This is Elyssa, the farmer. She's been the hands and the heart, the brains and the brawn behind California Street for the last 2+ years.
And here's Cory, Elyssa's sister. She's an ideas person who helps out with the marketing, storytelling, and occasional pizza party planning the farm requires. She likes to harvest, too.
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
Elyssa (she/her) is the farmer at California Street Farm. She's thrilled to be growing food right here in Northeast, MPLS! Before managing California Street Farm she worked on various vegetable and livestock farms in both Minnesota and Massachusetts for several years, including a farm running on literal horse-power. Her goal with California Street is to create a space of belonging and learning, all while growing nutritious, accessible food and respecting the soil she's working in. Elyssa looks forward to seeing folks around the neighborhood this season! When she's not at the farm or at the farmers' market, you may see her riding around on bicycle or enjoying her favorite restaurants and bars in NE.
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.
What we grow
In 2024, we're 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, 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.
Images © Cory Eull