REPUBLISHED FROM INGLESIDE-EXCELSIOR LIGHT.
By CAMERON A. EHRING
Mission Terrace residents opened their homes to the public on Sunday, May 6, for the second annual Mission Terrace Garden Tour, featuring 21 households, homemade treats and good company.
Each participating household was numbered on a map and made available both online, as well as printed for visitors at some of the highlighted homes. The map recommended one possible route along the tour, however visitors were encouraged to forge their own paths.
“This is a community-building event,” said participant Kerry Evensong.
Evensong stood with her friendly dog, Mr. Jake, at the end of a brick path marked with a colorful banner and chalk. Her husband, David Rew, enthusiastically offered visitors homemade pizza from a miniature pizza oven nestled among the plants and darted in between his cooking spaces.
Her garden patio splits the property’s bedrooms from the kitchen and dining areas. Miner’s Lettuce and other local varieties of vegetation are liberally displayed in pots in every corner of the yard.
“It’s truly the open living home,” Evensong said.
Evensong is also in charge of social media for the annual tour and other Mission Terrace community events. She described the small neighborhood as a surprisingly active community.
“One little girl has even opened a lemonade stand at one of the houses in the tour,” Evensong said, explaining that the young Mission Terrace local wishes to donate some of her modest proceeds to the community to help fund further events.
The tour was started by longtime Mission Terrace resident Martha Arnaud, who was inspired by the annual garden walk in San Francisco’s Portola neighborhood.
“I made fliers and knocked om people’s doors,” Arnaud said, describing how she first began reaching out to her neighbors.
As many members of the neighborhood began new gardens fairly recently, Arnaud expects the number of gardens in the tour next year to grow.
Arnaud’s own entryway was open to the public and led tour goers through her kitchen to a brightly lit patio with stairs leading down to a cozy terraced garden. A miniature meditation labyrinth sits perfectly placed at the top of a mossy brick stairway and a swing lies tucked in the overgrown vegetation.
Arnaud hopes to see the tour continue to gain momentum long into the future.
Among those who hosted their gardens for the first time this year, was Audrey Tatsuno. Tatsuno’s backyard garden is lined with colored blown glass spheres and flowers, using some plants from the previous residents garden, explained Tatsuno. It also featured a trough style water fountain filled with goldfish that sat neatly in the shad of the sprawling trees surrounding the yard.
Tatsuno explained that her garden space was mainly used by her husband, but as visitors flooded her backyard she relished in the conversations starting in her space. By 2 pm. Her yard was bustling with activity as more people joined the tour.
Another interesting home, hosted by Scott Cataffa, leads through an art studio to a dense Spanish-inspired garden, overlooking the Outer Mission’s rolling hills. Cataffa, a landscape architect, described every plant in the garden with detail revealing diverse assortment of unique plant species varying from San Pedro cactus to a unique lemon tree sourced from Africa. “The planting is a handpicked collection of exotic species from comparable climates around the world,” said Cataffa.
Among those walking the garden tour were friends Julia Jung-Amesand Mimi Lo, who came to support their friend and fitness instructor who joined the garden tour for the first time this year.
For more information, email tour organizers at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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