Over the past year or so, our Urban Farming Assistance Program has grown tremendously!
We have been providing soil health technical assistance to urban agriculture in San Mateo and San Francisco Counties regularly over the past 6 months, with a focus on helping urban farmers and gardeners better understand the current state of their soil and how best to maintain and improve it.
What does that look like?
Boots-on-the-ground education: We have been helping people take soil samples at community gardens and urban farms and then submit them to a lab for testing. Soil testing is a very important part of understanding what is going on below our feet, and can help us improve soil health conditions for improved crop production. It can be daunting to know where to start so we have provided that assistance by teaching people how to take soil samples, and later how to interpret the test results. We then make recommendations for soil health practices based on those results.
Financial assistance: It can be costly to submit soil samples for testing so we have been able to fund the soil tests and this work through our Urban Ag. Conservation grant from the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD).
The gardens/farms featured in these photos are the Tenderloin People’s Garden in San Francisco, the Northridge Community Garden in San Francisco, The East Palo Alto Charter School in East Palo Alto and Hummingbird Farm in San Francisco.