I recently met an amazing woman — Anne — who introduced me to another amazing woman — Maria — who is in need of some help. Here is some background info from Anne’s website:
Maria Todd has lived at 421 Coronado Street in Los Angeles just south of the 101 Freeway for over twelve years. During that time she has propagated a large container garden. This garden functions both as a personal sanctuary and a defense in the midst of a gang infested neighborhood. There is no gate on the driveway and no bars on Maria’s ground floor windows. She has arranged her plants to help protect her and she loves them dearly.
Recently, a new building management agency has threatened to tear down her garden. Thanks to the help of Eric Garcetti’s office and members of Common Ground Gardens, the management has agreed to let us clean and organize Maria’s garden so she can keep it.
And there’s more: Maria’s husband of many years died last year and she herself has had some health issues this year. Her garden helps sustain her and it would be a tragedy for her to lose it. Maria’s garden is on a very depressing looking inner city block and it is the only “greenery” (aside from scraggly half-dead lawn) to be seen on the street. Her garden benefits not just Maria, but all of those in the surrounding neighborhood.
So Anne and I have arranged a day for a group of us to come help clean up and organize the garden so that it is more “acceptable” to the building management company and so that she may continue to enjoy it. This is all with Maria’s blessing, of course. That day is Sunday, November 15.
This is an opportunity, before the craziness of the holidays sets in, to lend a hand and really make a difference in someone’s quality of life. It’s also a great opportunity to have some fun gardening and listening to Brazilian music with a good group of people. All levels of gardeners are welcome! even if you’ve never done any before. It’s not a large area – it’s just full of plants. It’s an inspiration to see what she’s created for herself with whatever resources she could find.
We also need as many terra cotta pots as we can get our hands on, especially larger ones. If you have any to donate, they would be very much appreciated. We want to transplant as many plants out of the plastic containers as possible. If the pots are chipped or cracked, that is fine — as long as they can hold soil, I’d love to have them. Even if you cannot work with us on Sunday, please let me have your unused pots. I’ll arrange to pick them up.
Please feel free to forward this on to anyone who might be interested. Even if you are not in L.A. you may have friends or family here, so please spread the word. For details and to rsvp, email me at: