When we opened in 1994, you can be sure that we never thought that we'd be growing our own vegetables or have a farmer on staff.
In March of 2012 we hired a part-time garden manager and built our first 8 raised vegetable beds in a small corner of our parking lot. After we saw the sprouts coming up and the potential for growing our own vegetables and herbs, we leased two adjacent city lots and turned that underdeveloped land into what is now our urban farm. We currently have 50 raised beds of organic soil and we're growing more than 146 different varieties of vegetables, herbs, fruits and edible flowers. We also have two busy beehives in the corner of our urban farm.
In 2016 we harvested close to 3,000 pounds of produce from our farm. Some of our favorite crops have been Watermelon Radishes, Tuscan Kale, Chinese Red Noodle Beans, Bright Lights Swiss Chard, Green Zebra Tomatoes, Rosa Bianca Eggplant, Japanese Edamame, Pattypan Squash, Encore Mixed Greens, Sylvetta Arugula, Purple Haze Carrots, Chioggia Beets, Genovese Basil, Butternut Squash, and Nasturtium.
Big Delicious Planet is proud of our partnership with Windy City Harvest's Apprenticeship Program. Each summer since 2012, we have hosted a student to get hands-on experience working in an urban farm. The paid interns work alongside our farmer doing planting, maintenance and harvesting.
Do you have a group interested in a tour of our urban farm? We've hosted many tours for schools and universities interested in urban agriculture and sustainability. Contact us for more information!
Photos by Anna Zajac + BDP