Thank you to our Day of Play partners, volunteers, and attendees.  This year we had over 400 children and their families join us for a fun day of healthy cooking, garden adventures, and physical activities.


A mother and son harvest vegetables together during a field trip from the San Ysidro Health Center's Salsita program.
Unwind at the End
of the Day!

Join us on Thursday evenings at 5pm for stretching and relaxation in our tranquil garden setting. Our beginner-friendly yoga class includes traditional yoga poses and simple meditation techniques.

Classes are presented by volunteers, thanks to a partnership with the Deep Yoga School of Healing Arts Teacher Training at Ginseng Yoga. 

$5 suggested donation. Please bring your own yoga mat or beach towel and dress appropriately for outdoor yoga.


Moon beans flowering in the Gardens.
Cool Off with Fresh Veggies!
Olivewood Gardens offers  Farmers' Market Boxes from Specialty Produce!  The box ($20) includes a weekly selection of fresh California-grown fruits and vegetables.
Specialty Produce donates $2 of every purchase to the Olivewood Gardens program fund. To learn more or enroll,  contact Claire Groebner.
Specialty Produce 
Farmers' Market Box contents

Volunteers Mallory and Pam serving recipe tastings at the Day of Play.
Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center
Executive Director

Healy Vigderson 


Program Director

Diana Bergman


Head Gardener

Martha Prusinskas


Development Assistant

Claire Groebner 


Garden Educator

Charles Anacker


Garden Support Staff

Ananda Gunasekara

Adan Teposte


(619) 434-4281
2525 N Avenue
National City, CA 91950

Board of Directors
  • ChairMary L. Walshok, Ph.D
  • Vice Chair: Sam Dychter, M.D.
  • TreasurerRichard L. Romney
  • SecretaryJacqueline Reynoso
  • Cathe Burnham
  • James Clark
  • Dennis Doyle, Ph.D.
  • Irma Gigli, M.D.
  • Anne McEnany
  • Eleanor Navarra
  • Trish Watlington

Like us on Facebook   Follow us on Twitter   View our photos on flickr



Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center  was created by the
to further its vision of assuring healthy communities and healthy economies in the 
cross-border region.

Goodbye amazing Olivewood staff!

Thank you Ally, Kati, and Martha for your years of amazin g service to Olivewood  Gardens and Learning Center.

Head Gardener Martha Prusinskas has lovingly cultivated the gardens for more than 20 years. Photo credit: Galdino Sanchez

We are sad to say goodbye to three of our wonderful staff members, women that have given their passion, commitment, spirit, and expertise to Olivewood and the community.  These women have built and cultivated our programs and have left behind an amazing legacy.  We will miss you but we are excited about your new adventures!

Thank you Kati and Ally!  Kati nurtured and expanded our Kitchen Education programs and Ally developed and grew our Volunteer and Intern program.
DoP2015 Day of Play

Families from throughout San Diego County joined us on June 27th to celebrate healthy living and environmental stewardship.  Attendees made quesadillas led by the Olivewood Kitchenistas, learned how to pickle vegetables, tasted   barley salad with apple cider vinaigrette and tried other healthy snacks.  Our partners led families in activities ranging from seed planting to decorating large butterflies to be installed throughout National City. 
  SSDopVol Volunteer with Olivewood

Kitchenista Maria Torres teaches how to make masa for tortillas.

Looking for an opportunity to get involved in the community?  Join the Olivewood team as a volunteer!  We have opportunities for everyone, from working with children to helping out in the office.  

In addition to our ongoing opportunities, we are currently looking to fill the following intern positions:

Learn more about volunteering HERE
What We're Up To
July and August

  • We hosted Girl Scouts "Dig It" Camp, the San Ysidro Health Center, and Horizon Youth Program
  • Volunteers and supporters helped us to send off Martha, Kati, and Ally.
  • We hosted Deep Yoga Outdoor Bliss Classes and a Volunteer Orientation.
  • Olivewood hosted an Open House for the community.
Girl Scouts participating in a planting activity, wearing hand-made flower crowns.

  • We will begin our 6th session of Cooking for Salud!, inspiring another generation of Kitchenistas to make healthy changes in their families and communities.  Graduated Kitchenistas and guest chefs will join us to make this an educational and empowering experience.
  • We will participate as an exhibitor at National City's Automobile Heritage Day and the first ever Health & Wellness 5k, hosted by former Miss National City, Aida Castañeda.
  • Olivewood will host Deep Yoga Outdoor Bliss and an Volunteer Orientation.
  • Olivewood will host an Open House on August 22nd.


Now Hiring:
Nutrition Program Coordinator
Volunteer and Outreach Coordinator

Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center is looking for two enthusiastic and positive team players passionate about gardening and education to join our team in National City, CA.


Sunday, August 16, 3pm - 6pm
Olivewood Gardens Benefit Concert, Gourmet Tasting and Art Show in Encinitas
featuring Guitarist Jimmy Patton, Chef Brandon Brooks, Artist Donna Butnik and  a Special Duet Performance by Ella

Join us at the Triton Garden Gallery in Encinitas for an evening of delicious food, beautiful artwork, and moving music all in support of Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center!

Open House
Saturday, August 22, 10am-1pm

Learn about our historic roots, current gardening practices, and plans to impact the future of National City. Tours include garden areas and a peek inside the Noyes house.


Guided Tours: 10:15am and 12:15pm
Location: Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center
2525 N Ave, National City, CA 91950
Suggested Donation: $5
Contact: 619-434-4281
Summer Energy Savings Tips
From Olivewood supporter SDG&E
  • Visit a Cool Zone to beat summer heat.  There are more than 115 locations throughout San Diego County where you can cool off.
  • Conserve water.  Check out the
  • mandatory water restrictions  to find the most up-to-date requirements.                                  
  • Change out old appliances.  A new washing machine can use up to 65% less water and 55% less electricity.  You can even get an appliance rebate for replacing your old machine.
  • Reduce your energy usage.  Here are some tips to try at home.
Thank you to our Sponsors!

As we close out our fiscal year, we would like to take a moment to acknowledge all of our wonderful sponsors.  With your generous support, we continue to further the impact of our programs to create a healthy, empowered community.

And of course, thank you to all of the amazing individuals (like YOU) that make our programs grow!

Featured Recipe:
Red Quinoa Summer Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette
Created by Chef Margarita Grandy


Ingredients for Salad
1¾ cups water
1 cup quinoa
1 cucumber, peeled and cut into ¼-inch cubes 
4 radishes, thinly sliced
½ small red onion, small dice
1 large tomato, cored, seeded, and diced
1 small summer squash, diced and roasted
4-5 leaves of dinosaur kale, de-stemmed and thinly sliced
olive oil for roasting


Directions for Salad
1. Turn on oven to 400˚. Dice summer squash and add to pan with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast in oven until tender and slightly golden brown.
2. Bring the water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the quinoa, stir once, and return to a boil. Cook uncovered, over medium heat for 12 minutes or until all liquid has been absorbed. Strain and rinse well with cold water, shaking the sieve well to remove all moisture.When dry, transfer the quinoa to a large bowl. (A rice cooker would also work!)
3. Add the
cucumbers, onion, tomato, radishes, and kale to the bowl of quinoa. Add the vinaigrette, season with salt and pepper, and toss well.


Ingredients and Directions for Lemon Vinaigrette
1 small bunch fresh herbs, chopped
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 lemon, juiced
1½ teaspoons salt
¾ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons of honey
Whisk lemon juice, honey, herbs, salt and pepper. Slowly add olive oil until emulsified.