Undercover: City Farmer

City Farmer – Advertures in Urban Food Growing

Author: Lorraine Johnson

ISBN 978-1-55365-519-0

Greystone Books

265 pages.


Reviewed by Stephanie Yuen

As one less than casual spring time ‘potter’ but a serious plant lover who hopelessly stays on the trial and error stage after years of impulsive practice with big and small pots of green stuff, there have been far too much herbs and plants victims under my never green thumbs. When a book like City Farmer comes along, what excuse do I have not to flip through the pages?

As I was grasping in as much tips and guidelines from Ms. Johnson, the guru in gardening and city planting and a well-respected food and gardening activist, I realized I was entering into a world which was so close to us and yet seemingly unreachable, perhaps for someone like myself.

And then I read about real life stories of urban farmers, some of them started the path with no real experience but intense feeling about the concept of feeding ourselves and our families with food we grew in the balcony, rooftops and community gardens. Educational and inspirational, the experiences of these guerrilla urban farmers are also interesting and revealing at the same time.

City Farmer is the telescope that draws the reality of urban planting to readers, and how approachable an urban oasis in a concrete forest is!

The book is also a wake-up call telling us the positive and negative reality of the food world we are living in and how we can change that by doing the right thing. There’s hope for folks like me who in the near future, will be cooking with tomatoes, beans and basils plucked off from our own balcony!