Backyard gardens become source of income

May 21, 2010 at 2:15 PM
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LOS ANGELES, May 21 (UPI) -- Los Angeles, which has a growing number of people selling home-grown fruit and vegetables, is halting enforcement of an ordinance against the practice.

The Los Angeles City Council said it is suspending enforcement of a 1946 ordinance and weighing a new measure, the Food and Flowers Freedom Act, which would allow for the growing of "berries, flowers, fruits, greens, herbs, ornamental plants, mushrooms, nuts, seedlings or vegetables for use on-site or sale or distribution off-site," the Los Angeles Times reported Friday.

The measure comes as an increasing number of local residents and people across the United States are turning to their home gardens as a source of supplementary income.

Cam Slocum, 50, said he grows beefsteak tomatoes and salad green baby mache in his back yard and sells them to restaurants. He said he has 10 regular clients and he wants to add 20 more to keep his garden profitable.

Ken Takayama, chef de cuisine at French restaurant Melissein Santa Monica, said locals are increasingly coming into the establishment aiming to sell their vegetables. He said the number has been steadily increasing since the economy first started tanking three years ago.

"Every day, every week, it's something new," Takayama said. "You name it, they have it."

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