Ariadne (pronounced airy AD nee) Garden, a double lot located in the heart of NE Portland, holds some of the healthiest soil to be found in the city. With practices dedicated to caring for the soil food web – that vast array of communities that keep our soil alive and working wonders – we pursue the greater purposes of caring for the land and our quality of life. Our goals:
To care for her through generations with beauty – In 1993, founder Kim McDodge purchased the land with a $10,000 inheritance and established Ariadne as a formalized garden. To ensure it as a site of perennial regeneration into the future, Kim deeded the land to the Oregon Sustainable Agriculture Land Trust (OSALT) in 1995, becoming the first property under OSALT’s protection.
To care for her soil, tools, seeds, and money – Ariadne is a self-sustaining retailer, selling its own flowers (peonies, roses, yarrow, lilies, gladiola, zinnias) and produce (tomatoes and starts, lettuces, escaroles, mustards, kales, beans, squash, raspberries, etc.) to those who visit its onsite produce stand. Ariadne’s commitment to healthy soils yields some of the most delicious and healthiest food available in the city.
To keep her so well that we can offer out our skills with pride – Ariadne Garden is run by volunteers. We are a group of people who’ve each found our own way to the garden – from the neighborhood and the city at large. Each of us contributes our own particular skills and passions. It’s a site of research, teaching, sharing, and discussion. Anyone is welcome to volunteer here, it’s just a matter of showing up. We learn, build community, and eat well.
Our future: to keep her water and mineral cycles flowing – Kim McDodge passed away on April 5th, 2011, entrusting the garden and its mission onto the active community of volunteers she cultivated throughout the years. Utilizing a holistic decision making framework, the Ariadne community continues to honor and build upon Kim’s legacy. We continue to uphold a firm commitment to progressive soil building practices, education, research, and community building.
Read site donor Kim McDodge’s recollections of Ariadne Garden in collaboration with Kay Reid, oral historian: The Growing of Ariadne Garden