The farm in your backyard (literally): Moon Rabbit Urban Farm (UPDATE)

UPDATE (Saturday, August 3): The Moon Rabbit Urban Farm has moved its farmstand to (Ravenna Blog sponsor) Boulevard Grocery (2007 NE Ravenna Blvd) on Saturdays and Sundays.

Hyperlocal sharecropping.

Ariana Taylor-Stanley and Austin LeSure are farmers — with crops, chickens, CSA shares, and a farmstand — but with very little land of their own. Or nine or so different farms, depending on how you look at it.

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Moon Rabbit Urban Farm’s first farmstand day back on June 20 was a wet one, but Ariana Taylor-Stanley and Austin LeSure (at center and right, respectively) are all smiles as they help a customer.

Last year, Ariana and Austin put flyers up around the neighborhood, in search of Land Partners: Local property owners who would allow them grow food on the property, in return for a share of that food.

Nine property owners took them up on it, and the Moon Rabbit Urban Farm was born.

Between 18th and 39th Avenues NE, and NE 55th and 105th Streets, the various plots that make up the summation of Moon Rabbit Urban Farm are located. Ariana and Austin care for and maintain the plots, share the harvest with the property owners on a weekly basis, then use the rest of the produce to give to their CSA subscribers and sell at their farmstand.

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If you are interested in purchasing some of there uberlocal bounty, Moon Rabbit Urban Farm has a farmstand open on Thursdays from 4:30 to 7:30 PM (or until they run out of produce) in front of Dahn Yoga & Tai Chi (next to Mamma Melina), just steps from where the Burke-Gilman Trail crosses 25th Avenue NE. Look for the blue tent. (See the UPDATE at the top of the post for the farmstand’s new location and days.)

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Running an urban farm business like Moon Rabbit is not entirely new to the city of Seattle: This article on urban farms from the Seattle Times in 2010 describes the workings of City Grown (Northwest Seattle), Magic Bean Farm (West Seattle), Seattle Market Gardens (South Seattle).

In that article, Bryan Stevens of the Department of Planning and Development explains that within the city of Seattle, “anyone can grow and sell food on site or at a farmers market as long as no plot exceeds 4,000 square feet.”

Interested in becoming a future Land Partner yourself? Contact Ariana and Austin at moonrabbitfarm@gmail.com.

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You can see photos of Ariana working one of the backyard farms here (part one) and here (part 2), at photographer Cori G. Keady’s website.

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