This is a great article by Melissa Denchak about Sheryll Durant, a one-woman gardening dynamo who has helped to transform the urban farming movement in New York. In the process, she has helped to not only introduce people to gardening, but to also give people a way to provide healthy veggies for their families.
Melissa begins her article with:
“Most people don’t move to New York City and become farmers. Sheryll Durrant certainly wasn’t planning to when she left Jamaica for Manhattan in 1989. She got her undergraduate degree in business from the City University of New York’s Baruch College and spent the next 20 years in marketing. Then, when the 2008 financial crisis hit, Durrant decided to leave her job and try something new: volunteering at a community garden in her Brooklyn neighborhood.It wasn’t exactly uncharted terrain for this farmer’s daughter. Growing up in Kingston, Durrant regularly helped her parents harvest homegrown fruits and vegetables. ‘But it didn’t dawn on me that that was what I wanted to do,” she said. Volunteering in the Brooklyn garden reminded her of her roots. “I would plant flowers or melons and that sense of putting your hand in the soil and becoming a part of that green space flooded back to me,’ she explained.
Fast-forward to today. Durrant is a leader in New York’s flourishing urban farming movement, which includes more than 600 community gardens under the city’s GreenThumb program, plus hundreds more run by other groups across the five boroughs. A food justice advocate with a certificate from Farm School NYC, she’s also a “master composter” and a community garden educator and she does outreach work for Farming Concrete, a data collection project that measures, among other things, how much urban farms and gardens produce.”
To read the rest of the article and to learn about urban gardening strategies, click on the Urban Farmer Transforms Community Into Thriving Local Food Haven link below.