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Bus Fare Blues

Exploring the hidden corners of Seattle

Monthly Archives: October 2011

Danny Woo Community Garden, SeattleI’m a huge fan of community gardens and one of the first things we did when we arrived in Seattle was to visit the Danny Woo Community Garden, a terraced green oasis hidden between a high-rise apartment complex and the freeway. Kobe, Japan (a sister-city to Seattle) contributed to the planning of this asian-themed garden, which is divided into small parcels for local asian residents to grow bok choy, bitter melon, and other produce not commonly found on supermarket shelves.

The entry to the garden is flanked by stone lanterns and Japanese wooden arches. We wandered through walking trails flanked by bamboo and Japanese maple before arriving at the garden — a delightfully ramshackle assortment of small terraced plots. An elderly asian man bent over a row of cilantro and green onions, watching us while we ambled from plot to plot like museum patrons. This is definitely more of a working garden than a tourist attraction – the walkways were narrow and frequently overgrown; you could tell some gardeners were more dedicated than others. We passed one plot completely taken over by some exotic variety of heirloom tomato staked to an elaborate system of bamboo trellis, next to another plot completely taken over by chamomile.

Danny Woo Garden plotsFrom our hilltop vantage point, we watched Chinatown spring to life as the morning progressed. A tiny Korean lady shuffled down the street on her morning walk and the Dim Sum shops opened their doors. The smell of fried duck drifted our way from the barbecue place down the street. I could hear the freeway traffic picking up as rush-hour commuters began to arrive. A cool gust from Puget Sound set the prayer flags fluttering, casting off trailing threads of red, green, and yellow.

We were getting hungry, so we made our way to the end of the garden, a long stepped path that zigzagged between overgrown fig trees before passing under a decaying wooden arch to deposit us on Main Street in front of the Panama Hotel.

Location: 221 6th Avenue South, Seattle, Washington


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Yakima Fruit Market

Cinderella Pumpkins, Bothell Fruit Market

I was visiting a friend in Bothell yesterday and noticed a fruit market on the side of the road. I had to stop and take a look. The produce was incredibly fresh and a little on the pricey side, although I was able to scout a few deals. The Fuji apples were only $.99/lb and were deliciously sweet and slightly tart – quite possibly the best apples I’ve ever tasted, and HUGE! Easily three times the size of some of the apples you buy at the grocery store. We’ve scouted various roadside stands around the state and even braved the tourist trap barns on I-90, and we’ve never had apples like this. The Honeycrisp get rave reviews and fetch a higher price, but in my humble opinion Fuji is best.

Produce, eggs, local dairy products, honey, herbs, and mushrooms — all local too. Why can’t every town have a market like this?

The fruit stand has been in operation since 1938 and is open from April to October.

Location: 17321 Bothell Way NE, Bothell, WA 98011

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