Gallery: The Roof, the Roof, the Roof is a Farm!

green roof, greenpoint brooklyn, goode green, rooftop farm, brooklyn, greenpoint, manhattan, new york city, urban farming

Like the rest of the Inhabitat crew, I get to spend a good part of my day ogling the finest futuristic farming fantasies that the interwebs have to offer. From towering vertical agriscrapes to vegetation-packed geodesic domes, my eyes are bombarded with images of the perfect urban farm daily, but when it comes to actually growing anything myself, I must admit rather sheepishly that I don’t know my sugar snap peas from my snopeas. Well, all of that is about to change because Rooftop Farms, a real-life 6,000 square foot organic vegetable farm with a view of the Manhattan skyline is now open to anyone who wants to lend a hand. Luckily for me, that hand need not be blessed with a green thumb…yet.

While Rooftop Farms is large, it’s nothing fancy, which I actually think is a wonderful thing. As awe-inspiring as some of the vertical farms and green roofs we’ve featured in the past are, many reader comments indicate that people are looking for something simpler to start with than a 132 floor dragonfly-shaped skyscraper farm. And Rooftop Farms is just the thing. Located in the industrial Greenpoint section of Brooklyn, the farm is basically a warehouse rooftop covered in 200,000 lbs of soil. That means that no energy had to be expended and no money had to be spent to construct a separate building to hold the rows of juicy tomatoes or the crisp peas and lettuces. Isn’t that the beauty of a rooftop garden – using what we already have?

So who is behind this veggie-filled eden? You can thank Chris and Lisa Goode of Goode Green Roofs along with partner Amy Trachtman. Annie Novak of the New York Botanical Garden and Ben Flanner, a former E*Trade marketer are the green thumbs that get the garden to grow.

And guess what? When you’re done volunteering, there is a green market every Sunday where you can pick up some of the fruits and veggies of your labor. If you’re too pooped to cook them up yourself? Just stroll on down to nearby restaurants Marlow & Sons, Anella and Vesta Trattoria which slice, dice, saute and roast fresh pickings from the farm daily.

+ Rooftop Farms



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  1. pecanino July 17, 2009 at 12:20 am

    Thanks Yuka!

  2. Will July 15, 2009 at 3:01 pm

    It is good to see projects like this. Sky farms are growing as a concept, and practice. I read a great article called “Skyfarms and Green Roofs” at that talks more about it detail.

    While I love green roofs, I think sky farms are pretty cool. Some of the vertical farming technology can be found at the Epcot Center at Walt Disney World in Florida.

  3. Yuka Yoneda July 15, 2009 at 2:08 pm

    Hmmm – that’s a good point pecanino. I feel like they must have taken that into account, but I’ll ask someone from the project to comment.

  4. pecanino July 15, 2009 at 1:29 pm

    Talk about soil erosion….. Jeez, this thing is on top of a building where it’s going to get a lot of wind. It doesn’t look like they’ve installed any kind of wind-break and there are huge gaps between the rows of crops. Most vegetables can’t be treated as cover crops like grains can. I wonder how long it will be before they have to replace most of the soil up there…

    I’m glad it’s a simple style farm… less carbon emissions than all the construction necessary for all these overly ornate concepts that we’re thrown all the time. I hope I’m wrong about the soil erosion, but I’m really doubting it. If it’s sustainable in the long run, I hope more projects like this “sprout up.”

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