Congestion and construction are the fiber of city life, but amid Miami-Dade County's concrete jungle a large herb farm grows. GROW, or Green Railway Organic Workshop, is a 2.5 acre farm with roots between industrial warehouses near Miami International Airport.
Started in 2007 on an abandoned railway track, GROW is now home to more than 9,000 herb plants. It cost more than $100,00 to get up and running. The grassroots organization hopes to reclaim up to 100 acres of vacant railway within the next several years.
GROW's mission, however, is more about people than the planet. The farm, which is in the process of applying to be a nonprofit organization, has a strong educational component. Students of all ages and skill learn about agriculture by preparing the land, planting, watering and harvesting the more than 15 varieties of herbs grown at the farm.
Those herbs are then packed and distributed to grocery stores and restaurants through Rock Garden Warehouse, a wholesale distributor next door to the garden and owned by GROW Founder Charlie Coiner.