Best Urban Farm

Green Faerie Farm

An urban farm lacks space and therefore has a narrow margin of grossness error. If not immaculately maintained, the density can breed stench and chaos. But in a 6,000-square-foot yard, Jim Montgomery and Mateo Rutherford manage to grow an astonishing assortment of produce and keep chickens, rabbits, goats, and bees, all while remaining on the urbagrarian paradise side of that thin line. Fruit trees and vines surround the house and vegetable beds full of asparagus, leeks, potatoes, squash, celery, beans, corn, tomatoes, cucumbers, onions, cabbage, kale, and lettuce are laid out in back. The animal pens are generously distanced from the house. Three times a day, Jim (sometimes with the help of interns) brings out his Oberhaslis (a kind of goat) to be milked. A short walk down the vegetable bed-lined path leads to the milking room, a sort of mini cathedral with goats as gods, complete with sink and refrigerator. Unlike many East Bay urban farms, Green Faerie is not a nonprofit, hypothetical example of something. It’s just a real homestead.

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