Backyard Polyculture: City Life

Backyard Polyculture; City Life

Polycultures ( word first used in 1915) involve growing many plants of different species in the same area, often in a way that imitates nature. Living in the city with limited space is challenging but with a small sunny area and a couple of containers growing food is possible.

Renting  a garden plot with friends or family at a community garden can be feasible.

Scientists  help explain how humans contribute to climate change by using the greenhouse effect. Scientists have concluded air pollution, ocean acidification, sea level rise, drought, the threat of species extinction like monarch butterflies and bees in addition to extreme weather events are some of the most pressing and challenging global issues of our time.

Whether you garden on a balcony or a community garden for human connection, growing your own food is empowering.

Put your hands in the earth.

Backyard gardening will reduce your environmental impact and improve your mental health. Grow a beautiful patch of flowers and save the bees and butterflies.

By volunteering at local farms and getting involved in workshops like Urban Soul Farmer, you begin to see that there is science behind traditional and modern gardening techniques.

Food grown without pesticides and herbicides will help decrease unnecessary air and water pollutants.

George Washington Carver (1860– January 5, 1943), was an American botanist and inventor. Carver worked on improving soils, growing crops with low inputs, and using species that fixed nitrogen. His passion was to improve the lives of farmers as a leader in promoting


Dr. Carver understood the importance of working with nature like the indigenous farming systems. Integrated systems are more adaptable to climate change and resilient towards pests and disease.

Polycultures provide many advantages such as better soil quality, less soil erosion, and more stable yields.

Urban gardening is a way to help the environment and in return you get free food, exercise and nutrition.

As Noble Peace Prize winner Wangari Maathai states, “Climate change is life or death. It is the new global battlefield. It is being presented as if it is the problem of the developed world. But it’s the developed world that has precipitated global warming.”

Ya dig?!

Grow compatible plants in a small sunny section of your yard and see how wellness finds you. Gardening  can change the way you connect with your plants and change the way you view the world.


Zoe Blaq

Zoe Blaq is an urban gardener and storyteller who is an educator and healing arts advocate.


2 thoughts on “Backyard Polyculture: City Life

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