This annotation was created by Maria Frank. 

Field Guides to Food

Growing Community Resilience: Empowering Neighborhoods with Tools of Design for the Northern Climate (summary & metadata)

The intent of this handbook is to provide interested urban farmers, gardeners, and community groups with a basic design primer for creating a pocket farm, community garden, or community supported agriculture (CSA). I have gathered basic components of urban agriculture, researched multiple precedents, and offered a design eye about how to arrange them, what to consider, and how each element might be constructed, perceived, or used by farmers and their surrounding community. I also included preliminary questions a designer initially asks upon seeing a site for the first time and tailored them to the needs of urban agriculture. Lastly, unless otherwise noted, all ideas and plants suggested are for the Northern climate (hardy to USDA Zone 4).

Quick Facts:
  • Author: Anna Biebrauer
  • Published: 2012, CURA, Univ of Minnesota
  • Intended audience: community organizers, urban ag advocates, urban farmers, entrepreneurs, the public
  • Goals / purpose: To provide a basic learning kit for new urban farmers for creating a
    pocket farm, community garden, or community supported agriculture
  • Methods - How would someone know they could trust this?
    • The author's expertise in design combined with her interest in gardening & raising vegetables. Methods are not well-described but the presentation of information is extremely well-done and clear.
  • From 1 (not very well)–4 (very well), how well does this source of food knowledge:
    • Engage an adequate range of perspectives and types of knowledge? (3)
    • Translate between diverse perspectives? (2)
    • Address conflicts across perspectives? (3)
    • Generate useful information for those affected by the issues addressed? (4)
    • Include an adequate range of relevant stakeholders throughout the knowledge-creation process? (2)
    • Help users of this knowledge source learn from each other? (4)
    • Allow users of this knowledge source to put what they learn into action? (4)
    • Consider the larger context as necessary? (4)
  • What is useful, meaningful, surprising, or a problem? Questions?
    • The level of depth and detail evident in this report is meaningful, surprising, and useful.
  • What do you think could or should be done with this source of knowledge?
  • What has already been done?
  • How should we keep track of what this knowledge does as it circulates in the world?
  • What connections would you like to see made to other information / people / organizations?

See for this and other resources from CURA.

(ID# 1011)

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