An ordinance that would allow more urban gardens and neighborhood farm stands is on the ballot in Sacramento. The vote is slated for March 17, and supporters are hoping it comes up green. There is another ordinance in the formation stages in Sacramento, which would offer a property tax break for turning vacant lots into gardens.
Ask an urban gardener like Mike Viscuso why Sacramento should enact the urban ag ordinance scheduled to come March 17 before the City Council – a set of zoning and other expansions that would allow more urban gardens and neighborhood farm stands – and he’s as likely to talk about connection as about his purple cabbage and Long Island Brussels sprouts.
“Think of a mother with two kids, who comes home from work and has to get something for dinner,” said Viscuso, weeding the tenth-of-an-acre Oak Park patch that he cultivates through his nonprofit, Urban Sustainable Solutions. “Ordinarily, she has to get her kids ready, pile them into a car and drive to a store before she can even start dinner.”
“But what if all she had to do was put some shoes on the kids, walk around the neighborhood and buy fresh food from her neighbors? All of a sudden, people who didn’t ordinarily engage would be engaging. All of a sudden, she’d have an extra hour at the end of the day, or at the end of the month, an extra $40.”