Urban Agriculture
University of California
Urban Agriculture

Welcome!

Are you interested in starting an urban farm?  Seeking details on how to raise backyard chickens and bees? Looking for information on laws, zoning and regulations that relate to urban agriculture? We offer resources on small-scale production, including soil, planting, irrigation, pest management, and harvesting, as well as information on the business of farming, such as how to market urban farm products. 

After you explore the site, please complete our survey! We’d like to know if you found what you were looking for and hear your suggestions.

Benefits of urban agriculture
Urban agriculture can positively impact communities in many ways. It can improve access to healthy food, promote community development, and create jobs. A number of cities in California, including San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego have recently updated municipal policies to facilitate urban agriculture, due to strong community interest. If you’d like to learn more about some documented impacts of urban agriculture, see Research.
 
Challenges of urban agriculture
Despite the benefits associated with urban agriculture, there are many challenges. Urban farmers routinely face issues related to zoning, soil, water access, and profitability, as a few examples. At the community level, noise and nuisance issues can come into play. This site is intended to share the research on both benefits and challenges, and best practices on how to address those as a farmer or local decision maker. 
 
Who we are
UC ANR is part of the nation’s land grant university system, with more than a century of experience providing research-based knowledge to California farmers. This site offers resources that we’ve identified as most useful for urban farmers and local decision makers and stakeholders. Additionally, we are identifying gaps where resources need to be developed. Our team includes more than 15 experts, ranging from UC farm advisors, to agricultural economists, to urban planners and policy makers.

WOW Farm, Richmond, CA below BART commuter line

What is urban agriculture?
It means different things to different people (See our working definition here). From backyard chicken-raising and beekeeping, to small-scale commercial farming on the edge of cities, urban agriculture is increasingly popular and is often in the news.

UC ANR Urban Agriculture Blog

Evaluating Regional Food Resilience in the San Francisco Bay Area

SF Bay Area Development Patterns

While the provision of clean water, removal of wastes, and infrastructure for other basic human necessities are considered in the planning of modern development in the United States, the provision of food is rarely a consideration. More often,...

Posted on Sunday, October 1, 2017 at 5:49 PM
  • Author: N. Claire Napawan, Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture
  • Author: Ellen Burke, Assistant Professor of Landscape Architecture California Polytechnic Institute, San Luis Obispo

August 19th is National Honey Bee Day: Dr. Elina NiƱo reminds us to help honey bees cope with pests

rooftopbeekeeping

National Honey Bee Day is celebrated on the third Saturday of every August. This year it falls on Saturday the 19th. If you use integrated pest management, or IPM, you are probably aware that it can solve pest problems and reduce the use of pesticides...

Posted on Thursday, August 17, 2017 at 1:02 PM
  • Author: Stephanie Parreira, UC Statewide IPM Program

Urban Farming and Water Conservation: A Way of Life on the City Farm

Raised Bed Irrigation - Treasure Island Job Corps Farm

Reyna Yagi (ryagi@ucanr.edu), Northern California Urban Agriculture Program Coordinator, University of California Cooperative Extension - Alameda and Contra Costa Counties It has been a banner year for water in California. The above-average...

Posted on Tuesday, July 25, 2017 at 1:45 PM

UC Food and Agriculture Blogs

Caring for Citrus in Fall

Infestation of brown rot on lemon. (Jack Kelly Clark)

Citrus trees need care throughout the year, including cultural practices to keep trees healthy and pest management. During the fall season, several pests can attack citrus trees in many California regions.  Brown Rot Monitor for this disease by...

Posted on Monday, October 16, 2017 at 4:28 PM

UC IPM Hiring for Pesticide Safety Educator

Personal protection equipment. (Mike Poe)

The UC Statewide IPM Program is hiring an Pesticide Safety Educator to coordinate with UC ANR advisors and specialists, government agencies, professional organizations, and others to plan, develop and deliver local pesticide safety educational programs...

Posted on Wednesday, October 11, 2017 at 1:59 PM

Gnats on Houseplants

Fungus gnat adult caught in yellow sticky trap. (Jack Kelly Clark)

If you have house or office plants and have ever seen small, dark-colored insect swarming around them, your plants could have fungus gnats. Fungus gnats are tiny flies that as adults, resemble mosquitoes. Fungus gnats don't bite people, but their...

Posted on Monday, October 9, 2017 at 9:55 AM

Advances in Pistachio Production Short Course offered Nov. 14-16

pistachios

UC Agriculture and Natural Resources will be offering a three-day, multi-topic Pistachio Production Short Course on Nov. 14-16, 2017. Held in Visalia, this course will provide participants with the latest information and research from several...

Posted on Wednesday, October 4, 2017 at 11:54 AM

UC ANR Global Food Initiative fellows take aim at food insecurity and obesity

UC ANR's 2017-18 Global Food Initiative fellows

Three University of California students have been selected by UC Agriculture and Natural Resources as Global Food Initiative (GFI) fellows for 2017-18. UC Berkeley graduate students Kristal Caballero, Elsbeth Sites and Sonya Zhu are the GFI...

Posted on Tuesday, October 3, 2017 at 5:04 PM
Webmaster Email: vtborel@ucanr.edu