What's the most important ingredient for local food?  Well, according to many with whom we've visited, the answer is COMPOST!  As described in Wikipedia, compost is, "plant matter that has been decomposed and recycled as a fertilizer and soil amendment. Compost is a key ingredient in organic farming."  To make compost at our home, we've invested in a 6 cubic foot tumbling composter manufactured by Suncast.  We're adding shredded leaves, grass clippings, fruit and veggie scraps, and limited table scraps to our system.

With the fresh compost, we have planted a variety of herbs including: dill, rosemary, parsley, chives, and coriander/cilantro (two spices which come from the same plant).  We've also planted basil for early summer pesto as well as (hanging) tomatoes and green beans (on a trellis from pots).

Perhaps our most ambitious new project is to increase our local protein through eggs from free range chickens.  We've moved a coop into our back yard, and created a run under the porch to protect them from the heat of summer.

To grow beyond the confines of home food production, we've also begun discussions focusing on local food systems.  A fantastic example that we've been studying is Growing Power from Milwaukee, WI.  We've also received support and encouragement from Mary Hendrickson with the University of Missouri Extension Service.

And we would be remiss if we didn't provide a 'shout out' to the original Cincinnati Urban Farm that was founded in the Westwood Neighborhood in the summer of 2010.  Still growing strong, the Cincinnati Urban Farm benefits from a tremendous network of urban gardeners.