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Urban Agriculture Development Standards

Development Standards

The Urban Agriculture Ordinance adds a new section, (Article VIII, including 17.228.810 and 17.228.820) to Sacramento City Code to provide development and operational standards for urban agriculture.

Structures to support urban agriculture, such as storage sheds, hoop-houses, and greenhouses, are permitted, subject to the regulations of the underlying zone. Aquaculture operations must be screened from street view. Fencing is not required for private community gardens and market gardens.

Garbage and compost receptacles at market gardens and community gardens must be screened from the street and adjacent properties by utilizing landscaping, fencing or storage within structures.  Compost piles and containers must be set back at least 20 feet from residential buildings when an urban agriculture use abuts a residential land use. 
For questions about zoning, development and operational standards for urban agriculture uses, contact or call 311.

Operations and Maintenance

Except for initial preparation of the land, heavy mechanized farm equipment is prohibited in residential districts. Landscaping equipment designed for household use is permitted. When not in use, equipment must be enclosed or otherwise screened from sight.

Urban agriculture uses must be maintained in an orderly manner, including litter removal, irrigation, weeding, pruning, pest control and removal of dead or diseased plant materials. All garbage must be removed from the site weekly.  

Vacant lots that have been turned into market gardens and private community gardens are considered commercial enterprises and are not eligible for city collection services. Commercial enterprises such as market gardens and private community gardens are not allowed to place any yard waste in the street at any time. If they contract with private hauler to manage waste, it must be a franchised hauler approved by the Sacramento Waste Authority

Property owners of parcels are ultimately responsible for any violation of code related to waste removal. Questions on waste removal and urban farming can be sent to

Urban agriculture activities must include best practices to prevent pollutants from entering the stormwater conveyance system and must comply with all applicable federal, state, and local laws, ordinances, or regulations, including, but not limited to, the stormwater management and discharge control code in chapter 13.16 and the grading, erosion and sediment control ordinance in chapter 15.88.  For questions about urban agriculture and water quality, contact or (916) 808-4H20