Camouflaged behind modest single family homes and fencing, there sits a farm in the middle of Miami's Little Haiti neighborhood.
It's called Earth N Us Farm, a hidden lush two acres of winding philodendron vines, gumbo limbo trees, rescued pigs, chickens and emus, a vegetable garden and a towering tree house.
Ray Chasser, the farm's owner, didn't set out to build this eco-village at 7630 NE 1st Ave,.
He purchased a home in the neighborhood nearly 40 years ago for his family. Back then, he says, there were a lot of drug houses on the block. Each time a drug dealer got arrested another set up shop.
Chasser approached these property owners with a proposal: "Sell them to me."
And they did.
Today, the farm has a mixture of short term-tenants, like the folks who rent out the tree house on Airbnb, and long-term tenants who live in apartments and tents surrounding the property.
It is a community gathering space for vegan potlucks, drum circles and garden classes.
Chasser says he worries about the future of the farm as the neighborhood changes and developers come in. He wants to create a trust or nonprofit that will make sure Earth N Us Farm lives on beyond him.
"It’s too important to let this go to a highrise," he says. "Nature is probably the only thing that’s perfect.
Take a look at the Earth N Us Farm in photos below.
Take a video tour of the farm here: