The Garden in Winter
The Woodbine Street Block Association Garden is located at 146 Woodbine Street
in Bushwick, Brooklyn, New York City •
Map with subway & walking directions to the garden


The gardeners of "Woodbine" during an early-season meeting.

Happenings in the Garden • 2010

In July, the garden played host to an important meeting of New York City Garden Coalition, a group fighting to permanently protect our city's community gardens. Not all are as safe as Woodbine, a Brooklyn-Queens Land Trust garden! This was the group's first meeting with Parks Department Deputy Commissioner, Larry Scott Blackmon. Pictured (standing): GreenThumb's Edie Stone, NYCCGC's Karen Washington.


In Spring 2010, we were honored to have two of Martha Stewart's top horticulturalists stop by for lunch and a tour! Other than a grim disgnosis for an ailing tree peony, we had a great time. Pictured: Woodbine Director Sean-Michael Fleming, Master Gardener Andrew Beckman, Martha Stewart Living Magazine Senior Associate Gardening Editor Stacey Hirvela, gardener James Paladino, and "Original Gardener" Dallas Cousins.


In August, the garden held workshops as part of the annual block party day. An earlier session for adults focused on food: simple, healthy, and tasty recipies, all made using fresh ingredients from our community herb garden. Above, participants in the very popular pickle making workshop for kids, displaying the rewards of their labor. At rear, right: Woodbine gardener and wonderful volunteer, Margie Courts.
In June, we were flattered that a pair of gray catbirds (Dumetella carolinensis) selected a weigela bush right next to our gazebo to build a nest in, and very excited when we noticed them protecting a small clutch of eggs. The parents and their babies were watchful but also somehow trusting. When we found the nest empty one day, we were scared, but soon found the youngsters, happily hopping about on the composting bins.

Videos: A Remembrance of Summer (2009) To get us through the cold days of winter and stormy spring: a morning walk-through of the garden at the height of summer.

From the Archives: A Garden Grows in Bushwick (2007) Chronicles the beginnings of the garden's recent renovation.

About the Woodbine Street Block Association Garden
Founded in 1977 by the Woodbine Street Block Association, led by Nippie Green, this community garden was saved from the City's auction block in 1999 by the Trust for Public Land. We are now a Brooklyn-Queens Land Trust Garden, with support & inspiration provided by Council Member Diana Reyna, GreenThumb, Green Guerillas, Citizens Committee for New Yrk City, Brooklyn Botanic Garden's GreenBridge Community Garden Alliance, GrowNYC, New York Horticultural Society, and Consolidated Edison.

For more information about the garden, EcoStation:Bushwick guided tours, private events, or membership,
please contact our director: Email: sean @ woodbinegarden.org; Tel: 646-393-9305.

2009 Archives:
2008 Archives:
WSG Chosen as Drip Irrigation System Site by Brooklyn Botanic Garden's GreenBridge
Celebrate Urban Birds!
Make Music New York Summer Solstice Celebration
Mother's Day Weekend Plant & Flower Sale
Earth Day / Opening Day 2008
2007 Archives:
Mother's Day Weekend Plant Sale!
Garden Photos & News
Garden Plans - Master Plan Renderings

–– 2009 ––

Finally! After two years of red tape, the Paved Pathway Project is finally underway.
The new pathway and patio will make the garden even more welcoming for our members, guests, and visitors.
A big thank you to Horticultural Society of NewYork's Green Team -
and to some young volunteers from Hope Gardens Community Center.
Join us during Earth Week for the grand unveiling!

Calling all Friends of the Garden! Join us on Saturday September 26 for one of our favorite events of the year - the Autumnal Equinox Virgo Power Pot Luck Harvest Celebration!

This event is one of our favorites for the simple fact that it marks the end of summer - which is like the end of the holiday season to gardeners! Stop by and see all the exciting changes this year has brought! The party will be from 2pm - 6pm, with a raindate of Sunday the 27th. For more information, call Sean-Michael at 646-393-9305 or Verena James at 917-710-7726. Bring a friend! Bring a dish! Donations in support of the garden will also be accepted.

