About Steven Biggs
farm writer, food writer, garden writer, Professional speaker
As an urbanite with an agricultural science degree and work experience in the agricultural sector, I make sense of farm, garden, and food issues for the urban public—and write about urban food thinkers, trends, and happenings for the farm sector.
FARM, GARDEN, FOOD Experience
I have worked in horticulture and agriculture for more than 25 years. Along with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from the University of Guelph, I have worked in greenhouse and nursery production, plant propagation, biological controls, horticultural supplies, and farm marketing.
My Communications Work
Author. I write gardening books that are fun and practical.
Freelance Journalism. I write about the food chain: farms, farm business, food, food processing, and gardening.
Professional Speaker. I speak about a range of gardening topics.
Radio Host. I tell the stories of gardeners who push boundaries.
Instructor. I inspire people who are studying horticulture.
Where to Find Me
In Person. Toronto, Ontario, Canada
On the Web. StevenBiggs.ca.
Other Parts of my Life
Children. Raising three young children. This is why I only blog occasionally.
Garden. It's a passion. I love climbing onto my garage roof before the sun rises to check the rooftop garden. And I have a lot of fun with my fig collection (see my fig website.)
Food. Admission—I actually enjoy grocery shopping. Food really interests me. So I've been known to do unconventional things like make parsnip wine or come home with a few laying hens.
The Outdoors. I love foraging for mushrooms with my kids, camping, or just going for a picnic.
Community. Toronto is an amazing city for food. Southern Ontario has diverse agricultural and horticultural operations, giving me lots of neat things for to write about. I live in a part of Toronto called Willowdale, where I've found that one of the best way to meet my neighbours is to garden in my front yard.
Becoming a Writer
I never thought I’d be a writer or speaker. I’m a horticulturist.
But every so often I get impulsive (and that can drive my wife, Shelley, crazy). Luckily for me, one of those impulsive moments brought me to where I am today.
I can still picture the look of surprise on Shelley’s face the day I came home and casually mentioned that I’d quit my job as a recruiter. I sucked at that recruiting job. I left a job…. Click here for the rest of the story of how I became a writer.
In 2017 I was honoured to be featured in the Garden Making magazine garden-makers issue as one of 20 people helping to make the Canadian landscape green for this generation and the next.
More About My writing
I write practical and fun gardening books. I am the author of Gardening with Emma, Grow Lemons Where You Think You Can’t, Grow-Gardeners. Kid-Tested Gardening with Children, Grow Figs Where You Think You Can't, No Guff Vegetable Gardening, and No Nonsense Vegetable Gardening.
Grow Figs Where You Think You Can't won a Silver Award of Achievement from the Garden Writers Association.
I write about farming, farm business, gardening, food, and the food system.
Monthly Press Reporting Award, Canadian Farm Writers' Federation, for Their Success is No Secret
Best Press Feature Award, Canadian Farm Writers' Federation, for On Camera
Outstanding Article Award, American Society of Journalists and Authors, for Farm Direct
My articles take readers into areas as diverse as crop marketing, farm business branding, food-processing companies, farming novelty crops, consumer food trends, food and demographics, agritourism, farm energy production, food distribution, direct-to-consumer sales, food policy, farm advisors, farm succession, retail food issues, prominent players in the agri-food system, home gardening, and gardening with kids.
I have written for a number of print and online magazines including Country Guide (Contributing Editor), Garden Making, Clublink Life, Spacing, Today's Parent, Open Skies, Edible Toronto, Small Farm Canada, Trellis, Canadian Property Management, Energy Procurement and Conservation, and The Harvest Commission.