Drive through almost most any neighborhood in Columbus and you’ll probably see some sort of community garden. Urban agriculture has seen huge growth in the last few years, as residents of cities began to gain interest in where their food comes from and how it is produced.

Last year, Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) introduced the Urban Agriculture Act of 2016 into the U.S. Congress, aimed at helping those in urban farming with investments in new resources and programs. “Urban agriculture is steadily growing in cities and towns across Michigan and across our country, creating new economic opportunities and safer, healthier environments,” said Senator Stabenow. “The Urban Agriculture Act will continue this momentum by helping urban farmers get started or expand their business, so they can sell more products and supply more healthy food for their neighbors.” Although the bill was referred to committee in September 2016, the spirit of urban farming has continued to spread throughout the country.

Fortunately, We Dig Ohio is bringing that same energy here to Columbus. For the third year, Franklin Park Conservatory will host the Urban Agricultural & Community Garden Summit. The event, which will take place on Saturday, will cover important urban farming topics such as four seasons gardening, aquaponics, plant pathology and much more.

Clara Coleman, Keynote speaker at “We Dig Ohio” 2017

This year’s keynote speaker, Clara Coleman is a second generation organic farmer, who will speak about both developing legacy farms that last for generations, as well as four-season farming, which she gained experience in at her home in Maine.

The event will begin at 8 a.m. in The Wells Barn at Franklin Park Conservatory. Tickets are $60 or $45 for students with a valid Student ID. We Dig Ohio will conclude at 4:30 p.m. and a lunch made from locally sourced food is included. The deadline for registration is Tuesday, March 21 at 6 p.m.