Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Garden Burns

I am deeply saddened, but very hopeful, that the place that inspired me into the Gardening world has burned down over the weekend. The Van Allens are one of the sweetest people, in fact, one of the first people who we met when we moved out to Pomona from Glendale several years ago. They had a beautiful historic craftsman on a HUGE lot on Garey and ran a gardening center/shop from their home.

We were one of those 'strangers' who frequented their home with our kids and they took us in like family while we looked at gardening curiousities and picked up some native plants for our gardens. While we didn't go on a regular basis, we will always remember their love for gardening and just being wonderful people to all.

Here's an excerpt from a Pomona Now:

"We'll be camping out for a while but then we'll just put one foot in front of the other," Dawn Van Allen said Monday. "We should be up and running by next week."

The Van Allens lost their home which has also been the site of their garden center business in a fire that started in a shed in the area of Kingsley Avenue and Gordon Street shortly after 5 p.m. Saturday.

The fire destroyed two homes, did heavy damage to two others and cause moderate damage to eight others including one unit at an apartment complex.

Inspector Fred Stowers of the Los Angeles County Fire Department said Monday the fire, which did about $2.5 million in damage to the turn-of-the-century house, is still under investigation.

Investigators have ruled out the fire was started by illegal fireworks or a methamphetamine lab, Stowers said, adding the blaze began in a utility shed behind an apartment complex on Gordon Street.

I wish their recovery fast and hopefully as smooth as possible. I know their love for these kind of homes, heck, I recall them having another craftsman hauled to the lot next door for their friends. Good luck to both of you!

How to help

Pomona First Baptist Church is collecting donations to benefit those most affected by a fire that destroyed two homes in Pomona.

Checks can be made out to First Baptist Church with word "fire" written on the check and mailed or dropped of at the church offices at 586 N. Main St. Pomona 91768.

Donors can also go to www.pfblive.tv and go to on-line giving and make a donation marking it with the word "fire."



  1. There will also be a work party all day tomorrow from 8 am to 7 pm witha two hour break probably from 1-3

  2. There will also be a work party at the Henry's home (next door to the Garden) on Saturday for those who can't make weekday work parties but still want to help.