Growing Lots Urban farm is a one acre market farm located in the heart of the Seward neighborhood of South Minneapolis. We occupy three previously vacant lots, two of which were parking former parking lots, and have transformed them into highly productive vegetable farms. We work with local chefs, our CSA members and local farmer's markets to sell and distribute our produce. Though we are not certified organic our emphasis is on soil stewardship and environmentally sound practices and adhere to scientifically sound health standards. We care for our soils by intensively composting local, organic waste streams, so not only are we small scale farmers, but small scale organics recyclers. Our compost consists of organic food scraps from Co-op Partners Warehouse, wood chips from local tree services, shredded leaves from the neighborhood, plant debris from Mother Earth Gardens, coffee chaff from local roasters and beer mash from Insight Brewery. We even take in compost offerings from the households of our CSA members. Oh, and we also have to give credit to the hard working draft horses over at Two Pony Gardens in Long Lake. Not only do they offer a free source of composted manure, they plow the field at our rural site where we grow squash and potatoes. The alchemy of building compost is the magic that turns vacant parking lots into an abundant urban farm!
Taya grew up between small town Iowa and the suburbs of Minneapolis. Her passion for sustainable agriculture was instantly sparked when a friend brought her to a nearby organic farm to volunteer while she was attending college in Moorhead, MN. She had no idea that she wanted to be a farmer until she got her hands dirty. Since that pivotal day, nearly a decade ago, Taya has been dedicated to being a farmer. From then onward she has worked on farms big and small, from the red river valley of North Dakota, to 10,000 feet altitude in the Rocky Mountains, to rural Minnesota. Her passion as a farmer extends beyond just being grower, she simply loves feeding people. To her being a farmer is all about being a good neighbor!
Seamus grew up in Lanesboro, Mn. His initial exposure to harvesting his own food came at a young age with his father’s forays for morel mushrooms and trout fishing, and picking blackcaps, gooseberries, currants and raspberries for grandma Iris' pies and jams. His introduction to gardening came from his mom’s practice of keeping flowers and succulents. It is these core events that have shaped his pursuit in understanding the world of plants and how people relate to them. Seamus first started vegetable farming in Taos, New Mexico shortly after graduating from high school and has been actively farming in rural Minnesota since then. His passion for food and relationship to the land has led him to see farming as much more than just the crops. He views farming as a fine craft and an act of immense political and social implication. He also shares Taya’s sentiment that being a good farmer is all about being a good neighbor!
quintessential farm dog
Obie was born on an organic grain farm in Cokato, Minnesota sometime in April of 2017. He comes from generations of hard working Rat Terriers that protect their family’s grain bins from rodents. Though he is only a pup he is already making big waves in the local food movement as the founding member of UFDA ( Urban Farm Dog Association). He enjoys picking peas, digging carrots, chasing bunnies, running in circles and eating strawberries. He also is an adamant cuddle bug. Though he puts forth a tremendous effort protecting the farm from critters, he always seems to find time for snacks and affection.