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Seattle Trip, part 1

October 15, 2011

Last month I was in Seattle visiting family and friends and had the honor to be asked by Janet Jones to join her group of inspirational gardeners in their celebration of the success of their garden. The Genesee Hill Garden in West Seattle is using part of a playground of a closed elementary school to grow food for people in need.  They removed a small bit of pavement and created nine plots, each 5’ x 17’ which are tended by neighbors, individually and shared. Their first year was very successful, not only did they provide food for themselves and others, they were a positive presence in what was formally a trouble spot. Previously the closed school had become a meeting place for local teens, and others, to get up to no good since there was plenty of sheltered areas and no one around. What a change a garden can make (see photos below).

They met for their celebration at the local brewpub, Elliot Bay Brewery, a photo album of the gardeners and their progress was passed around, there were prizes for the gardeners, and many discussions about gardening techniques, urban farming, and how it changes neighborhoods and enriches the lives of everyone involved.  I was extremely honored to meet them and join them in their celebration. We watched the current trailer for From the Ground Up, a great experience for me. Watching it with people made me realize where there was confusion and slow spots.  The trailer is currently being revised thanks to their input.  It is great that the documentary is already a tool for me to meet other gardeners and participate in discussions about urban farming.  I can’t wait for it to be finished and can be used by others.

Thank you again to the Genesee Hill gardeners for your warm welcome and excellent conversation, I look forward to seeing you the next time I am in Seattle.

The next blog post will be about parking strip gardens in Seattle, so come back soon.

Kristi Adams

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