MONROVIA, Calif. – Many Monrovia residents are developing a green thumb by growing their own food thanks to a new city project.
The new community garden has 21 rentable plant beds and eight that are used for demonstrations. Locals are welcome to attend free classes about growing food at home.
A lot of city dwellers want a garden, but they don’t have the space in an apartment. Monrovia residents can rent plant beds in the community garden while learning how to grow their own food.
Giangelo Leos, is a Monrovia resident using the garden to grow banana peppers, bell peppers, bush beans, cherry tomatoes and Roma tomatoes. He barely needs to buy produce at the grocery store anymore thanks to the new garden.
“It’s super calming and yeah it’s just the best. Gardening,” said Leos.
The plant beds available for rent 3-feet-by-7-feet. Each one costs $60 for the entire year. The garden was created through a city partnership with Mountainside Communion Church located on Colorado Boulevard.
Along with the rented plant beds, there is an open garden space, where anyone is welcome to produce grown by the gardeners.
Program Director Kristin Ritzau has a PhD in religion and ecology and thinks more people need to get their hands dirty.
“We live in a society especially in L.A. where we don’t; get to see a lot of vegetables grow even though CA is a huge agricultural state. In L.A. County just putting your hands in the dirt isn’t something we do a lot of the time. So it’s really fun to especially in the evening our neighbors have rearranged their walks just to come by and see what we’re growing,” said Ritzau.
The garden is all about inclusion. There are even raised plant beds for people with disabilities. Additionally, the garden has a compost station for anyone is the community to drop off items.
“If someone moves out I’ll probably take a second bed if I can,” said Leos.