Volunteers spruce up Estelle St. P-Patch

The Estelle St. P-Patch community garden was originally built in 1990.  It is a street right of way that was overgrown and inviting to negative behaviors.  Organizing around this issue, community members worked together with the P-Patch community Gardening Program and created a community garden. After all these years and the establishment of a positive gardening community, the garden’s water system was wearing out and leaking.

 So P-Patch staff encouraged gardeners to rebuild the water system and clean up the garden.  The garden has 27 plots and the great majority of gardeners are elders form Laos, speaking Mien and Khmu. Additional assistance to do this work was needed. Erica Ellis form United Way, received a call from P-Patch  and this collaboration quickly took shape, resulting in two work parties.  The two work parties were a collaboration between SPU Solid Waste Utility- Spring Clean Program ( four transfer station passes, leaf bags and garbage bags), Department of Neighborhood’s P-Patch community Gardening Program, Starbucks Coffee ( 19 volunteers, and a grant for all the water system supplies), Safeway( Volunteers) and United Way of King County(organizational skills to coordinate volunteers and grant). Gardeners and community members  extend their thanks to all who helped make this a very successful project.   Check out the photos on Flickr!

Work party #1: April 26, 10 volunteers form Starbucks joined 7 gardeners form the Garden to  prepare the garden for a bigger work group that is described below. Three Language groups were Present, English, Mien and Khmu. They worked for two hours, when a downpour sent us all running for shelter!

Work Party #2: April 30th, 19 Starbuck and Safeway Employees joined 15 gardeners to dig a trench, lay a water line and begin coving the new water system.  4 truckloads of wood, yard waste and garbage was collected and taken to the transfer station. Four language groups were present: English, Mien, Khmu and Vietnamese. This crew of 34 people worked from 10 am until 3pm.  Then gardeners continued on until past 5pm.

The future: The gardeners still have a section of the water system to dig, lay and cover.  They also have a few truckloads of material that needs to go to the transfer station. So the story is not quite over, Stay Tuned!