About the farm
California Street Farm is an urban farm located in Northeast Minneapolis producing fresh, local vegetables for the neighborhood. The farm is located on land leased from the owners of the California Building, and was originally founded by Jim Bovino and Jillia Pessenda back in 2012. A few different people have grown on the land over the years, and the farm was reinvigorated in 2019 by Ashley Thorfinnson and Chris Barth.
About the farmer
This year, the veggies at California Street Farm are being grown under the watchful eye of Elyssa (she/her). I’m thrilled to be growing food right here in Northeast, MPLS. I’ve been learning to farm on various vegetable and livestock farms in both Minnesota and Massachusetts for the last four years, including a farm running on literal horse-power. My goal for my time at California Street is to create a space of belonging and learning, all while growing nutritious, accessible food and respecting the soil I’m working in. I look forward to seeing you around the neighborhood this season!
My farming practices
I farm with your health, the health of the soil, and the health of the environment in mind. While I am not certified organic, I do follow organic growing practices. All of my farming is done by hand, I support pollinators and minimize soil disturbance, and I do not use chemical pesticides or chemical fertilizers of any kind.
What I grow
In 2022, I'm excited to grow a diverse variety of vegetables, fruits, and herbs. I'll be bringing the following to market this season: arugula, baby kale, basil, beans, beets, bell peppers, cabbage, carrots, celeriac, chard, cherry tomatoes, cilantro, cucumbers, eggplant, fennel, herbs, hot peppers, kale, leeks, little gem lettuce, peas, potatoes, radishes, rutabaga, salad mix, scallions, shallots, shishito peppers, spinach, summer squash, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, turnips, watermelons, winter squash, and zucchini.
Sharing the harvest
I believe in making good food accessible to all, which is why I have a pay-what-you-can Farm Stand on Monday evenings. Additionally, throughout the season I share our extra produce with local families through Every Meal (in partnership with the Dangerous Man Community Garden) and TC Food Justice. If you're a neighborhood organization interested in helping share veggies, let me know!
Images © Chris Barth and Cory Eull