The BOOM of Rooftop Growing
I grew up in Brooklyn in the late 60’s and I remember sneaking up to the rooftop at our apartment on Ocean Parkway. The roof was this magical oasis far away from our 2 bedroom, 800 square foot apartment, where you could escape to on a hot summer day. The teenagers would sunbathe and maybe there was a plastic kiddie pool full of cool water for us — lukewarm was more like it! Occasionally there were some potted plants, tomatoes, and whatever else could live on the scolding black tar. And that was the rooftop.
A lot has changed over the years and the roof has become prime real estate, but I NEVER would have imagined it would be for farming! Check out this story from www.newyork.com. I was amazed at what’s going on and I’m proud of the visionaries who are making this happen.
Over the last few years, more than a few rooftop farms have sprouted up across New York City. Mostly they’re atop warehouses, which offer the square footage needed for large-scale farming, but you can also find them crowning restaurants (you can’t get more locally sourced than that) and hotels, and even a production company masquerading as a hotel has gotten into the act. With ample irrigation, effort and know-how, just about any sky-high space can be turned into a farm as verdant as anything two hours’ drive from the city. What’s more, the elevation of rooftop farms means that they tend to get direct sunlight, a key concern in growing produce. To hop on the bandwagon, check out these six pioneering rooftop farms in NYC, along with what they grow and the best places to buy their produce.