The High Point and New Holly Farm stands will open for the season on Wednesday, July 7th

I am very excited to be able to start walking to get my vegetables for the week! With my dog no less.

The farm stands will be open every Wednesday from 4:00pm to 7:00pm until September 29, 2010.  Gardeners living in the High Point and New Holly neighborhoods grow, harvest and market their fresh produce. It does not get any more local or fresher!

The New Holly farm stand is located at S Holly Park Drive and 40th Ave S in southeast Seattle (2 blocks SW of the Othello light-rail station).  Find it on the map here:

The HighPoint farm stand is located at 32nd SW and SW Juneau Street in West Seattle (3 blocks north of the new High Point Neighborhood Center).  Find it on the map here:

Seattle Market Gardens is a program developed with the community by the City of Seattle P-Patch Community Gardening Program in collaboration with the Seattle Housing Authority and P-Patch Trust.  For more information, check out or contact Bunly Yun at (206) 240-2093 or Julie Bryan at (206) 257-8257.

Seattle Market Gardens also has a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program. Participants receive subscriptions of vegetables that they pick up weekly at one of the gardens or at a designated location in North Seattle. Subscription plans range from $15.00 to $25.00 per week. For more information, please contact Michelle K. Jones at (206) 372-6593 or

This summer, participate in the second annual Garden-based Food and Nutrition Fair held at the Lutheran Church of the Good Shepherd at 2116 E. Union in central Seattle. The date and time are to be announced. This event focuses on health, nutrition and wellness.  One highlight is the sharing of different recipes which incorporate vegetables from the New Holly and HighPoint gardens. It is an opportunity for veggie lovers from assorted neighborhoods to come together to engage in activities, learn, eat and have fun! For more information regarding the Garden-based Food and Nutrition Fair, contact Michelle K. Jones at (206) 372-6593.

Top 10 from Sustainable Industries brought a Top 1 to my attention – Warmboard

This started as a post on my Facebook Page, Westside Green Living With Wendy. Then I realized it really should have started on my blog and gone the other direction.

Last week I attended the online presentation of the Top 10 new products from Sustainable Industries. I am very excited about “Warmboard“. They answered my question about it in their blog. It’s something we can actually install in our condo townhouse since it doesn’t modify anything (it can go over the existing plywood subfloor) and then we can put anything we want over the top of it! We really like some of the cork products we have seen, which also feel less “cold” to the stocking feet.

It will be interesting to see what the energy cost difference might be. We currently run electric baseboard heat only on the main floor in the largest area – kitchen/living room – and our bathroom in the mornings and both are on Honeywell programmable thermostat. The top floor is always plenty warm, and the lowest level we only travel thru to the garage (and the cats have fur) so are ok without heating it (it’s really nice in the summer). I think I would install the Warmboard only on the main level, I bet that will heat the same as how the house is heated now.

Have you seen any products that excite you?

18 homes/condominiums for sale in High Point (West Seattle)

I was doing a quick search for a friend who is considering moving up to a larger home here and there have been some price drops and a couple of new listings in the last week that I wanted to share with you.

You could be my next door neighbor – on either side. If you shared a front porch with me you would get to enjoy the smell of lemon blossoms right now. It’s heavenly!

See High Point Homes For Sale

My lovely home in High Point in West Seattle (along with a few others belonging to my neighbors!)

Speaking of community gardening, here’s some info for Snohomish County

If you have an interest in promoting food gardening for community or neighborhood food gardens, food bank gardens, school gardens or are involved in fostering food gardening for food security, come join us –  meet, greet and network – on Friday June 25th from 6-9pm.  

