"The urban farms transforming how America’s most vulnerable communities eat"

The microwave plays a significantly more important role to urban farming in Baltimore than you might first imagine.

“Our butternut squash comes from a seed which makes it little and easily microwaveable,” Gwen Kokes, food and farm programme director at Civic Works, told The Independent. “For our [customers] this is really important as it might be too expensive to turn on the gas to cook or the oven might not be working.”

The squash, along with a range of produce, is grown at Real Food Farm, one branch of Civic Works urban service corps program in Maryland’s largest city.

The farm started about a decade ago and spans eight acres in northeast Baltimore with four fields, more than 100 fruit trees, a greenhouse for seedlings, and eight “hoop houses” which, for the uninitiated, are a sort of passive greenhouse with crops planted directly in the soil but sheltered by heavy-duty plastic sheets stretched over frames.

The farm produces 5,000 pounds of fruit and vegetables each year to be sold for reduced cost at farmers’ markets in low-income neighbourhoods across Baltimore. A mobile market, operating out of a box truck, also visits all 12 senior centres in the city.

Read the complete article at www.msn.com.

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