Every Now and Then I Need A Post Like This To Restore My Faith in the Beautiful Life


Given the crime we’ve heard about Friday and Saturday nights, I was relieved to capture this story. Actually, I was relieved to receive a tip from a reader to check it out. Thanks! The reader writes:

“Check out the garden behind the Girls and Boy’s Club at 14th and Chapin. The garden runs along the alley separating the club and the Hillside condo building. This area was completely overgrown with weeds, and a Hillside resident, Don (a retired Marine) got permission to cut it down and plant a community garden. He’s volunteered all of his own resources and time to make it happen because he believes every block should have a community garden. For people living on that block, they can probably secure a corner of it if they help him maintain the lot.”

Don (on the left of the photo above) was a super nice guy. He started the garden about 3 weeks ago. He thought it was a shame that the lot “was all weedy when we can make something beautiful”. Ah, music to my ears. A neighbor helped him clean the lot and some other neighbors have already done some planting. Roland (on the right hand side of the photo above), also a former Marine, will help maintain the plot along with some other neighbors. Folks have already planted an herb garden, blueberries, grapes, apple trees, a sunflower bed and a vegetable garden including celery, beans, tomatoes, carrots, peppers, sweet corn and more.

I’m so glad to hear about this type of development. I think it is equally as important as the new dining and drinking options. Thank God folks like Don are willing and able to see a garden where others see a weedy lot.


More photos after the jump.



Vegetable Garden:


Apple trees will be planted in these circles:


Herb Garden:


9 Comment

  • what a little idea and a big heart can do. i hope these plants thrive.

  • i hope the fact that theyre ex military isnt lost on anyone…some of the best people i know are the ones that joined the service and gave their time to country, and it looks like these guys are two shining examples of that.

    great looking garden, cant wait to see more pics in a couple of months!

  • Thanks to these guys for helping make not only the Club but the neighborhood a more attractive place!

  • Thanks for highlighting this great initiative.

  • There IS grant money available for community gardens. People interested should search Grants.gov or http://www.infoed.org/new_spin/spinmain.asp

  • Ditto to what Christopher said — I love that these guys are ex-Marines and not hippies (no offense to hippies). Looks like the beginning of a great garden!

  • Semper Fi Marines. Good work.

    To DC_Chica, no such thing as ex-Marines. As the PoP got it right, they are former Marines.

  • Hoo-rah. Kudos to these dude-o’s.

  • Awesome! Way better than a kite shop! But seriously- it’s really refreshing that these guys had a good idea, asked permission to carry it out, and got it! It seems like sometimes these good intentions get squashed when people say “no” for whatever reason.

    Hey PoP- speaking of community gardens, have you ever covered the pea patch on 14th- I think it’s around Taylor or so? I wonder what’s growing there these days…

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