what people are saying

The Medical University of South Carolina engaged Ms. Elizabeth Beak of Crop Up to develop our new Urban Farm project. It would be an understatement to say that the proposed garden itself and the programs we are developing around it would be a dream without Ms. Beak's careful and inspired leadership. She has developed goals and built consensus from a wide variety of user groups and done it with grace and enthusiasm. I can't think of anyone who would be more knowledgeable and suitable to implement similar programs.


Wade Lewis Gatlin

Architect/Project Manager

Medical University of South Carolina

Crop-Up has been a huge asset during the master planning and charrette process for the Greenwood Farmers Market. She had the background and knowledge that enabled the team to build new relationships between the farmers, the restaurants, and the community.


Chris Watson, ASLA

SeamonWhiteside + Associates

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Johns Island's Farmer's Market

Have you heard about Johns Island's rad farmers market? It's quite the experience! We got the chance to chat with Frasier Block of Homegrown, the organizer of the market. Frasier has a wide background in agriculture and sustainability, including farm work at Ambrose and a farmer apprenticeship with Lowcountry Local First, which means she can really get people together around food!

The market itself is thoughtfully arranged in a circle to draw visitors towards the middle. There has been live music and fires there on these colder Saturdays but stay tuned to Homegrown's Facebook because Frasier has bigger plans for demonstrations and educational outreach with the community, perfect for the warm weekends to come. This is a part of the encompassing theme of the market; it serves to locally source the goods and services the community needs to make sustainable lifestyle choices: produce and edible goods, local crafts, and eduction.

Check it out on Saturdays! It will be open year-round, bringing a much needed winter produce market to the Charleston area. The availability is amazing with over 50 vendors supplying cheese, veggies, meats, eggs, breads, spices, fermented vegetables, and of course, local craft.

Located at 3546 Maybank Hwy, the market is open Saturdays from 10-2. Check out Homegrown's Facebook and website for more info.


Charleston Urban Growers Coalition

We are excited to be a part of an upcoming collaboration amongst urban growers in Charleston. The Charleston Urban Growers Coalition will provide opportunities to share knowledge and time dedicated to growing food in our city! Keep an eye out for Saturday events located around downtown involving intriguing topics (planting by the moon, growing fruit trees, and herbal health, to name a few).

GrowFood Carolina
MUSC Urban Farm
Charleston Permaculture Guild
Charleston Park Conservancy

Our mission statement: We are a coalition of urban gardeners and farmers. We share resources for cultivating healthy food and the culture of urban agriculture in Charleston.

Look out for upcoming CHUG events and check us out on Facebook! https://www.facebook.com/CharlestonUrbanGrowersCoalition?ref=ts&fref=ts


Winter Harvest Party

We had a blast at the Winter Harvest Party at GrowFood Carolina on Wednesday. The class from Meeting Street Academy learned to boil the peanuts they worked hard to nurture all fall. They also learned how to save seeds from some of our favorite Southern summer veggies.

We are so grateful for all the help we receive from the community. Thank you to the Lee brothers for lending us their gas stove, we had fun trying to light it without burning our hair off. Also thank you to Ms. Gray and Ms. Grant from Meeting Street Academy for bringing the kids over every month and for all of your help.

It was a great season at the GrowFood demonstration garden. Already brainstorming ideas for the spring when we can get our hands back in the dirt and start cropping up again!


Preserving the Americas' heritage: Rancho Gordo Beans

Steve Sando, leader of Rancho Gordo and experimental chef, started the company out of his frustration at the limited availability of native ingredients in the New World’s grocery stores. He began to grow tomatoes first and now grows his own beans. We are growing these ourselves at Mixson and looking forward to the chefs at Basico working their magic. The below picture is Brian choosing his favorites to grow in the Mixson beds.

Steve Sando’s enthusiasm for embracing the Americas and fostering a food culture that incorporates this history is exciting. Variety is, after all, the spice of life.

Rancho Gordo’s latest project involves buying beans directly from farmers in Mexico to grow in the United States. Next on their agenda- chia, corn, and salts. Our neighbors from the south have much to offer!


Scissors on the fence: How to Harvest Lettuce Leaf on the Verge

Lettuce Leaf is ready to harvest in the verge!

1. Cut Leaves about 1/4 inch above where the plant is coming out of the soil. This will allow it to grow back! 

2. Harvest leaves that are larger, or touching other plants. This will serve to prune the crop too! In the south, airflow can prevent disease. 

3. I like to harvest my lettuce in the morning, or evening. Sometimes this makes it less bitter. 

4. Dip in cool water to keep crisp! 

The flowers labeled "Borage" and "Nasturtium" in that bed are edible. Feel free to add the blue or orange flowers to your lettuce to make a colorful salad.