Testing urban farm soil, including for lead

You can learn how to get the lead out—a good thing for soil and people’s health—when Alyssa Zearley of CFAES’ School of Environment and Natural Resources presents “Testing Soils for Urban Agriculture” from 10:30 a.m. to noon, Saturday, Feb. 16, during the annual conference of the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA) in Dayton.

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‘Beacon of hope’ raises fish and veggies

The Columbus Urban Farm Tour Series continues with a stop at Project AquaStar, an expanded aquaculture and vegetable farm, from 10:30 a.m. to noon Aug. 23.

Located at St. Stephen’s Community House in Columbus, the farm produces, among other things, herbs, vegetables and tilapia through aquaponics. By improving food security and health awareness, it’s “become a beacon of hope in the Linden community,” according to the house’s website.

Free admission. Find out more.

Homeless garden tour in Columbus

See the food and good growing in Columbus’s Friends of the Homeless Garden when the Columbus Urban Farm Tour Series hosts a visit called “Urban Community Garden Serving Homeless Men” from noon to 1:30 p.m. Aug. 19. Admission is free. Find further details. (Photo: Getty Images.)

Growing a ‘flourishing neighborhood resource’

On Saturday, July 14, Magic House Farm, which spans a half acre of formerly vacant lots in Columbus’s Franklinton neighborhood, will host the next stop in the Columbus Urban Farm Tour Series. You’re invited, the tour flier says, to see “how this urban oasis in a distressed neighborhood has grown from a small one-man operation to a flourishing and necessary neighborhood resource.” Free admission. Read more. See the series schedule.

Tuesday: ‘Lessons in sustainability’ from Columbus craft brewery

The next monthly Environmental Professionals Network (EPN) breakfast program, “Land Grant to Land-Grant: Lessons in Sustainability from a Brewery in Our Backyard,” will feature Columbus’s Land-Grant Brewing Company, a small urban craft brewery.

The speaker, Land-Grant sustainability manager Vincent Valentino, will share “successes, challenges and failures that the brewery has faced in its first year of pursuing sustainability,” the event description says. He’ll also “talk about their partnership with urban farmers, Columbus community groups and where they want to go next.”

The event is tomorrow, Tuesday, Jan. 9, from 7:15 to 9:30 a.m. on Ohio State’s Columbus campus. Read more and register.

EPN is a service of CFAES’s School of Environment and Natural Resources.

In Mansfield, the ‘cutting edge of urban agriculture’

Ohio State’s Mansfield campus now has a microfarm. It’s thanks to assistant professor Kip Curtis, recent graduate Tyler Arter, student interns, and help from 30 students in CFAES’s Environment, Economy, Development and Sustainability major. Read the story in Farm and Dairy.

The third-of-an-acre farm includes two high tunnels and about 50 raised beds. “We hope to begin to model the cutting edge of urban agriculture and demonstrate its promise for an evolving food system,” Curtis said in an Ohio State Mansfield press release.

Funding came from a $100,00 grant from Ohio State’s President and Provost’s Council on Sustainability, which, according to its website, “provides strategic advisement on the integration of sustainable practices, programs and projects” throughout the university. (Photo: Ohio State Mansfield.)