Thank You Very Mulch
Bay View Greenwaste provides fertile ground for San Francisco’s urban agriculture revolution
Just a few years ago, they were abandoned freeways, dilapidated back yards, and institutional dumping grounds. But today, thanks to San Francisco’s urban agriculture renaissance, many of these pockets of underutilized land are being transformed. And one local company — Bay View Greenwaste — is playing a key role, by transforming waste into mulch, and giving it away.
The city’s largest agricultural experiment to date may be the Hayes Valley Farm, which is growing on the former site of a freeway ramp. The ramp was demolished, but the lot sat empty for years as development funding wilted in the recession. Then, in January of 2010, a dedicated group of farmers and permaculturalists began to convert the property into usable farmland.
With a border of mature trees and areas of direct sun, the location was well-suited for gardening. But the soil needed work. It was polluted, choked with weeds, and lacking in nutrients.
Photo by Matt Baume
Originally published on February 22, 2011 at grist.org