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Suburban gardener maximizes her space for growing food

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Evolving stories About Growing Food in a Big City

Suburban gardener maximizes her space for growing food

Cassandra West

Debbie slider

Master gardener Debbie Kong

Debbie Kong, a master gardener and gardening educator in Chicago's western suburbs, gave us a tour recently of her spread. Debbie decided this year to expand her “farmette,” as we fondly refer to her garden, and use more of her land to grow food. She and her daughter, who's known as Little Green Girl, worked hard this year to grow as much food in as little space as possible, she says.

Debbie planted her garden thoughtfully, planning every square foot like an architect trying to get the maximum use from a small lot on which to erect a tall building. To do that, she took advantage of some vertical farming concepts. And what is she growing? Watermelons, potatoes, strawberries, beans, tomatoes, eggplant, lettuces and a variety of rabbit-repelling plants.

Here’s a tour of one section of her urban farm:

A tour of Debbie's garden from Cassandra West on Vimeo.