Monday, September 16, 2013

The many gardens of our organization

Everyone's busy
 at Pennsylvania Railroad Garden
Given the recent press coverage by NBC Bay Area, I thought it would be good to post a quick overview and hopefully answer any questions our reads may have.

We are very fortunate to be able to garden in San Francisco and have created a few public gardens that we invite you to visit. All of the gardens are publicly accessible, open all hours, and are collectively managed by volunteers from the community. Our mission is to create beautiful, accessible public green spaces in our neighborhood, Potrero Hill, in San Francisco.

Volunteer Team from The Presidio Group
at Pennsylvania Garden
We'd love to see you at our next workday, which is always held the first Saturday of the month from 10am to noon, and our next workday is Saturday  here. We've also held workdays for interested community groups and businesses, so if you have a large group that would like to volunteer many hands make light work and there is always plenty to do!
October 5th. You can find more information about workdays

You can also donate directly to the garden and don't hesitate to contact us if you have some exciting plants or other things to donate.

Here is a quick overview of the gardens
Pennsylvania Garden - the first garden,
Dogs are welcome to visit all of the gardens
started by Annie in 2008, is now a lush collection of beautiful plants that thrive on this sunny hill. This garden is in partnership with SFPA, DPW and Caltrans and is located on Pennsylvania Avenue at 18th.
Pennsylvania Railroad Garden - the newest garden, which runs the entire 100 block of Pennsylvania Avenue, and features exceptionally drought-tolerant plantings and 23 street trees. This garden is in partnership with SFPA, CCG, PUC and DPW.
Mariposa Center Garden - What was once an illicit entrance to the railroad tracks is now a cute garden featuring mostly
Nate and Paloma tidy up
 the Pennsylvania Triangle Garden
native plants across from Center Hardware.
Triangle Garden - this lovely triangular shaped garden was designed and installed by the Potrero Hill Garden Club, and it is now maintained by us - it's just across the street from Pennsylvania Garden.

Hope to see you around the garden soon!

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Tags begone!

Christian zaps tags
In the last week one huge black grafitti tag on the redwood fence at Pennsylvania Railroad Garden turned into a dozen - the entire length of the fence was covered. So disappointing... though not unexpected of course.

Today after I set up the hoses to water the trees and picked up all the trash on the street I was joined by the wonderful Jackie and her husband Christian and all their power tools. Together we spent a couple hours buffing the tags out. Presto - magically clean fence!

Jackie and Christian
The next step is to plant some of the millions of Agaves John and Matt got in Healdsburg this week, all along that fence. There's nothing quite like getting stabbed in the shins to make the average tagger give up, in my experience at PG. Natural urban blight repellant, thy name is Agave.

So, dear taggers - take note: we're going to be removing your tags; why not come to a workday and contribute something meaningful instead?

Sunday, September 8, 2013

NBC Bay Area, volunteers and lots of agaves

Yesterday's volunteer day was hot hot hot - what a weekend of roasting weather!

Some of our core volunteers came out to play: Emily, Nate, Carlin, Keyvan, Anna, Mary, John, Eliot, Amanda and I worked up quite a sweat doing lots of tasks.

The Amaryllis belladonna and Chasmanthes were cut back by Carlin, Nate did some twig border work, Anna sprayed vinegar on weeds to kill them, Mary deadheaded Agapanthus, John turned the compost and lots of weeds were pulled garden-wide. I cut back some Watsonias and Agapanthus too.

Oh yeah - and NBC Bay area was there to film it all! I got miked up for the workday and had to try not to swear as much as I usually do (!) while being followed around by the lovely Garvin and Claire from NBC. It was sort of fun!

The spot airs a week on Tuesday and I'll post a link when it's online. They came down to my house after the workday to do an interview too - as a result of preparing for that our house is now nice and clean, so at least there's that...

In the meantime John and Matt were in Healdsburg collecting Agaves and all sorts of goodies from a garden that was being demolished - how tragic. They came back around 3pm with carloads of amazing things. Huge Agaves, stunning Puyas, gorgeous Yuccas - such cool stuff. Among them:

Dyckia - a ground cover type
Agave americana "Lemon Lime"
Agave angustifolia 
Agave pachycentra (mislabeled?)
Agave "Rosa Gorda"
Agave salmiana "Butterfingers"
Agave weberi (maybe)
Puya alpestris (maybe)
Puya - some kind of giant, silvery one
Yucca aloifolia "Marginata"
Yucca elephantipes "Variegata"

Mental! We planted a few right away and today Matt planted some more. Awesome haul guys!!!
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