urban homestead / eco bed & breakfast

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Who We Are

We are Karin & Greg, and Maya, a small family trying to live sustainably on 1/3 acre near the downtown core of Kitchener, a mid-sized Canadian city. In the past, we have lived and worked on a variety of organic & biodynamic farms across Canada, and through these experiences developed the desire to grow our own food and live a life that is light on the earth. We also enjoy the vibrant community & car-free options the city life offers, and yet dream of a slower, self-reliant rurally based existence. For now, our homestead at Little City Farm is just the place where we can begin to unclutter our busy city lives, find more time to do what we enjoy, and live a more simple, healthful, restorative and earth-centred existence.

Welcome to Little City Farm

At Little City Farm we are practicing ways to reduce consumption and incorporate natural cycles into every day living, and rather than setting up a rural homestead we are exploring what this lifestyle can look like in the city. By choosing to run our little farm here and use it to provide educational opportunities for the public, we hope to help support endeavors that promote community, and increase the livability of our city.

In the spirit of "modern pioneering", we aim to provide many of our basic needs (food, water, shelter, energy, transportation) while reducing our impact on the environment. In 2007 we opened our cozy 120-year old home as an eco-friendly bed & breakfast and urban homestead, in the hopes of sharing our life and inspiring others to take their own steps toward greater sustainability.

What we do here:

1) Producerism:
We grow much of our own food; dry and preserve foods for the winter; practice traditional homesteading skills like soapmaking and bread baking; we harvest rainwater and recycle our household greywater; we make herbal remedies using botanicals grown in our gardens. We try to minimize purchases, either making our own or reusing/recycling/reinventing/restoring. What we can't produce ourselves we try to buy from local artisans and farmers to help support our local economy. We operate a variety of small home-based businesses that produce quality handmade goods, and host an annual Seedling Sale in May, providing heirloom and organic seedlings for city gardeners!

2) Permaculture:
We are not permaculture experts, but we do try to use the 12 key principles of permaculture as a guide in all aspects of our life. This includes observing nature; creatively using and responding to change; using small & slow solutions; valuing diversity; using & valuing renewable resources; producing no waste; catching & storing energy.

3) Education:
We host more than 20 workshops each year, as part of our ongoing Sustainability Workshop Series, offering affordable hands-on classes on the topics of homesteading, permaculture, sustainable city living, and more! We also maintain a Blog as another way of sharing information about city farming, sustainability, and our homesteading life.

4) Simple Living:
Although we are not "off-grid", we are striving toward reducing our energy consumption and using sustainable or human-powered options where possible. We use a passive solar greenhouse to grow seedlings; ride bicycles or use a shared co-op vehicle for errands; and power our home with 100% green renewable energy from Bullfrog Power.

5) Sharing:
We hope that by sharing our home through public events, workshops and the bed & breakfast, we will offer inspiration to others along their own journey toward greater sustainability.

A Little More About Us

Greg's background is carpentry and construction, a trade he went into with the intent of someday building his own sustainable home. This dream has been partially realized with the straw bale addition Greg built here at Little City Farm. Greg currently works with a non-profit organization supporting a local barter system and small business development. Greg also has a passion for water - rivers, rain barrels, ponds - and has been developing the greywater pond system and rainwater reclamation at Little City Farm.

Karin's passions include growing & preparing food, herbal healing, bread baking, crafting, and teaching. She worked for many years in community development, with a focus on urban agriculture, community gardens and food security. Having been a vegetarian for more than 20 years, she loves developing healthy whole-food based recipes, as well as growing and preserving the garden harvest. Karin mindfully prepares simple, elegant meals and baked treats for our guests using local seasonal fare. Karin is a Master Herbalist and has been studying herbal medicine since 1997 - she operates Homestead Herbals, a small home-based business making natural soaps and herbal products, specializing in mama & baby items.

Maya, our little honeybee, helps out with all aspects of the homestead! She supervizes the harvest, feeds the chickens and collects their eggs, helps mama in the kitchen, accompanies us on long walks, and generally keeps us entertained with her new discoveries and joy for life.

Little City Farm is 100% Green Energy Powered!

Little City Farm is Bullfrog Powered

508 Duke Street West, Kitchener, ON, N2H 3Y8
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Phone: (519) 575-9174
Email: info@littlecityfarm.ca
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