FARMACY is a distributed urban farming system that is designed to improve environmental health and augment biodiversity in addition to producing edibles. This system is optimized for yummy urban foods (U-foods), i.e. new foods appropriate for the challenging urban context. The AgBag addresses the issue of little or no access to soil, little or no space, compromised air and water quality among other challenges. Further than improving air and water quality, its value lays in improving the quality of life for humans and non-human organisms alike in the urban environment – aiming for a resilient and healthy BiodiverCITY. Farmacy and its AgBag are a radical systems design approach to urban food production, developed specifically for the urban environment. The U-foods are curated and cultivated for their extremely high nutrition value, including the colorful alpha-carotenes, polyphenols and micronutrients that equip an urban body to cope with the assault of urban pollutants. We’ve also selected foods and developed food products that have high commercial value, and are non-distributable and highly perishable (our black pansies need to be eaten within a couple of hours of harvesting for instance).
The AgBag provides a durable inexpensive growing structure to facilitate participatory research and to experiment with vegetation based systems design. The platform features a nondestructive, safe but temporary counterbalanced attachment to railings and windows. It can be easily installed on existing structures by an individual with no particular tools or skills, and easily integrated into diverse building situations that allow counter balancing.
The production and distribution of AgBags is a participatory public experiment by the Environmental Health Clinic Farmacy to support pollinators (in pollinator crisis), improve air quality (and the cardio-vascular health of each of us), and explore delicious highly nutritious flower foods. This inexpensive, low maintenance, soil-building closed-system that can easily integrate onto railing, windowsills, facades or parapets of existing urban structures.
We are launching an air-quality experiment to enflower the of parking structures at JFK airport, the collective front door to NYC. A significant deployment could double to Leaf Area Index to address the compromised air that welcomes people who work at and use this public facility. To collectively realize this the Environmental Health Clinic (xClinic) is offering railings of flowers that can be individually annotated and illustrated as a (welcome) gift. These can be sponsored for $100-$600 depending on railing size and position. While personalizable, these flowers will visibly signal the collective civic will to improve our shared human and environmental health.