Natural Home Interviews Truck Farm Filmmakers Curt Ellis and Ian Cheney

The pair's newest project, Truck Farm—a community-supported agriculture (CSA) program and forthcoming film—sprouted from one unlikely question: How do you grow your own food in the big city if you don’t have any land?


  • Ian Cheney (left) and Curt Ellis prove food can be grown just about anywhere—including the back of a pickup truck.
    Photo By Taylor Gentry

In their Peabody Award-winning documentary King Corn, Brooklyn-based filmmakers Curt Ellis and Ian Cheney traveled to Iowa and planted a bumper crop of corn on 1 square acre of land. The pair's newest project, Truck Farm—a community-supported agriculture (CSA) program and forthcoming film—sprouted from one unlikely question: How do you grow your own food in the big city if you don’t have any land?

What sparked the idea to plant a farm in the back of a pickup truck? 

Ian: We wanted to grow some of our own food. But where to do it in New York City? The back of my granddad’s old 1986 Dodge pickup truck was the only land we had.

How much did it cost?



Ian: About two hundred bucks. Paul Mankiewicz, this brilliant, quirky scientist, has developed this awesome lightweight soil called GaiaSoil (gaiasoil.com). It cost a hundred bucks to buy enough to cover about 20 cubic feet. We also bought about 50 dollars’ worth of compost and potting soil. Another 50 dollars bought the seeds.

Curt: And a friend of mine gave us a big thing full of worms.



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