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Farmscape

California
Photo: Farmscape

Regions Served

  • Los Angeles & S. CA
  • San Francisco & Bay Area

Founded in 2008 by Dan Allen and Lara Hermanson, Farmscape is the largest urban farming company in California, dedicated to creating lush, organic gardens that reconnect people to fresh food right from their own backyard.

Lara and Dan first met running competing urban farming ventures and connected over a shared passion for getting their hands dirty — doing the work they love on a daily basis while also looking ahead to create lasting, green jobs. Lara’s design sense and background in landscaping, combined with Dan’s background as a Master Gardener, resulted in gorgeous and abundant outdoor spaces. The Farmscape — a trademarked term — was born.

To address the reality of climate change and California’s severe drought conditions, Farmscapes are designed to be sustainable and water-wise. Gardens feature crops like tomatoes, salad greens, herbs and fruit trees, complemented by native and drought-tolerant plants.

The company has designed, installed and maintained hundreds of gardens since its founding. As trusted local farmers, the team grows food for single-family homes, master-planned communities, Fortune 500 companies, Michelin-starred chefs and World Series Champions.

Details

Contact

Owners

  • Dan Allen & Lara Hermanson

Locations

  • Northern California
    1620 S 7th St
    San Jose, CA 95112
  • Southern California
    3001 N Coolidge Ave
    Los Angeles, CA 90039

Featured Projects

Sherman Oaks

A major consideration when planning our garden layouts is critter pressure.  While they can be a nuisance in ornamental landscapes, critters can be an even bigger challenge in the vegetable garden if they’re eating all of your perfect tomatoes. In some cases, permanent enclosures are required for a successful crop.  However, large structures in the landscape can hold a lot of weight in an otherwise soft, green garden.  Here, we balanced a small but efficient walk-in enclosure with a few open-air raised beds for less vulnerable crops like squash and sunflowers (summer), and root crops and alliums (winter).

For the planting and trees, there were 12 existing fruit trees on-site with varying levels of health and fruiting success.  We reconfigured the irrigation to properly hydrozone the trees and opened up adjacent garden space for them to be maintained.  Flowering perennial herbs fill in surrounding pathways.

Photo: Caitlin Atkinson

Atherton

Play with (or at least next to) your food!  No problem.

We could not wait to get our hands on this large lawn (3,100 SF) to start carving out generous areas for planting and exploring.  We increased the size of the borders between the property line and existing lawn to create ample space for various play structures between the vegetable garden’s raised beds and kiwi trellises.

All green-waste (tree clippings and sod) was integrated into a “hugel” to reintegrate the biomass in the existing landscape and create landforms on an otherwise totally flat site. We planted them with berries and pollinator friendly perennials to shape secret gardens that can be traversed over and through.

Photo: Caitlin Atkinson

Culver City Landscape

Realizing the front yard was too shady for food production, we worked with our clients to locate the sunniest spot on their property for cultivation, which ended up being the backyard.  To celebrate this family’s love of local produce and commitment to gardening, new redwood raised beds bordered with simple mulch paths, flowering herbaceous perennials and fruit trees that were sited front and center in the yard.  Existing fig and avocado trees provide shade for a circular decomposed granite patio.

Often, our favorite elements are unexpected.  The family shared with us their son’s love of edible flowers and interest in foraging while hiking in the nearby hills. In the front yard, we incorporated a “foraging meadow”, a wild patch with native miner’s lettuce, nasturtiums, cornflowers, frilly chrysanthemums along with mixes of California native annual flowers from the Theodore Payne Foundation.

Photo: Caitlin Atkinson

The Jonathan Club

Farmscape has collaborated with The Jonathan Club on this downtown LA rooftop farm for nearly a decade. The planters provide fresh produce, harvested daily, for the on-site restaurant and special events.

Our management of the farm includes:

-56 stock tank planters
-Two dozen citrus trees, passionfruit vine and blueberries
-A greenhouse that allows us to grow food even in the shadiest corners of the roof.

The project began as 6 stock tanks on the northern edge of the roof and expanded to the current scope in 2013 based on positive feedback from the Chef and membership.

The Jonathan Club rooftop farm has been profiled by the LA Times, and is the site of periodic tours for interested developers, building professionals, and government agencies.

Photo: Farmscape

STEM Kitchen & Garden

STEM Kitchen & Garden serves Warriors fans with sweeping views of the Bay prior to the games next door at Chase Center. Fans can enjoy farm salads featuring radicchio, butter lettuce and fresh herbs while watching hummingbirds pollinate the crops. Our farm team recommends trying the fruity “shrubs”: non-alcoholic, vinegar-based cocktails that feature the guava, meyer lemon and blueberries grown on-site. Challenges include managing the low soil depth (9”) of the podium and the infamously cold and windy San Francisco summers.

Photos: Farmscape

Rancho Mission Viejo

Rancho Mission Viejo (RMV) is a master-planned community in South Orange County. The community spans 23,000 acres with ¾ preserved indefinitely as open space and agriculture.Farmscape manages three farm sites at RMV, with farm elements including:

-Row crops
-Raised beds
-100+ Fruit trees
-On-site composting at two sites
-Greenhouse
-Central barn for processing and storage

Farmscape also provides extensive programming for the community, such as:

-A cooperative farm management program for registered families
-Monthly farm stands
-Gleaning for food banks
-Seasonal workshops and celebrations
-Monthly potlucks
-Internship program with Saddleback Community College

Patterson Ranch

Patterson Ranch is the first and only working Agrihood in the Bay Area. The 2-acre growing ground consists of:

-A 100-tree orchard, featuring apples, pears, peaches and plums
-Row crops
-Raised beds adjacent to the barn for easy harvesting and access

The row crops and raised beds use regenerative and organic farming methods in order to produce fresh produce for the 500 homes in the community. Residents are encouraged to volunteer, take classes and workshops, and sign up to enjoy the bountiful harvests grown by the local farm team.

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