Support your local gardens - and farmers! Stop by the growing Bushwick Farmers' Market and say hi to Woodbine Gardeners Kendall, Hans, and Sean (who happen to work & volunteer there) and pick up some of the Good Stuff: New York State fruits, vegetables, fruit juices, honey - even locally-made breads and cakes! The only farmers' market to offer bicycle-blended smoothies! Located at the corner of Linden St. & Broadway, the Market is ppen every Wednesday from 10am - 6pm through November 4. Be sure not to miss the first annual Bushwick Harvest Fair on Wednesday September 23. Music, food, workshops for gardeners, a live animal show for kids, grilled corn and cider... For more info click here.
–– SUMMER 2009 ––

Love Your Block - Recap & Thanks!

Thank you, residents and fans of Woodbine Street for your awesome efforts on May 16 - and thanks to Citizens Committee for New York City and the Mayor's Office for the opportunity to participate in Love Your (NYC) Block! Our project - the cleanup and planting of 30 planters and 40 tree pits in a one-day event disguised as a block party - was a huge success and a lot of fun to boot, with great retro music, and a delicious cookout. The plantings have grown lush and beautiful, and if there was ever any question, Woodbine Street's positive vibe is definitely back!

Perhaps the most exciting result of the big event is that it sparked an epiphany in Councilmember Diana Reyna's mind when she stopped by and saw all the community spirit - and now Woodbine St. has overwhelmingly agreed to become a kid-friendly, car-free, Police Athletic League "Play Street" for the summer! Fantastic!


Scenes from Love Your (NYC) Block!
Woodbine Street – May 16, 2009

Summer Solstice Music Celebration – Sunday June 21st
Part of Make Music New York!  – it's a day of music, food, and fun
in our little green slice of heaven - the only MMNY event
featuring a pedal-powered sound system (by Artistic Evolution)!


Seabeast 3pm
Lina Villegas 4pm
Rev. Goddess Charmaine 5pm (garden blessing)
Music by DJ Poncho
...plus special guests TBA

Gates open 2pm - Admission is FREE - BBQ 4/S or BYO

–– SPRING 2009 ––

NEWS FLASH! Our stretch of Woodbine Street is now an official Love Your (NYC) Block! finalist! Chosen as one of twelve projects citywide by the Citizens Committee for New York City and the Office of the Mayor, our block cleanup this year will be taken to the next level as the garden leads the charge to refurbish the block's signature yard signs (see pic) and planters, and create new plantings around the streets many trees. During the event, a panel of judges will be stopping by to evaluate the progress - but what they're really looking for is community participation - so come on out and show your love for this great block! It will be a fun day of painting and planting (and music and food!) Saturday May 16th, 9am! Interested in helping devise a plan of attack? Contact us!


ON THE HORIZON: Our Make Music New York Summer Solstice Celebration returns! Mark your calendars: Sunday June 21, Noon - 8pm. A day of music in our little slice of the great outdoors!


2009 is Flying By...

UPDATE • SPRING 2009: It's only March and the garden is already abuzz with activity! Thanks to a grant from Con Ed last year, construction on a new seating area is well underway, making great use of the shadier side of the garden. Horticulture Society of New York's Green Team, under the direction of John Cannizzo, has been working since January on this Very Large Structure - designed by our own Mr.Kendall. When finished, there will be a rustic pergola roof (halfway up) made from the limbs of a felled tree. Then come the vines, which will emanate from the two built-in planters...

If all goes as planned (!), the next project will be a stone pathway leading from the front gate into the garden. That project, also being done with the Green Team, is being made possible by a generous grant from the Office of Councilmember Diana Reyna. Unsurprisingly (it being city money) the project is currently tied up in red tape - but we hope to get it unstuck and moving again shortly.

