On The Farm

From the Farmer: Protecting the land we borrow

Every farm has land access concerns

If you are in an urban area – unless you have independent wealth – you are likely to find yourself farming on someone else’s land.

In his book, The Urban Farmer, Curtis Stone celebrates the virtues of farming on borrowed land. We think this is the way to go for urban farmers. It’s important that we (and anyone pursuing urban farming on borrowed land) think about the value of doing what’s right on someone else’s land. For example, a blueberry bush will take a few years to produce. By that time, the land may have changed hands multiple times. It would be really special if you cultivated strong and long-lasting relationships so that you can be there even if the land does change owners.

Urban Farmer
We’re diggin’ The Urban Farmer by Curtis Stone – it’s helped us understand land use, crunch numbers, and plan for the future.

In my opinion, good stewardship always makes sense. It is up to us to mitigate any damage and begin to restore the land whether we own it or not. In the end, even if you do not get to taste that blueberry, if you see a perfect spot for an orchard, you should plant it. You never know how things will turn out. Regarding daily access to the land, be ready for anything. In the coming years, I hope to have multiple small plots in operation and other plots in development. When and if we lose one, we will hopefully be prepared to start another. All the while, we will do our best to help restore those lands whenever possible.

– Jason Schmidt, Farm Manager

On The Farm

Healthy Farms Start With Healthy Soil!

Healthy Farms Start With Healthy Soil

When we started the project, we recruited local partners to help us get started. We knew we needed land access, but we could not be sure about the soil quality. In most urban areas, the soil quality will be challenging for several reasons:

  • Past uses may have compacted the soil.
  • Nearby pollutants may have contaminated the soil.
  • Previous agricultural uses may have depleted the soil’s organic matter.

Since all of these could be true for our property, we partnered with Greater Greenville Sanitation, which provides full-service, non-hazardous, waste and recovery solutions to nearly 60,000 residential and commercial customers in Greenville County. We spent time at Greater Greenville Sanitation learning how they recycle yard waste to create nutrient-rich soil. This soil will be donated to our farm in the spring – most of which is made up of 3-year-old leafy materials. They’re already using their yard waste-turned-soil to grow food onsite. This food is then donated to those in need around the Greenville area. Diverting waste from landfills and donating food to local charities – how much better does it get? 

Healthy Farms Starts with Healthy Soil!
Greater Greenville Sanitation’s Yard Waste Facility

Greater Greenville Sanitation know the lay of the land and the quantities of material they can provide. They also have the necessary equipment to haul materials around. Ultimately, by partnering with the people who collect yard waste, you may actually be helping them reduce their hauling costs by allowing them to deliver local waste directly to your site.

Likewise, it’s great to work with an organization that prefers to find alternative uses for our waste rather than hauling it to landfills!

Red Tape Welcome

Getting down to business: Making use of the resources in our own backyard!

The world was ours – well, at least the grant was. We were on the moon! After coming back down to Earth, however, reality was there to greet us. We had zero experience building a business from the ground up. What setbacks should we anticipate? What financial arrangements did we need to make? And scariest of all, what if our on-paper ideas simply didn’t translate to the real world?

Our growing concerns sent us scrambling for answers – and with the help of South Carolina’s Small Business Development Center, answers we found! The SBDC’s mission is to advance South Carolina’s economic development by helping entrepreneurs grow successful businesses, and with the help of Clemson University, they operate 21 centers across the state in both urban and rural areas.

Greenville’s SBDC doesn’t usually get urban farms knocking at their door, but that didn’t hinder Business Consultant Rance Bryan, who also consulted Greenville’s beloved Swamp Rabbit Cafe & Grocery in their early days. Rance helped us clarify our goals and decide what type of business we needed to register as (an LLC). But wait, we haven’t shared the best part – this service was completely FREE. If you’re an entrepreneur (although we prefer ecopreneur), you cannot afford to overlook this resource!

South Carolina Small Business Development Centers – advancing South Carolina’s economic development by helping entrepreneurs grow successful businesses.

Liability Insurance

Thanks to the SBDC, we knew what we needed to do next: Hire a Tax Accountant and purchase liability insurance. Karen Winters, an Enrolled Agent of Winters-Smith Associates, LLC, specialized in small businesses and didn’t waste any time getting down to business. She gave sound suggestions on record keeping, opening bank accounts, and introduced us to a number of helpful tools.

After countless hours of research and analyzing quotes, our partners over at Project Host (Gardening For Good) recommended we speak to Jennifer Hincapie, the Vice President of Furman Insurance. Unlike other insurance companies we reached out to, Jennifer invited us to her office to discuss our project goals. After taking the time to understand our unique needs, the quote she gave us was the cherry on top!

With business taken care of, we were able to get back to our veggies – this time with peace of mind. If you’re interested in starting your own business, take advantage of the resources we have here in the Upstate.

Community Welcome

How it All Began

It all started with an idea

With years of experience as a chemistry teacher and an engineer, our Farm Manager, Jason Schmidt, wanted to combine his background and love of farm-fresh food to serve the Greenville Community. His idea: starting a school farm. He pitched the concept to Legacy Charter School, where feeding students nutritious, high quality meals is a top priority. Together they realized a school farm would further LCS’s mission by inviting students to help grow their own food.


Lunch is served at Legacy Charter School

As they say, timing is everything. Within a week of Jason sharing his idea with the Greenville County Soil & Water Conservation District (GCSWCD), a new grant from the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) was announced. After weeks of crafting the perfect proposal, NACD’s Urban Agriculture Conservation Grant was awarded to GCSWCD in late July with an aim to promote soil and water conservation practices. From idea to reality, Legacy City Farm was born!

It’s our hope that LCF will increase community awareness around sustainable farming practices and start a much needed conversation about local food systems. The hands-on nature of school farms will teach students, staff, and the local community how to be environmental champions. LCF will also highlight the importance of public health and building strong, local economies.

City View Community

Since we’re in the beginning stages, we’re listening to what the community has to say. We’ve gone door-to-door, letting the community know about the farm. After hours of meeting new faces, we’re happy to say that Legacy’s neighbors are behind us! We’re also working to design the perfect farm layout, clear the land, and get the permits we need to start growing food. Our goal is to have students harvesting their own veggies in the fall.


It’s kudzu crazy at the farm site. Clearing the land will be no easy task!
A view of the land from 6th St.
Greenville is joining the urban farming movement that’s sweeping the nation. We can’t wait to teach students new skills and help our environment along the way!



Welcome to the Farm!

Woodside City Farm

Coming Soon!

Woodside City Farm (WCF) is located in Greenville, South Carolina at 90 N 6th Street in Greenville, SC.

WCF will be a working model urban farm that utilizes sustainable practices to:

  • educate the school, the neighboring community, area community gardens, and local small farmers about soil and water conservation and
  • provide the local community and Legacy Charter School with a consistent supply of fresh produce and agricultural products.

WCF will present numerous opportunities to implement and demonstrate the latest conservation techniques in urban agriculture to residents, other community gardens, and the local active small farm community that supplies area farmer’s markets.

In partnership with:

Legacy City Farm Partners