Georgia Organics’ Urban Agriculture Training Program is committed to cultivating urban farmers and gardeners to build healthy, vibrant local food communities. Applicants should possess at least one of the two motivations in participating in this program: 1) to grow/raise food as a business, for supplemental income or as training for future employment; and 2) to increase access of fruits and vegetables in underserved communities. Click Here Meet the Class of 2012!
The training program runs from February thru November with an orientation meeting in January. Participants spend time working hands-on at a diversity of urban agriculture projects in Metro Atlanta and to gather once each month for in-depth workshops and fellowship.
Participants can expect from the program to:
- Experience a variety of urban agriculture methods and styles
- Gain a basic understanding of how to grow and raise food
- Develop relationships with experienced growers and the other people interested in urban agriculture
Each participant spends 10 hours per month volunteering at urban agriculture sites. Participants have the option of picking two to three sites to focus on or rotate to a different site each month. Rotating to a different site each month will require additional coordination by the applicant to match schedules with site hosts.
Training sites for the 2012 Urban Agriculture Program (subject to change):
- Atlanta Community Food Bank
Helps people organize, install and maintain community gardens around Metro Atlanta as well as maintain its own market garden.
- Besmaid Garden Essentials
Bobby Britt has been growing vegetables for over three decades, had a 3 acre market garden in the middle of Dekalb County and sells produce through the Decatur Farmers Market, Marietta Farmers Market and to local chefs.
- Fresh Roots Farm
Urban farm west of Midtown in an old industrial area growing vegetables for CSA, market and restaurants.
- Funny Farm
Home in Stone Mountain turned into an urban farm raising vegetables sold direct to consumers. Specialties include composting, mushrooms and vermiculture.
- Love is Love Farm @ Gaia Gardens
1.5 acre certified organic farm with a heated greenhouse in East Lake serving a 60 member CSA and a weekly farmers market.
- Global Growers Network
The Global Growers Network creates new agricultural opportunities in Georgia for international farmers who were forced to flee their homelands as refugees, due to war, genocide and persecution. The Network uses a whole-systems approach to produce good food, train and place farmers, and create economic opportunity for local communities in Georgia.
Located in Mechanicsville, and its mission is to expose youth to interactive learning of mathematics, science, and the environment through the design and care of an urban organic garden. The garden features solar powered lighting, a rainwater harvesting system, a greenhouse, shade nursery, fruit trees, culinary/medicinal herbs, and compost/recycling stations.
- Oakhurst Community Garden
The Oakhurst Community Garden Project (OCGP) teaches environmental awareness through hands-on gardening and outdoor education programs.
- Oakleaf Mennonite Farm
Half acre urban farm near East Atlanta run through the Mennonite Church and selling vegetables through CSA and a farmers market.
- Patchwork City Farm
Patchwork City Farms (PCF) is a small multi-family owned urban farm located in the West End historic district. Currently, they grow vegetables, herbs and flowers. Their seasonal veggies are sold through local farmers markets.
- Scharko Farm
A small 4-acre vegetable, cut flower and herb farm in Fairburn that market through a CSA and farmers markets.
- Stems ‘N Roots
Suburban market garden in Douglasville with 64 raised beds, 200 square foot greenhouse, 12 ft. x12 ft. High Tunnel, Bee Hives and chickens.
- Third Angel Farm
Located on property owned by the Seventh Day Adventist Church near Stone Mountain, the site has 5,000 square feet under cultivation and places an emphasis on the brix level of their produce.
- Truly Living Well Natural Urban Farms
TLW works to engage the community in developing local food systems through education and food production. They produce vegetables, herbs and fruit on a 4 acre site in the heart of downtown Atlanta with an on-site greenhouse, composting and market. There is another site farmed in East Point and both sites have CSAs available.
In-Depth Monthly Workshops
Once per month, in-depth workshop will be held on Sunday afternoons from 2- 5pm. Site locations will rotate to enhance exposure to a diverse array of operations and people.. Workshop will not only provide practical knowledge on urban agriculture and growing, but will offer participants an opportunity to share experiences and provide fellowship with others in the program The following is an outline of core topics to be covered in the program.
- February: Horticulture 101 & Crop Planning
- March: Seeds, Starts and Transplants
- April: Soil, Nutrients and Fertility
- May: Pest and Disease Management / Crop Rotation
- June: Irrigation, Harvesting and Post harvest Management
- July: Tools and Equipment
- August: Edible Perennials
- September: Compost and Vermiculture
- October: Marketing
- November: Mushrooms
How to Apply
**2012 Application Period Now Closed**
The cost of participation in this program us $300 per person, and there are full scholarships available.