In our recent visit to San Francisco we had the chance to visit some community gardens around the city. Our intention was twofold: on one hand to see these spaces first hand, know about their history and how they work; on the other hand, to get as much feedback as possible about Greenius from the gardeners, learn their needs and wants.
Let me tell you, it was not easy to access the gardens. At first we just dropped by the gardens but found them close every time. Next, we left our business cards on the gates and emailed some garden coordinators. We had a great response and can’t thank them enough for letting us taking a peek at their urban havens.
Here are the 4 community gardens that received us in their grounds:
Alioto Community Garden is a small space located in the ebullient neighbourhood of Mission. It hosts 26 plots (with a 2 years waiting list) that are tended by an heterogeneous mix of people, from 20 somethings to seniors. Outside of fenced area of the raised beds the garden has a playground and benches for families and locals to play and relax.
Dearborn Community Garden is also located in Mission, a couple of blocks away from sunny Dolores Park. This garden has gone through some struggle in its inception and the gardeners hold a strong sense of community due to the history but also in face of the changes their neighbourhood is going through in recent years due to gentrification.
I was welcomed by gardener Marko Serpas with some iced herbal tea and fresh sliced tomatoes (from the garden, of course). I also had the pleasure of having long time members Lisa and Fred talking about Dearborn’s past and present, with Johnny recording me (!) with his camera.
This garden has 44 plots with 200+ people in the waiting list (Johnny had just gotten a plot after more than 12 years in the list). But aside of gardening and food growing, Dearborn is a gathering place for the community. It was described to me as a sacred space and life saver, and it has hosts picnics, weddings and memorial services. A special place, indeed.Read More›