Garden Preservation

Sunnyside Garden


Location: 13th Street( bet. Aves. B & A)

The Sunnyside Garden was established in 1985 and has a standard Green Thumb lease. The 2500 sq. ft. garden has 20 members and ten individual plots; most of the garden is dedicated to community areas. It is estimated that the garden has served 5000 people per year and 50,000 people over the years of its lifetime. The age and cultural composition of the garden people span the spectrum.

The plants, flowers, vegetables and animal species found in the garden include: mostly shade plants; two gorgeous birch trees; roses; at times, goldfish, chickens, dogs, cats, ducks and guinea pigs.

other than gardening activities the garden supports educational and cultural programs such as: poetry; art; children activities-day care, water play, snow play; parties of many natures; barbecues; performances; etc...

To clear the lot, block residents met at block meetings. Diverse groups cleared the lot along with help from pest control. The block residents constructed the fence and designed the garden. Green Thumb, Green Guerillas and other community gardens and organizations in the neighborhood donated stuff-some came from personal donations.

The garden should be saved because it is a safe space for all. Especially because children can play there. It is a natural environment, not crowded and encourages intimacy.

In terms of development threats, the garden is included in DeColosa Plaza Plan that the city has launched that included adjacent buildings that are occupied. No specific plan has been revealed as far as "new garden plan" as far as we know it may become a parking lot or private "grounds"

We seek permanent preservation of the garden so that it can not be built on and we can RE-OPEN it as this year police have barricaded it claiming "unsafe conditions" of neighboring buildings-which Judge Wilks has denounced as "not credulous".

Sunnyside is a good garden to champion regardless of what goes down with the buildings to maintain as an OPEN TO THE COMMUNITY GARDEN left in its original form or as it evolves through community gardeners, not PAVED or LANDSCAPED in an ugly sterile manner. Because it is currently in "a plan", it may be AFFECTED by activist input.

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