Thursday, July 05, 2007

Gardening in the 'hood

Originally uploaded by sweber4507
So for four years now, I have been driving past the lovely craftsman on N. Garey, just below Stater Bros. You know, the one on the west side of the street with the awesome garden out front and a stand up sign on the sidewalk most days that says, "The Garden." I've been wanting to go inside since we moved here. In recent months, I was assured by a neighbor that yes, I most definitely had to check it out.

So last weekend, I was finally child-free from 4.5 year old Mr. Big. I was so excited to finally step inside the Garden's white picket fence. I was greeted in the garden by inspiring sunflowers and once inside the house, by Dawn Van Allen, a self-described "hippy," who is the owner of the house where she both lives and works. The house itself has loads of original wood work, and is full of unique garden objects, vintage seeds varieties and, well, garden paraphernelia, for lack of a better term. I spoke with Dawn at length about the frustrations and benefits of living in Pomona. Turns out she is just as big a fan of the La Brea bread they're supposed to sell at Stater Bros as I am. We both agreed it's infuriating when Stater Bros. only sometimes carries items that are carried regularly at their other stores. She told me that there is a rumor Staters will be building a Super Staters Bros next to their present location on Garey and Alvarado.

She gave me a tour of her huge back garden/shop and plucked a perfectly juicy pluot off a tree for me to eat.

I will definitely be back to her shop when I have some spending cash (not a lot of that right now around here). I have my eye on some ultra soft cotton tank tops she was selling. She really had a bit of everything in that store.

Pomona Folk has a feature on Dawn on their website. And The Garden itself also has a website. Dawn said that she does landscape design for a living. Dawn told me that there is another Pomona blog called "Pomona Walk of Shame," but I've been unable to find it.


meg said...

Yeah, one of our neighbors recommended Dawn to us also. I'm hoping to get her over to consult about the Washingtonia palm that's about 2" from our front porch.

I didn't realize Stater's was supposed to sell La Brea bread. Seems like Trader Joe's (or the Von's on Baseline) is the closest place for good bread.

me said...

I just reposted above about the whole STater Bros./La Brea bakery situation. It really is better than the exact same bread sold at trader joe's. for now, the staters in la verne or claremont almost always has the LaBrea baguettes in stock (and la verne will heat it up for you on the spot if they don't have it out and they have some in their freezer --). But, I still haven't given up on our local Staters.