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 we took over the farm in the spring of 2019.
About the farmers
We are Chris and Ashley, two beginning farmers who are passionate about growing delicious food the right way and getting it onto the plates of people who live nearby. After years spent reading every farming book in the library, visiting as many farms as possible, and working for two diversified organic vegetable farms (Prairie Drifter Farm and Loon Organics) in varying capacities, we took the plunge and began growing for market on our own. We believe local, organic, sustainably farmed food can change the world and should be accessible to all. And we’re lucky to grow on land in our neighborhood well-suited to that purpose!
Our farming practices
We farm with your health, the health of the soil, and the health of the environment in mind. While we are not certified organic we do follow organic growing practices. All of our farming is done by hand, we support pollinators and minimize soil disturbance, and we do not use chemical pesticides or chemical fertilizers of any kind. We take your safety seriously and have received certification through the U of M's Extension Food Safety Modernization Act produce safety training.
What we grow
In 2021, we are excited to grow a diverse variety of vegetables, fruits, and herbs. We'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, garlic (and scapes), herbs, hot peppers, kale, leeks, little gem lettuce, microgreens, 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
We believe in making good food accessible to all, which is why we have a pay-what-you-can Farm Stand on Monday evenings. Additionally, throughout the season we share our extra produce with local families through the Head Start program (in partnership with the Dangerous Man Community Garden), Alight, and TC Food Justice. If you're a neighborhood organization interested in helping us share our veggies, let us know!
Images © Katie Knapp, The Ag Photographer