First Hill welcomes new P-patch

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Workers have begun converting Horiuchi Park, located on Boren Ave. between E. Fir and E. Spruce Streets, into a community garden for Yesler Terrace residents. Photo by Rich Macdonald.

First Hill’s Yesler Terrace residents will have a new space for growing organic food, flowers, fruits and herbs thanks to the conversion of Horiuchi Park into a P-patch. The new P-patch, located on Boren Ave. between Spruce and Fir Streets is named after the late C. Paul Horiuchi, one of Seattle’s renowned artists. He is best known for the creation of the 60-foot long, curved glass wall, Seattle Mural, created in 1962, for the World’s Fair at Seattle Center.

This latest addition is the 90th P-patch community garden operated by Seattle Department of Neighborhoods P-Patch Community Gardening Program. Some 6,800 gardeners work throughout these gardens in the city and donated more than 28,000 pounds of produce to area food banks in 2013. A grant to the Seattle Housing Authority and help from the 2008 Parks and Green Spaces Levy have funded construction of the 29, one hundred-foot plots located in the P-patch.

Work parties will continue through mid-October, when construction is expected to be finished and plots will be ready for fall planting. Seattle Housing Authority residents who attend work parties and help complete the project will earn hours and be eligible to secure a plot. The cost to keep a plot in Horiuchi P-patch is free for the first year for those who help construct it. Beginning in 2016, the plot fee will be $40 per year and for those who can’t afford it, financial assistance is available.

Horiuchi has been honored throughout the design process and construction of the community garden through artistic elements and historical context of his work. Residents from First Hill and Yesler Terrace met regularly over the past two years to help plan and provide input into the construction process of the P-Patch.

Covering almost a third of an acre, the site provides views of Mount Rainier and the Rainier Valley. Upcoming work parties will be held at the site from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. Oct. 4, 11 and 18. Volunteers will be needed to help add soil, build compost bins and install a tool shed. Others are needed to bring food and beverages to the work parties, lead work parties and make phone calls to other gardeners.

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