Jefferson Park Food Forest

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Jefferson Park Food Forest (JPFF) is a newly proposed local permaculture food forest project taken on by students of a local Permaculture Design Certification Course taught by Jenny Pell and Marisha Auerbach. The proposed site is on an undeveloped hillside on the Western side of Jefferson Park, located in the Beacon Hill neighborhood in Seattle.

The project's name, goals and mission statement are in development.

In addition to editing this page, the group posts ideas and comments on the project's discussion page.

Mission statementEdit

To rejuvenate the land and gather community through collaboration, education, and participation. This project will address vital issues of water, food, land use, and community- building with interactive elements which will enable people to learn how to feed themselves, care for the land and the natural elements, and create a place to gather and nurture community. By its success, it will be a model for other community food forest projects.


Jefferson Park, located in the Beacon Hill neighborhood in Seattle has recently seen significant changes as part of the federally-mandated Beacon Reservoir lid project (one reservoir removed, the other lidded for more open park space) [1] and $8 million in Pro Parks Levy projects allowing for significant redevelopment and remodeling. Projects in this park revitalization effort include new walking paths, gardens, and a new gymnasium. For more information see the Seattle Parks & Rec Jefferson Park Site Planning page.

The proposed JPFF project site is currently well outside of the area of heaviest development for the park. It is located on an undeveloped hillside to the East of 15th AVE South, to the North of South Dakota street, West and down the hill from the Beacon Hill Reservoir. (Google street map + satellite view. See other maps at bottom of page as well as the Parks Dept project sites for land use planning maps.)

Site is sparse in terms of structures, paths, and plant communities. There are hydrology, geology, vectors, bus lines, airplane noise, car traffic on 15th Ave S. Nearby and above are being-developed soccer fields. The slope and traffic patterns of the neighborhood do not funnel foot traffic to the site. There is a view to the NW of Downtown Seattle.

Site is currently maintained by Seattle Parks & Recreation? Most of hill is turf, with no known yields or benefits aside from some erosion control. Seattle Park's Jefferson Park Nursery located to South. Apparently there are some height restrictions on any trees installed in the area for view purposes from the East.

The stepped grade increases coming up from 15th Ave S, then increases again at 16th Ave South (closed-off Seattle City Light access rode) and then dramatically increases (as in climb on all fours) above another access rode just below the plateau to the East. Site would probably lend itself well to terracing.



Multi-cultural and a bit of mixed classes: working class and a growing college-educated working class/professional class with an artsy orientation interested in neighborhood projects. Ethnic - Asian first and second generation families; multigenerational households. Latino first and second generation. White - working class, skilled trades, and middle class professionals. The park also draws people from communities a bit further away from the nearby neighborhood. For example the cricket fields that Saturday hosted over over 100 people associated with the Samoan Cricket League, for matches.[2] The lawn bowling field and the golf course also draw people.

Group projectEdit

Group came together in late April 2009 at the Permaculture Design Course at Raw Vegan Source (Raw Vegan Source event link) (Permaculture Forum link) taught by Jenny Pell (of Permaculture Now!), Marisha Auerbach (also of Permaculture Now!, Wild Thyme Farm and Herb'n Wisdom), and guest instructors Christy Nieto, Kelda Miller (Divine Earth Gardening Project) and Tom Armstrong (Raw Vegan Source).

Members of the Jefferson Park Food Forest project (not a final name) include

  • G (Group rep?, Jefferson Park neighbor and community organizer)
  • H (Community organizer)
  • N
  • J (Gardener) and
  • Daniel Johnson (Community organizer, artist).

Project focus areasEdit


Primary focus: Community Building, Water Catchment. Water in general? Also citizen group interviews.


Primary focus: Educational aspects + Interactive elements


Primary focus: Food forests + guilds

Daniel JohnsonEdit

Composting toilet + aesthetics Also: 3D modeling, Keynote (software like PowerPoint) templates and presentation, nursery, green bed & breakfast, reflexology path, quiet contemplation and sunbathing area


Community GardenEdit

  • Permaculture education and Demonstration
  • Children's nest area
  • Sound blocking

Community Gathering SpaceEdit

  • Celebrations and work parties
  • Green roof water collection
  • Composting Toilets
  • Tool storage

Orchard food forestEdit

  • Berries to Fruit trees to Conifers

Interactive componentsEdit

  • Zip line (DLJ) bucket hauler
  • Bike powered watering system


  • leave a few gentile slopes open for say a sledding run

Next meetingsEdit

  • 24 July 2009
  • Class meeting at RVS on Sat, Sun June 2009
  • Possibly Weekend of Friday, 22-24 May

External linksEdit


Site planningEdit

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