Hollygrow brings together community through the spirit of growing & sharing.
We are Kweku, Amber, Nicola, Olivia, Michael, Mac, Victor, Mary, Bernadette, Armena, Kumar: farmers & gardeners who for years have been tending the land surrounding the former Hollygrove Market & Farm (HMF) building at 8301 Olive St. After HMF dissolved as a business on February 26, we became the holdouts, the remaining stakeholders of this land, some of us having been here continuously since HMF's founding in 2008. It is spring and our seeds have sprouted. Unfortunately we are in threat of losing the land where we grow--it was under lease by HMF for $4,200/month--so we aim to take control of the property lease and to find a solution to sustaining the vision that has flourished here for the past decade. But it won't be easy.
Since 2008, this site in the Hollygrove neighborhood has not only been a one-of-a-kind hub for fresh food from local farms, but fertile soil for successful leaders in local food systems. Among the organizations to have their roots at HMF were Grow Dat Youth Farm, Recirculating Farms Coalition, Sprout NOLA, Herbnflower.love, Solar Earth, Verti Farms, and Schmelly’s Dirt Farm. This farm site has been and continues to be a community gathering place for all those in the ever-growing local food economy. Hollygrow envisions itself maintaining the course of nurturing new growers and urban agricultural programs, providing affordable local foods access, and bringing together people through the essential work of growing & sharing.
We need your help.
It is our hope that, despite the challenges all of us face in an increasingly globalized world, our farm can find a way to sustain itself through financial investment, non-profit partnerships, and income-generating revenue streams like a new local foods market, office spaces for food & sustainability sector businesses, Sunday brunches in the garden, workshops, event fundraisers, and more.
Can we do it?
Yes: We have a potential market tenant who wants to open a new local food market to sell affordable products from farmers & producers, continuing the mission of bringing fresh food to the Hollygrove neighborhood and New Orleans.
Yes: We have food systems businesses and non-profits who are asking us about office space. We are envisioning private offices & coworking space above the market where these organizations can be in direct collaboration, hosting meetings and holding workshops while surrounded by a farm site that has been flourishing for a decade.
Yes: We are writing the business plan for a sustainable growers supply & plant nursery right on our farm where local urban growers can get garden soil & compost made on site, seedlings grow on site, a full array of organic soil amendments, growing supplies, and tools needed for sustainable agriculture.
Yes: We will bring back Sunday brunches with local chefs, bakers, farmers, and producers side by side with live music in a gorgeous setting.
Yes: We are drafting the blueprint for a non-profit administration organization to run the farm site and build the capacity to offer paid farmer mentor positions, scholarships for marginalized farm interns, and low-cost or free fresh food programs to bring local produce to vulnerable populations who might not otherwise have access.
We are trying to raise $1,000 to pay our utility bills, insurance, and pay for some operating cost of hosting events to bring the public back to our farm. Thank you to all the thousands of supporters who have been with us for years. And thank you to all the newcomers. Here we grow... please join us.