Garden City Part II - Kitchen Gardening
08 October 2010|
Once we examine the city as a whole and assess space for growing food, how do we prioritize our growing energy? It seems to me that space where water is available and where people visit daily or regularly would be ideal. Soil, of course, is not such a challenge. San Francisco still generates somewhere around 3,000,000 pounds of organic waste daily that still end up in the landfill (we do compost some 500 - 600 tons of organics a day as well). Therefore soil transformation - the creation of a growing medium would not be a current barrier to growth, all we need to do is take some of our waste stream, combine it appropriately and add water.
In consideration of those criteria, I would advocate for backyards as the primary place to focus our food production. We've begun to study the San Francisco landscape using GIS and satellite maps to attempt to inventory the backyards available in SF. We've arrived at a preliminary figure of 5,500 acres of land (239,900,000 sq. ft.) of area uncovered by structures was found within districts zoned for residential use. This area includes backyards, side yard and front yards, as well as vacant lots. Given the area of San Francisco is approximately 29,900 acres (1,300,000,000 square feet), roughly 18% of the City falls within areas zoned for residential uses could potentially be put into food production.
Well, how much food could we grow in our backyards?