Marquita HallHueytown, AL

Marquita Hall

Hueytown, AL

Jefferson County Conservation District

Marquita Hall operates a 2,000+ square foot seasonal high tunnel in an urban setting where she grows fruits, vegetables, and even green tea. The land that she grows on was robbed of nutrients years ago and she has since decided to add compost on top with minimal tillage. She rotates crops by season and has added wooden planks to house the new rich soil.

One of the positive results she’s noticed from increasing and improving the organic matter in the soil is that the soil tends to hold more water.

A challenge she has faced, however, is that the area she farms is mostly clay. Even when installing the high tunnel, digging deep enough was a challenge because of the hardened areas which were almost like rock. But by adding the organic matter, the tilth of the heavy clay soil has vastly improved.

To date, Hall has been able to cultivate both traditional and non-traditional crops in an Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) sponsored high tunnel, including tomatoes, cabbages, peppers, and green tea. A portion of the produce is donated to local homeless shelters.

In addition to being an urban farmer in her community, Hall is the founder of LocalEco Corporation, an agriculture and technology startup that offers innovative solutions to corporate, government, and community clients. Her goal is to bring vital research to urban agriculture by finding innovative ways to implement simple automation technologies in food desert environments.

Currently, Hall is a board member of the Jefferson County Conservation District, and a previous U.S. Department of Agriculture-NRCS program participant. Marquita Hall is also a service-disabled veteran, having served in the U.S. Army as an Ammunition Specialist during Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Posted April 2023

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