RSVP please but don’t let that stop you if you suddenly decide you have time to come. 
Bring any literature to share with like-minded folk.
Brief briefing on the program and lots of networking.
Door prizes!
Resource table (put your name on your references or label “display only”)

McCollum Park – Directions

Sharon J. Collman
Extension Educator, Horticulture and IPM
Washington State University Snohomish County Extension
600 128th St. SE
Everett, WA 98208
425-338-3994 fax

Urban Agriculture in Seattle – a decade long personal gardening saga comes full circle

I started urban gardening in Seattle in 1999, in the back yard of a friend of mine about 3 miles from where I lived in West Seattle. She provided the space and materials, and we provided the labor. It proved difficult to remember to drive the 10 minutes each way to water during that hot summer and some of the food was wasted. And it was lonely there. So in 2000 I moved to Marra Farm P-Patch in South Park. But the crab grass down there drove me crazy – even working nearby and going over to my garden after work it seemed like all I did was weed weed weed.

In 2001 we bought our first house and I moved to Delridge P-Patch in 2002 after changing jobs and South Park being the wrong direction for my work commute. I gardened in Delridge for three seasons then moved my gardening home to my quarter acre lot. I joined the Board of Directors of P-Patch Trust in 2004, and became Secretary.

I adopted a dog in 2005 and was not as attentive to my p-patch as I should have been, driving the mile to the garden to water at about the time I knew I didn’t all my plants would die. The dog was bored sitting there while all I did was weed weed weed – not crab grass this time but something equally obnoxious. My next-door neighbor took down a beautiful Douglas fir tree in his yard – which I hated him for – but now I had sun in my yard so I moved my gardenign home. Health conditions made it impossible for me to maintain the garden at the standard I believed it should be at beginning in 2004 which was also another reason to move home. But I was sick of essentially standing on my head weeding. You kneel, dig with one hand pull with the other and your feet fall asleep. Or you lean on one arm and work wth the other. It was just work. The occasional tomato or strawberry just did not make it worth it. The big windstorm of December 2006 took down the massive trees on our own lot and it just wasn’t the same after that. Then the dandelions and creeping buttercup got the best of me and we sold the property in 2007 and moved to High Point. To a townhome. With no yard. Where you actually get in trouble for messing around with the plants in front of your house. I am in heaven.

Don’t get me wrong, I still have a garden. We dug up all of the plants I loved and brought them with us – I have a 200 square foot deck garden on the north side of my home filled with massive pots of hostas, huckleberry and salal and sword fern, maidenhair fern, many herbs and types of mint (for mojitos!), pots of bamboo, and some miscellaneous pots of shade preferring plants that a neighbor in the building facing us gave to us because her deck faced west and her plants were dying. And on my front porch, which faces south, I actually grow tomatoes, banana pepper and strawberries in pots, too. And other various edibles that I find entertaining. Oh, I have an amazing Meyer lemon tree that I have been babying since 2007 that is now in full bloom and it smells wonderful. And a small lime shrub. (Photo gallery below is the “Plots To Pots” transformation)

I’ve been walking past the p-patch garden built in the last year in Commons Park and wished I could be a part of the gardening community, but my health just won’t let me crawl around on the ground and garden. I still know most of the Seattle P-Patch staff and the Board of Directors (which I left in 2007 after 3 years of service), and whenever I would see the garden coordinator I would bug her for an ADA raised planter so that I and others like myself could garden while standing up. This is why gardening in pots has been so wonderful for me – I don’t have to bend, stoop or crawl to pull the occasional piss of grass or stalk of Herb Robert (also called “Stinky Bob” ). Completely manageable. (And don’t tell anyone, but I still pull the occasional dandelion out in front of my house.)

On Friday the dog and I walked by and the ADA planter was finally there – a wooden shell with just a bit of dirt thrown in the bottom, clearly waiting for someone to finish filling it. I sent an email to my p-patch contact, and she gave me a link to go get on the waiting list for the standing garden planter. I don’t know if anyone else has reserved it, or if it’s truly got my name on it since I have been asking for it for a few years. It looks like my gardening experience is coming full circle. A decade or more of growing plants in the city – so many ways to do it. I am looking forward to being part of a gardening community again. And it will be so easy to water every morning that it needs it since I walk the dog all over the neighborhood three times a day anyway. (I just hope no one steals my food!! I am afraid the planter might be a target.)

