special to the star

Clutching bunches of just-picked heritage beets at her Sorauren Park stall on a sunny afternoon, Matchbox Garden & Seed Co. founder Hanna Jacobs, a trained chef, explains the prime motive behind her start as an urban farmer. In 2006, as a new mother, Jacobs set up a retail herb garden in the heart of hip Queen St. W. Customers were invited to stroll through the small backyard patch and order a bunch of chives, mint, basil – whatever took their fancy. Then Jacobs, the daughter of a horse farmer in Maple, Ont., would pull out the snips. Talk about fresh.

Today she has two business partners, one acre of cultivated land in Brampton, five urban plots and “more beets than I know what to do with.”

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