Growing one’s own food in urban areas can seem like a far-fetched idea. But not for one Pasadena family.
The Dervaes family has been growing their own food for more than a decade. They’ve been at the forefront of urban homesteading by growing thousands of pounds of food annually in an average-size backyard.
“I brought the country to the city rather than having to go out to the country,” said Jules Dervaes, the man behind the self-sufficient farm he created with his three adult children.
The Dervaes’ urban homestead is sustainable and dense. They grow and raise 400 varieties of vegetables, fruits, and edible flowers that amount to about 6,000 pounds of food a year, enough to feed the family with surplus left over to sell. Fresh eggs from chickens round out their diet.
The family-owned city farm is the talk of the town for many local chefs looking to cook up a tasty meal. The family makes roughly $20,000 just from selling their freshly grown produce. They use the money to buy staples that they can’t grow like wheat, rice, and oats.
Reporter Val Zavala visits the Dervaes’ homestead to find out what inspired Jules Dervaes to go green in the extreme.