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Returning to our roots: Black Americans are redefining relationship to the land with gardening, farming

Black people across America are reconnecting to their roots – literally.

Though large numbers of Black people have historically been excluded from land ownership, an emerging group of Black Americans are turning to gardening, farming and agriculture as a means of empowerment, self sufficiency and tapping into their ancestral ties to the soil. 

My grandfather was one of those Black people with deep roots to the land. During a Father’s Day FaceTime call with my dad, I discovered my paternal grandfather was a master at agriculture, skills he learned from his grandfather. I listened as my dad recounted how his father would tend to the soil in their backyard in Bakersfield, Calif., making do with the small plot of land at their modest family home.

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