JOIN US: April 22 is Earth Day - and Earth Day is Opening Day at the Garden! The garden is happy to welcome Open Space Gallery's photo exhibit, Unseen Friends in the Garden during our open house (noon - 7pm), which marks the debut of our new pergola-trellis-seating area. Stop by and see what's growing on!Stop

Across the street at Hope Gardens Community Center, EcoStation:Bushwick and New York City Housing Authority's Gardening & Greening Program will be presenting an "afterschool Earth jam" (3:30 - 6:30pm), with participants from PS 377, PS 291's Beacon Program, Ridgewood-Bushwick Youth Center, Bushwick Campus, Saratoga Square, and Hope Gardens Tenants Association. Participants will be touring our garden, making "reusical" instruments, building a butterfly garden, and preparing healthy homemade pizza for all! Eco-rapper Presice will also be on hand to keep it real - with a live performance at the day's finalé! (scroll over image for Hope Gardens poster)

–– 2008 Recap ––

Wow 2008 was a very busy year in the garden indeed! The garden was bursting with color and life from April to October, with a growing membership and circle of friends, delicious crops, construction projects, and a slew of public events, including our Eath Day opening, Mother's Day Weekend Plant & Flower Sale, ART CIRCUS, Make Music New York Summer Solstice Celebration, Celebrate Urban Birds Day with EcoStation:Bushwick!, the unveiling of a drip irrigation system installed by BASE students and Brooklyn Botanic Garder's GreenBridge, and the Autumnal Equinox/Virgo Power/Fall Harvest Potluck! Whew!

The Woodbine St. Block Association Garden also received grants from some very thoughtful supporters: Independence Community Foundation, Consolidated Edison, and the Office of Councilmember Diana Reyna. We thank them all for their support!

–– 2008 Archives ––

September 27, 2008 - Autumnal Equinox/Virgo Power/Fall Harvest Potluck
Back by popular demand, it's our Autumnal Equinox/Virgo Power/Fall Harvest Potluck! This season-ending event brings together the gardeners and the neighborhood, with everyone gathering to enjoy the garden and its bounty and each other's company.

WSG Chosen as Drip Irrigation Site!

The Woodbine Street Garden was proud to be selected as a site for a eco-friendly, water-saving drip irrigation system, installed this summer by Brooklyn Botanic Garden's GreenBridge community garden outreach program and it's crew of three bright students from BASE (Brooklyn Academy of Science and the Environment). Read all about it!

EcoStation: Bushwick - Celebrate Urban Birds!

On August 22, Garden Steward Sean-Michael Fleming led a day of bird-centric activities - Celebrate Urban Birds! - with youth from Hope Gardens' Summer Camp; kids built birdhouses in the garden while learning about bird behaviors, enjoyed a cookout, then took a short field trip to the Linden-Bushwick Community Garden, where they planted "native" plants (kindly donated by the Brooklyn Botanic Garden's GreenBridge program) in the Secret Garden Urban Wildlife Sanctuary. When mature, these plants will provide food and shelter for birds.

June 21: Make Music New York!


The garden joined about 600 fellow outdoor locations on Saturday, June 21st for the city-wide festival of music, Make Music New York! The garden gates opened at 4pm for an evening of eclectic music from Jei Fong, Michael Mirlas Collective, and newcomer Azalee Dan. Reverend Goddess Charmaine, in-tune interfaith minister and spiritual adviser to the hip, was be on hand to offer a solstice benediction as the sun set on a beautiful day. Our thanks go to the friendly, warm, and very talented performers that day.


Scenes from our Make Music New York Summer Solstice Music Celebration.

May 6 - 11 (Tue -Sun): Mother's Day Plant Flower Sale!
Surprise Your Mom! Support Your Local Gardens!
This year we teamed up with the Linden-Bushwick Block Association Garden and hosted this second-annual fundraiser in both gardens! The previous year's sale was successful, but many people asked for flowering, "Mom-friendly" plants - so that's exactly what we delivered: scaveola. verbena, impatiens, gazania, geraniums, dracaena, angelonia, begonias, zinnias...
Unfortunately, we kinda over-ordered to avoid delivery costs, so ended up not making much money. We did, however, make some new friends and have lots of flowers to add to the garden!

