I always love glancing at the front page of a newspaper and reading GOOD NEWS! I was particularly excited about a recent article in the Salt Lake Tribune about the Envision Utah poll results. The poll found 98% of Utahns that completed the survey would be willing to cut back on watering their lawns and avoid building on farmland to support Utah agriculture. The poll also showed that Utahns are hungry for more local food production and self-sufficiency. Being that USU Extension is in the business of educating residents on how to grow fruits and vegetables in Utah and how to irrigate efficiently, I’m sure you can see where my excitement is stemming from! Below are a few survey highlights and here is a link to the full article.

  • Just 3% of fruits and 2% of vegetables consumed by Utahns are grown in the state.Utahns want local produce

  • 65% of survey respondents stated they want to limit development of Utah agriculture land.

    Farming in Utah

    Greenville Farm

  • 65% of respondents chose the goal of 20% of fruits and vegetables consumed by Utahns should be grown in Utah.

    Local Food Issues Salt Lake

    Photo Credit: Dennis Hinkamp

I have no doubt that Utah gardeners could reach this goal if they commit to grow a garden at home or rent a space in a community garden. If you are interested in learning more about growing your own produce, check out the USU Extension Master Gardener Program in Salt Lake County. Just to address common misconceptions, you DO NOT have to be an experienced gardener to participate in the program (we love gumby gardeners) and WE DO offer an evening Master Gardener class in Salt Lake County.

Also, stay tuned from more information about the 4th annual Urban and Small Farms Conference in Salt Lake County (February 2016), and the 3rd annual Organic Growing Workshop at Wheeler Historic Farm (March 2016).