The "Fat Radish Community Garden", considered a neighborhood treasure at 5631 S.E. Mall Street, is getting ready for spring. The nonprofit garden is part of the Urban Farm Collective, a program of the Oregon Sustainable Agricultural Land Trust. Their mission is to bring neighbors together. And to transform vacant lots into neighborhood food gardens for education and community-building.
The garden was established a decade ago, and is managed by K. Vera Brink. A wooden kiosk at the front of the garden gives a short history of the site, and also features a small "free seed" cabinet for sharing garden seeds. A nearby plot is fenced with old bike wheels, and ornamented with small garden statuary.
An adjacent driveway leads to a home at the back of the garden owned by Christopher Bonnichsen. Here, his chicken coop (and numerous marauding squirrels) overlook the neat garden rows. Bonnichsen tells THE BEE he enjoys watching visitors and passers-by interact with the garden. "It's a beautiful social experiment, and a blessing for the street," he says. "I eat out of the garden nearly every day."
A collaborative mural painted last year on the community-built tool shed illustrates "planting cycles by the moon". Three different garden styles have been practiced at the site over the years, and two small scarecrows lend authenticity to the site. More about it can be found at – http://www.facebook.com/FatRadishCommunityGarden
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