Finding Land

Courtesy of Dan B., Portland OR
I have had great luck finding small backyard plots to farm.  Could be that people here in Portland are just more open to the idea…If this is your first year, try to find maybe a few thousand square feet within walking distance of where you live.  Choose to grow the classic high  value SPIN crops that are fast maturing and lend themselves well to smaller spaces.  Less space to potatoes, squash and broccoli.  More space to salad greens, carrots, radishes, beets, trellised crops. Do it well, keep it extra tidy, show it off, get some press.  Next year you’ll have people calling and emailing asking if you want to use their yard.

Winter Growing Mache in OR

Courtesy of Josh V., Portland OR
The one green I’ve had consistent good luck with, uncovered, through the entire winter, is mache.  This is not a productive plant, but it is very tasty and if you let it go to seed it will establish itself as a winter “weed,” and it’s a welcome one in my plot.