News & Press: Updates

Big Muddy Urban Farm - thanks for joining NAM!

Tuesday, March 8, 2016   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Kelly Koepsell
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Big Muddy Urban Farm - home

 

Who We Are:
We are a group of urban growers passionate about cultivating food, working collectively and collaboratively, and sharing our skills with others. Our main goal is to create a new source of naturally-grown produce and herbs in Omaha, as well as foraged wild edibles and encourage others to grow their own food by offering opportunities for skill building and volunteers. We all reside in Midtown and near-North Omaha. Our growing spaces are throughout North Omaha.

History:
In Winter 2011 we met, formed our collective, wrote and signed our Partnership Agreement and started Big Muddy Urban Farm. For our first season, we offered a 24-share CSA and enjoyed participating in several local markets. We explored relationships with various locally-focused restaurants and other organizations. We partnered with two community gardens and worked with many young folks to share skills on food cultivation and self-sufficiency. And we survived the worst drought in many years! A huge thank you to all of those who have supported us and enabled us to get to this point.

Guiding Principles:
Naturally-grown produce:
While we are not a "certified organic" operation everything we grow is done by using organic methods. We begin with non-GMO and organic seed, care for our crops without the use of pesticides or other synthetic chemicals, and implement soil and land-nurturing methods. If you'd like to know more ask us!

Food security:
Food security is very important, especially today when so many people are food insecure or struggling with their health and well-being due to foods that are detrimental to our health. We think small-scale urban farming operations are a very important piece of the food security puzzle. As things continue to change (climate, economies, etc.) we will need to rely more on food grown closer to home, or even at home. We are trying to help by growing intensively in small spaces, taking good care of our soil and land, and selling our produce to our surrounding community. We also want to encourage and inspire others to grow and produce their own!

Community:
Farming in an urban area allows us to interact a lot with our community, and relationships are very important to us. We want people to feel empowered while being a part of our CSA, volunteering with us, learning new skills at a workshop, and then potentially starting their own projects (maybe a backyard garden, maybe building a chicken coop... keeping bees...).

Food is a great way to bring people together. Even more, we think it is really important to collaborate with and partner with groups in our community. We partner with the Gifford Park Community Garden and No More Empty Pots, among other local groups. Please consider supporting them and any of our friends (listed on the "Things We Love" page). 

Collectively-run:
"The process is as important as the outcome." As important as growing delicious produce in the city is to us, working with others on this project in a horizontal method is also equally important. Decisions at and about Big Muddy Urban Farm are decided collectively and in good faith by all members of the collective. Members are defined by those that demonstrate a willingness to participate in collective meetings, volunteer on the farm, and engage in events hosted by Big Muddy Urban Farm.

Skill-sharing:
Growing your own food is really important in today's world. We will host volunteers on our farm regularly and offer workshops throughout the growing season. Workshops will be based on the skills of the collective members. Is there a particular urban farm-related skill you'd like to learn? By sharing knowledge we strengthen our communities and give each other a sense of our own collective power. 

Creativity:
We highly value creative people and creative ideas. Growing food in an urban setting requires a lot of creativity and flexibility. We are constantly adapting our methods and harvesting input from others.