Marcia showing me her plot
A 10 minute transcribe of this 20 min interview
October 13th 2018
Interviewing Marcia at LaGuardia Place Garden
Transcription of Interview
Alicia questioned: When did you begin gardening here?
Marcia responds: 30 years ago
Alicia questioned: Wow. So, do you live in the city
Marcia responds: I do
Alicia questioned: What made you want to begin gardening
Marcia responds: I gardened all of my life
Alicia questioned: Really?
Marcia responds: My dad did so I helped him as a kid. Then I lived in very rural Vermont and gardened there. So, I missed it when I came to the city. I signed up for this garden
Alicia questioned: So as soon as you moved here you signed up
Marcia responds: Yes, and I was on a waiting list for five years
Alicia questioned: Wow. Where is your plot?
Marcia responds: Do you want to see it?
Alicia questioned: Yes, well I see you are eating so after not right now, please eat your food first I apologize.
Marcia responds: Okay yes, I’ll show you after
Alicia questioned: What do you grow in your plot
Marcia responds: Well everyone can grow whatever they want in theirs, mines perennials, annuals and vegetables.
Alicia questioned: Do you cook with all of your food that you grow
Marcia responds: Yes, I do
Alicia questioned: What specific vegetables do you grow
Marcia responds: Well my best this summer has been tomatoes, but I grow cucumber lettuce kale, herbs spinach and then marigolds lilies roses
Alicia questioned: Are those vegetables seasonal
Marcia responds: Yes, in the winter vegetables here do not grow they freeze
Alicia questioned: Yes, too cold. Is this garden open all day all year?
Marcia responds: Its closed in the winter. The gates open from 9 to dusk and there’s gardeners here who have assigned hours and I’m talking to you today because this is my garden duty. I’m here today to talk to people
Alicia questioned: Oh, nice how does that work? Do you have a sign-up sheet?
Marcia responds: Yes, you sign up, so you know when we are supposed to be here
Alicia questioned: Is everything volunteered
Marcia responds: Yes, we are all volunteers. The lands owned by the city, so they allow us to be here. Its paid by the city. We pay the city a nominal amount for the lands. We have dues for the garden
Alicia questioned: Are they annual dues
Marcia responds: Yes
Alicia questioned: Do you have events here
Marcia responds: Uhm yes there’s music events, a couple weeks ago we had a dying event where we used plants from the garden that would leave implants on fabric
Alicia questioned: Oh, wow so natural ding with the natural colors.
Marcia responds: Yeah
Alicia questioned: was that open for the public?
Marcia responds: It was and there were quite a few people. We also host a lot of school groups. Young kids elementary. Then a group of high school kids who were supported by green thumb which is a gardening company
Alicia questioned: I have seen their trucks go by
Marcia responds: Yeah so, they supported high school and some college student to come and learn about gardening.
Alicia questioned: Do they sponsor the garden
Marcia responds: Well we are a member of green thumb. They give us materials to garden with like gloves and things. This year we were able to get compost from the dep of sanitation.
Alicia questioned: Can anyone come and put compost in it
Marcia responds: Yes, until it gets too filled up so idk what’s going on right now it may be too full. Some people don’t know what composting is. They put pits of avocados in and stuff
Alicia questioned: Oh yeah you can’t put seeds in, but can you put peels and skins of things in it
Marcia responds: Yes
Alicia questioned: Can anyone take the soil it makes
Marcia responds: Well no it’s not that much and its valuable I assume if u want some and came at the right time you could get some maybe. But it takes a long time to harvest. Maybe twice a year we empty it
Alicia questioned: Who empties it
Marcia responds: We all do and in the summer kids that signed up through the green thumb helped us with it.
Alicia questioned: What else do you have here besides the compost and garden plots
Marcia responds: BEES
Alicia questioned: Bees?
Marcia responds: Uh huh. Theres two hives.
Alicia questioned: Those drawers?
Marcia responds: Yes, there are bee hives. This summer they produced 30 lbs. of honey
Alicia questioned: Wow. Who harvests the honey?
Marcia responds: Well we all do. We have a specialist that helps us and people in the community.
Alicia questioned: Did they teach you
Marcia responds: Yes yeah
Alicia questioned: My neighbor at home, I’m from Pennsylvania originally, owns a restaurant and has bee hives and uses the honey in the restaurant. It’s so nice having it fresh. Did everyone get to take the honey home?
Marcia responds: Yes, we all got little jars
Alicia questioned: Is there one person that sort of takes care of everything a swell as everyone taking care of their own plot?
Marcia responds: Well we have a board there’s the chair person, secretary, treasurer and well let’s see there must be 5 people on the board. They sprat manage the book keeping and the sign-up sheet and all. And if somethings not being done. There’re 4 meetings a year we all attend. The garden is managed I would say communally.