Urban Agriculture And How To Grow A Rooftop Garden

Urban Agriculture is the art and science of growing food in cities or highly populated areas with the goal of the grower eating the food, or for the grower distributing the food to those around him/her.

Here are a few facts about urban agriculture or rooftop garden growing:

  • Roughly 15% of the food in the world is grown in urban areas
  • There are currently more than 40 community gardens in Washington DC
  • Just about any vegetable that will grow in a typical garden in your backyard will also do well growing in a container

8 Tips For Success Growing In A Container

  1. Select Your Crop: Decide what you want to plant, then choose one of many vegetables that grow well in containers.
  2. Choose Growing Media: Have to provide nutrients, physical support, and allow it to drain well. You can use synthetic or soilless mixes, as they do well with container gardening.
  3. Pick Your Container:  Just about every container can be used to grow vegetable plants.
  4. Prepare Drainage: Your container garden must drain adequately to get the best results out of what you are growing. Add 1 inch of rough gravel to the bottom of container before adding your soil
  5. Seeding or Transplanting: You can decide if you want to grow each plant separately by starting from the seed, or if you want to start from other plant parts (also known as germinating). If you decide to do germinating, it requires 4 to 8 weeks before transplanting your seeds to a container.
  6.  Time To Fertilize: Although many potting soils include time-release fertilizer, the easiest and best way to fertilize container plants is by preparing a diluted nutrient solution and pour it onto the soil mix.
  7. Check for Diseases: Examine the plant leaves periodically for fruit insects and diseases.
  8. Harvest Crops: Pick your vegetables at the peak maturity for best maximum taste and flavor.

DC Urban Agriculture Infographic, created by The Bozzuto Group

DC Urban Agriculture Infographic created by The Bozzuto Group

Famous Washington DC Agriculturists

Michelle Obama: 1st First Lady since Eleanor Roosevelt to plant a garden at the White House

Eleanor Roosevelt: Planted the first Victory Garden at the White House

Thomas Jefferson: Supported agriculture as a national movement


Washington DC Gardening Resources

Urban Sustainable DC  (Urban agricultural supply and community outreach in Washington DC)


Ginkgo Gardens


Frager’s Hardware Store



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