Kinship Garden awarded

Submitted by Jennifer Harris, and the Design Futurist Pacific Horticulture

The Kinship Garden on Market Street near the Joyce L. Sobel Family Resource Center was given an Honors Award by the Design Futurist Pacific Horticulture.

The less than 500 square-foot garden was designed by Jennifer Harris of Catkin Horticultural Arts.

With a budget under $50,000, the theme of the Kinship Garden is “Growing for Biodiversity, Drought and Fire Resilience, Nature is Good for You, Sustainable Gardening, and Garden Futurist “

The garden is described on the Design Futurist Pacific Horticulture’s website as being located on “remote San Juan Island, exposed to sun, wind and sea, this garden supports the community of Friday Harbor. Since colonization, the land had seen hard use as a farm and now lies in the heart of a resource center that includes offices, retail, the food bank, social services, and senior housing. Rainfall is approximately 28 inches per year.”

“The Kinship Garden was imagined as an oasis within a relative biodiversity desert for native pollinators and birds,” Harris said—designed to thrive without irrigation and to use as little plastic and off-island inputs as possible. Using a budget of $10,000, volunteers replaced a lawn and shrubs with over 2,000 native forbs, shrubs and bulbs. “Our use of sand and gravel for planting and mulching,” added Harris, “has yielded enormous populations of ground-nesting wasps and bees—insects rarely seen due to the loss of habitat and food sources.”

Why They Loved It

Judges were blown away by the results achieved on a tight budget in a remote location. “Extraordinary.” “I just was really moved by this one.” “They were very creative, doing a lot with little.”

“We are very honored to be included in the company of the other award winners,” Harris said.