What is the Urban Farm?
The Urban Farm
An Environmental Showcase Home
in the Heart of Phoenix Arizona.
The Urban Farm is the home of Greg Peterson and is located in the middle of Phoenix, AZ. It is generally defined as an environmental showcase home, which sports a primarily edible landscape, 60 fruit trees, rainwater and greywater harvesting, two kinds of solar panel – one for creating my own electricity and one for heating the house – a patio that is primarily made from reclaimed materials, an d an outdoor kitchen and shower.
For several years the Urban Farm has regularly been opened for tours and classes. The intent of these events is to share with visitors different green lifestyle choices available. Our events include: classes on gardening, composting, keeping chickens, permaculture, edible landscape design, greywater and rainwater and the occasional house concert. The Urban Farm sits on a typical urban lot that is 80 feet wide and 160 feet deep. Both the yard and the home have been recreated to emulate as green of a lifestyle as possible.
Here are a few of the things you will see at the Urban Farm:
• Front Yard – edibles everywhere.
Fruit trees include apples, pears, peaches, loquats, oranges, lemons, limes, limequats, figs and mesquite. Vegetables this time of year include root crops, leaf crops, brassicas (broccoli), peas, and lots of flowers.
• Roof – for solar.
– Photovoltaic solar panels. These panels are designed to generate 40% of my power needs.
– Thermal Heating Panels – Works like your car sitting in the sun. Box heats up then we transfer that heat into the house.
• Backyard – Besides there being edibles everywhere in the back you will also find:
– Chickens. Our chickens are hens only, no roosters allowed as I value my sleep. Chickens in your landscape will eat bugs, weeds and weed seeds, till the soil, add fertilizer and of course give you food. Our chickens are pets therefore we only eat their eggs.
– Chicken Tractor portable chicken coop. Ours is currently housing a hen and three chicks.
– Outdoor kitchen so that we take the heat outside when we cook and so that the wash water from the sink goes into the landscape.
– Outdoor shower – primarily used for watering the landscape.
– Reclaimed material patio. The back patio is constructed of many reused materials from the urbanite (reused concrete) to the reused bricks and poles that hold up the patio.
• Inside – Whenever we remodel inside we use available green products and technologies.
– We have installed two tubular skylights in the house, one in the living room and one in the kitchen. Both are placed to reduce the need for using a light bulb during the day.