Last year, Jeri Villarreal did the unthinkable: She turned a vacant lot on Delmar Boulevard into a thriving, chemical-free garden and farm. Villarreal and her family raise all-natural chickens and grow heirloom and exotic produce at Our City Farm. The lot often surprises passersby; it seems out of place, but delightfully so.
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When Gut Check visited Our City Farm (4539 Delmar Boulevard, 314-282-5290), we weren't even sure we'd found it at first, surrounded by concrete. But the thriving farm is less than an acre of oasis in the middle of St. Louis. Villarreal farms with her husband, Carlos, but that day two teenage boys were volunteering (we were surprised, too) and playing with her young son, Braulio. Our City Farm provides its produce, eggs and poultry through an extended CSA that runs six months out of the year. The Villarreals are planning to expand into an adjacent vacant lot, where they'll plant seedlings and build a small chicken coop. The most refreshing thing about it, though, was the feeling that Our City Farm is becoming a unifying force in the community. Volunteer, sign up for the CSA and learn more at their website here.
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