aquaponics?

    • Carb Diva profile image

      Linda Lum 2 years ago from Washington State, USA

      Bill, I enjoy each and every one of your urban farming hubs. We have our herbs and this year have added cherry and pear tomatoes.

      Your goats are adorable, and the thought of being to make your own cheese--well, that is something I have always dreamed of doing.

      Please, just don't purchase a donkey. Our neighbor 2 doors away has one. The wonky-donkey alarm goes off before the sun is up, and believe me it's not a pleasant way to begin the day. I can understand horses, cows, sheep, goats, or birds. But donkeys? The only possible reason (I can think of ) to have a donkey is to p--- off your neighbors.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 2 years ago from The Caribbean

      Bill, I know that urban farming is the way to go. Not long ago, I seemed to be having symptoms of a stroke, only to find out it was an allergic reaction to some unsuspecting wheat gluten. Wheat used to be okay until they started to poison it. We all need our own farms and I admire you for being a trendsetter.

    • Homeplace Series profile image

      William Leverne Smith 2 years ago from Hollister, MO

      So happy for you! Sustainable living is something we should all strive for and achieve. Thanks for sharing your positive experiences!! ;-)

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Oh Stacie, I just couldn't' live with all those people. I would be a crazy person. :) Thanks for the visit.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Thank you Alicia! She is a joy already and we love her to pieces.

    • Stacie L profile image

      Stacie L 2 years ago

      Love the lifestyle. I moved back to Long Island NY and they definitely wouldn't allow this in my town...I'd love to have a few chickens...

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      drbj, during the 20s, 30s and 40s, a great part of this nation was urban farming....we have somehow lost our way to convenience. Thanks for sharing about your grandmother. Mine was the same way.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 2 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I'm so happy to hear that you've adopted Payote, Bill. She's going to have a wonderful life with you!

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 2 years ago from south Florida

      My grandmother, bless her heart, was an accomplished urban farmer way back in the 4os before anyone had created that phrase. The corn, tomatoes and other veggies she cultivated were as delicious as any you would find at Trader Joe's. Even when I just think about it, my mouth waters.

    • billybuc profile image
      Author

      Bill Holland 2 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Buildreps, I'm so glad to hear that. I was wondering if other countries were taking up this banner. I'm sure this is just the beginning. Thank you for sharing.

    • Buildreps profile image

      Buildreps 2 years ago from Europe

      Great to see the pictures of the baby goats:) I see around me as well that urban farming is exploding. A new kind of awareness is spreading like a virus. It's almost as if a divine ghost sneaks around touching everyone with her finger to join this new movement. It's great to see the world is changing very rapidly!