After nearly three years of planning and discussion, a community garden at Poinsettia Park is taking shape. Monday evening the plans for the garden were presented to the community on Zoom. The proposed garden site is along the tennis courts at Poinsettia Park, which is currently a 320-foot-long narrow strip of grass. Landscape architect Dean Howell presented the plan, which divides the long site into two sections and calls for 26 planter beds (including several that will be accessible for gardeners with disabilities), compost bins, a small seating area for gardening classing, and two communal garden beds that can be used as teaching gardens. Between the two sections, there’s space for a community bulletin board and a gathering space that could be used for community events, where a California native plant garden will planted. The garden will be “seeded” by Mid City West Community Council, but it will be operated with a separate board of governors in partnership with the non-profit Los Angeles Community Garden Council.
The idea for the garden has been discussed at the Mid City West Community Council for years. Board members David Sobel and Scott Epstein told the Buzz the council saw the garden as a way to create community and address issues of sustainability. But equally important, the garden could address the needs of residents of the council’s area who are apartment dwellers with limited gardening options. Over the years, council members investigated various locations for the garden in Pan Pacific Park, but when Epstein suggested Poinsettia Park, the response from the community was enthusiastic.
“The Poinsettia Park Community Garden is one of the most exciting things I’ve worked on at Mid City West, and it was wonderful to feel the enthusiasm from the community on Monday night,” said board chair Scott Epstein. “One thing I hope people will take away from this project is that it’s possible to do big things with small spaces. Building a more sustainable LA requires that we make the best use of the space that we have.”
David Sobel told the Buzz what’s next to make the garden a reality.
“Now that we have the framework for a design, I will start costing out some elements and putting together a draft budget. From there we can begin to solicit funding support,” said Sobel. But first, the City’s Recreation and Parks Department needs to officially approve the project, something Sobel is hoping will happen as soon at the appropriate committees start meeting again. (Their meetings have stopped due to the pandemic.) Still, he’s hopeful that construction could begin in the fall.
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