Carpenter inspired me to start my own urban homestead in San Francisco, California, where I live.
Today Novella is getting significant press coverage because she got caught selling chard from her backyard garden. Here are links to a selection of the stories, which have generated hundreds of user comments hours after publication:
- Oakland gardener questions need for permit to sell produce
- Popular produce stand in West Oakland shuttered until farmer sorts out permit issue with city of Oakland
- City of Oakland fines urban homesteading author Novella Carpenter
- Yep, Novella Carpenter still needs a permit if she wants to sell produce from her garden
- Iconic urban farmer Novella Carpenter
- Oakland cracks down on Novella
Oakland, California is demanding Carpenter acquire a permit to sell products from her homestead. Apparently such permits cost a few thousand dollars.
Since Carpenter is famous and has zillions of supporters, I suspect she’ll come through this experience just fine. A permit costs money, but she can raise the money from her fans and then be compliant with the rules. The result will be more visitors to her vegetable stand because she’s getting a ton of great press right now.
I learned from the press coverage she’s now receiving that she paid just $30,000 for the vacant lot behind her apartment that she had been squatting on until recently. She received this favorable price because the owner wanted her to own the land. Doing this probably made the past owner feel good, and gave her some bragging rights that she enabled Carpenter to really get serious about her urban homestead.
I admire it when people get famous by doing something interesting and passionately writing about it.
In case you missed my post from January 25, 2011, here’s a clip of Carpenter speaking at the Commonwealth Club of California:
Carpenter teaches homesteading classes, including on how to raise dairy goats. I plan to take that one as soon as it’s offered again.