April 22: Earth Day with EcoStation:Bushwick at Hope Gardens and "Season Opener" for the Woodbine St. Garden!

In the garden, we welcomed neighbors to our Houseplant Clinic and did our best to treat and cure "houselpants behaving badly;" plants were repotted (BYOP) while-you-wait! Meanwhile, EcoStation:Bushwick hosted a very well-attended day of fun activities at Hope Gardens Community Center, including an introduction to worm composting, world music, crafts, and a "slow food" cooking demonstration. After lunch, the kids marched all the biodegradable leftovers and kitchen scraps from lunch over to the garden for composting, then we planted a row of close to 40 sunflowers alongside the building! Special thanks to Bushwick garden buddies Mihail Kossev and Marisa Day!

April 12: Secret Garden Cleanup
This garden, where several of our gardeners have been volunteering and helping this massive garden shake off its sleepy shackles and realize its potential - is definitely taking shape. The cleanup was a big success, and the garden now boasts new flower beds, new gardeners, new energy. Invaluable assistance from GreenThumb's Land Restoration Project, Green Guerillas (thanks, Hannah!), New York Cares (thanks, Jacquie!), and folks from all over our fair city. Click here for more information.

–– 2007 Archives ––


P.S. 377 Pre-K kids stop by for a butterfly release event...then returned the next week with
some new inhabitants for the garden - crickets!

Before the crickets' release, we introduced the kids to some current residents
of the garden, including a centipede, a millipede, a grub, ants, and even a firefly!


The first graduates of EcoStation: Bushwick,
attendees of Hope Gardens Community Center's Summer Camp.

Take Action! The Woodbine Street Block Association Garden supports the efforts of the NYC Farm Bill Workgroup, and you should, too! Read more about needed revisions to the 2007 Farm Bill, which will ensure (among other things) improved access to healthy food through stronger food stamp and school lunch programs, support of New York farmers, and environmental sustainability. Read "A 2007 Farm Bill that Meets the Needs of New York City."

Mother's Day Weekend Plant Sale, May 12-13, 2007

Thanks to all those who stopped by and made our first annual Mother's Day Weekend Plant Sale a big success!

Special thanks go to CENYC, the Council on the Environment of New York City, who provided the plants, some of which are now flourishing in our garden.

Special thanks also to some very generous local merchants, namely, Associated Supermarket on Broadway, People's Department Store, and Krown Hardware.

Thanks also to Ben & Jerry's, who supplied ice cream treats for the event - which were extremely popular!

Very special thanks to the garden "old timers" from the block, who stopped by to relax and share stories of days past and hopes for brighter, greener days ahead for the garden.


Garden Update - May 2007

We are now in final preparations for our Plant Sale this weekend (May 12 & 13).
We have been putting up posters, handing out flyers,
and hounding local banks and merchants for donations.

Below are some photos of one of our first projects - the garden entrance area.
We dragged large tree limbs we found nearby to make a natural border for the
first of several flower beds, which benefitted greatly from the addition of a layer
of imported compost (from The Bronx!).


From late March, 2007:

The front of the garden needed help...

...sifting the available soil was a good start...

...adding bags of "imported" compost? Essential!

Now things are beginning to look much healthier!
March 24, 2007

As you can see from these March 24, 2007 photos, things are a little dreary in the garden -
not unusual for early spring. Underused for several years, a group of volunteers has undertaken
the task of breathing new life into the garden (see plans below) - stay tuned for updates!

Big Plans!

We do indeed have some big plans for this 2500 sq. ft. garden, including rearranging the existing beds
(to maximize the available sunlight), adding several flower beds (primarily perennials), a composting area,
and a winding path that invites exploration.

All of this depends on the contributions of people concerned about helping create
a living oasis in a densely-populated area in desperate need of green spaces.
Can YOU help? Contact the Garden Stewards today!

before

after?

"Friends of The Garden, Friends of The Earth"