The email I got back from the form that I filled out on the web site to get on the waiting list offered some fantastic resources for eager gardeners who want to get their hands dirty sooner rather than later. For me, I can wait until this stand-up gardening space is ready for a gardener. But 10 years ago I was desperate to grow my own lettuce and tomatoes and lemon cucumbers and this information is very valuable to eager urban gardeners in Seattle.

While you’re waiting for a P-Patch community garden plot:

With the huge and growing interest in gardening and urban agriculture, you will have to wait awhile before getting a community garden plot. Some of the following websites may help get you gardening sooner.

Urban Garden Share  and Urban Land Army click on Land Link. These two web sites try to connect those who have spare land with those who want to garden

2010 Year of Urban Agriculture: The city sponsored web site is part of Seattle’s 2010 Year of Urban Agriculture; it list news, events and activities

Urban Farm Hub. This local websites compiles an amazing amount of urban agriculture related news.

Community Harvest of West Seattle, Garden Helpers – Connecting New Gardeners with Community Mentors and Community Orchard. Learn more at

Solid Ground- Lettuce Link (an innovative food and gardening program growing and giving since 1988) creates access to fresh, nutritious and organic produce, seeds, and gardening information for families with lower incomes in Seattle. To learn more and get involved at

Alleycat Acres an urban farm collective – “transforms vacant spaces to create a network of sustainable urban farms that reconnect people to food while helping to increase food security on a community level.” To Learn more visit their website at

City Fruit works neighborhood by neighborhood to help residential tree owners grow healthy fruit, to harvest and use what they can, and to share what they don’t need. To get involved visit their website at

Spring into Bed  is a grass-roots, city wide, garden building event and fundraiser – building, strengthening and celebrating the City’s flourishing community food systems

Garden your planting strip: Seattle Department of Transportation does allow gardening on planting strips with a simple permit. Click here for more information.

The photo gallery below is from my “Plots To Pots” experience – moving cherished and loved plants from our 1/4 acre lot near Puget Ridge into pots up the hill in High Point. It’s easy to remember to water these plants since they are right here – and it takes about 10 trips from the kitchen with my watering can to water everything. (Watering is the only time I really hate my low-flow water faucet. It takes so LONG to fill up the watering can!!)

Buyers Should Be Careful About Credit Use Prior to Closing


Buyers and their agents need to be aware that it is a very bad idea for buyers to increase their credit balances or to open new lines of credit shortly before they close escrow on their new home. More specifically, they should avoid such activity during the period of time between loan application and closing. This is because policies under Fannie Mae’s Loan Quality Initiative, effective June 1, 2010, requires lenders to “refresh” a borrower’s credit report just prior to closing.

Read the Full Story in today’s Realty Times

Don’t Want to Live in a Condo/Townhome? Top things to look for in identifying a low maintenance property. (Video)

GreenSpacesTV — June 21, 2010 — Call her crazy, but Wendy things this big bi-level house in the Puget park subdivision in Everett (near Silver Lake) is a condo alternative. Wendy explains how certain exterior aspects – which is where all the grueling sweaty work happens for much of the year – can be chosen or created to have your cake and eat it to. But having a super low maintenance yard, what kind of structure you live in doesn’t really matter. So if you hate the idea of a condo and want to have a little elbow room, learn what to look for to make your dream a reality.

Rethink Townhomes (Video)

GreenSpacesTV — June 21, 2010 — Wendy has an epiphany while sitting in an open house for a listing she is marketing in Everett. She realizes that this big house is almost the same as a middle unit townhome – windows on only 2 ends and solid wall on the other 2 walls. As a former townhome hater and now a townhome owner, Wendy offers a unique perspective that will help you rethink townhomes as a lifestyle alternative.