I have been in love with the idea of urban farming since I discovered it was a thing about ten years ago. I never did it. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I had all kinds of plans for where the chicken coop would go, what plants would go where, maybe even get a goat to clear out the brush behind the property. It never happened. After all, doing something like that is a big step. It ties you down to your land, it might make your neighbors unhappy, and you might fail.
I don’t like to fail.
The idea crept into almost all of my stories. I wouldn’t intentionally put an urban farm-like setting in the story, but somehow, something urban farmesque would show up as I was writing. That I tend to write about marginalized populations might be part of it. After all, people who are not part of the mainstream have to find alternative ways to live. Having an alternative way to live makes people more marginalized by the mainstream. It’s a vicious cycle.
Last summer, we moved from the property we’d been living on for 15 years to our ‘dream home’. Whether it is our dream home or not, it is our dream home, because I’m not moving again. This place is twice the size of our previous residence, both the house and the property. We are now on half an acre, walking distance to downtown.
So, with an address that probably won’t change until I die, and enough room to do something, I will start my urban farm today. I can get a real feel for how my characters actually do this, rather than just imagining from research and the few herbs I’ve been able to grow successfully. The property is filled with gardening beds, all of which are emtpy except for trees and shrubs. I’ve got a clean slate to work with, and I’m super excited!