Meet the Farm Crew


A Michigan native who has lived in a few different countries around the world, Allison recently moved back to the Eastside of Lansing where she first got into organic farming after graduating from MSU about 10 years ago.  With a background in community development, Allison hopes to use what she learns as an apprentice to build community and promote a healthy and ecologically/socially-conscious lifestyle.  She loves to cook (and eat!) and has found a new appreciation for turnips because the Hakurei variety grown at Urbandale Farm is so delicious!  She sees herself possibly starting a small, organic farming business from home in the future while staying involved in her local community.  When not on the farm, Allison can be found doing yoga, dancing, or practicing her Spanish at the taco truck.

Mother, grandmoma, sister, auntie, and niece, Diane, likes to grow beautiful veggies and flowers to cook and enjoy them later with pride.  She is looking forward to harvest-time.  She’s learned a considerable amount about ground-prepping, proper spacing of plants, pest control, and working to create a good bounty.  She was introduced to gardening at a young age.  Her mom was from Arkansas, but didn’t appreciate growing crops until older.  She is worried about pesticides.  To start something as a seed and later bring the fruit or veggie to the table is wonderful.  Her favorites include watermelon, cucumbers, squash, or a plump red tomato.  She’d like to later have a little farm stand, talk to neighbors and passerby’s, teach the children, and really retire.  Perhaps a teaching farm as she’s had the opportunity to be a part of.  It’s always nice to share knowledge and maybe learn a new technique.

Emily is studying Environmental Science at Loyola University in Chicago with minors in Journalism and Dance.  As an intern at Urbandale Farm, she is excited to learn about how to farm sustainably and organically.  She wants to use the knowledge she gains at Urbandale Farm in Loyola’s green house next year.  This is Emily’s first experience farming and she loves it, especially the farmer’s food!

Coming from the other side of the Atlantic, Gaelle was looking for a new experience after having worked in a Landscape design company for several years. Willing to get her hands dirty in a concrete project and to know more about the ‘edible landscape’ of Michigan, she is happy to be involved as a intern at Urbandale farm. Besides learning a lot about farming techniques, insects, and plants, she discovers a real sense of community but also new vegetables such as okras, kholrabi, tomatillos…Back home, she hopes using those skills in the future to create a community garden and convince people how growing their own food can be as important as rewarding.  Her favorite vegetable? Since avocados doesn’t like Michigan that much, raw turnips are the perfect snack while rucola is the best in an italian salad!

Bio coming soon!

Kiel is looking forward to becoming a part of the local food movement in his community.  He feels good about helping to provide fresh produce because it gives him a sense of freedom and ownership in the essential human activity of eating.  He hopes to use this experience to join Americorps in order to experience the West Coast.  When not gardening, he enjoys making art, biking, camping, and playing basketball.

Bio coming soon!

Ryan is from Mason and hopes to own his own farm in the future.  He is passionate about communicating how the food system affects our social, ecological, and economic systems and thus is paramount to a robust society.  He took horticulture classes at MSU and spent most of 2013 on a diverse farm in Northern Michigan.  Small scale intensive growing and engaging communities with farms are areas of particular interest.  So far he’s been learning a great deal about the insects, wild plants, and wildlife that inhabit our urban landscape.  In his free time, Ryan enjoys playing percussion, utilizing edible weeds, and tending his own garden at home.  In his opinion, winter carrots are the superlative garden vegetable!

Sarah is the farm manager at Urbandale Farm and is looking forward to her fifth growing season on the farm.  She always looks forward to working outside through the change in seasons and especially loves the diversity in farm tasks that are part of her job.  She especially enjoys working with all the neighbors, volunteers, intern, and apprentices who keep Urbandale Farm running.  Sarah’s hobbies include watching her toddler explore the farm, backpacking, birdwatching, playing music, running, and cooking.

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