Did you know you can make a gift of stock to support the garden and nutrition programs at Olivewood?  

Email or call us to talk about the possibilities:
contactContact Us

Executive Director
Healy Vigderson

Gardens and Facilities Manager
Leonard Vargas

Nutrition Program Coordinator
Cherianne Barry

Coordinator of Volunteers and Outreach
Cristina Juarez
Development Coordinator
Claire Groebner
Garden Educator
Ananda Gunasekara

Schools Coordinator
Corrie Madueño

Garden Support Staff
Michael Ramirez
Reyna Rodriguez
Adan Teposte

Olivewood Gardens and Learning Center was created by the 
International Community Foundation  to further its mission of ensuring healthy communities and healthy economies in the cross-border region.
Follow the Seasons with Fresh Veggies!
Olivewood Gardens is now a pick-up location for Dickinson Farms  Farm Share Bags !  The bag ($28) includes a weekly selection of locally grown, heirloom fruits and vegetables.  Dickinson Farms donates $4 for every purchase to the Olivewood Gardens program fund.  To learn more or enroll, go to their website or contact Cherianne Barry.
Board of Directors

Chair:  Sam Dychter, M.D.
Vice  Chair: Trish Watlington
Treasurer:  Jacqueline Reynoso
Secretary: C athe Burnham
James Clark
Dennis Doyle, Ph.D.
Anne McEnany
Susana Villegas
Evelyn Wiggins
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soireeSeedling Soirée
Saturday, May 20, 2017

Join us for a special evening of  friends, beauty, nature, food and spirits featuring some  of San Diego's finest chefs, vintners, brewers, and distillers.  Celebrate community  health with us in our beautiful spring garden.

Cocktails & Appetizers: 5PM - 7PM, $50
Chef's Culinary Feast: 7PM - 9PM, $200

We are thrilled Olivewood Gardens has been awarded a grant from The San Diego Foundation to expand our Cooking for Salud program to reach the aging Filipino population. We are grateful to The San Diego Foundation and the Del Mar Healthcare Fund at The San Diego Foundation for electing to support our work in National City through the Age Friendly Communities Program.

We can't wait to start this new program and begin providing essential nutrition education, healthy cooking, and leadership development training to older adults in our community.

We are also excited to announce a generous grant from the Alliance Healthcare Foundation!  Olivewood has been selected to receive the 2017 Mission Support Grant.  Funds will be used to fortify the evaluation of our programs to communicate our impact in the community.

job2Job Openings
Nutrition Educator and Garden Educator
We're expanding our team!  
We are seeking enthusiastic and positive team players who are passionate about building healthy families and a health environment. 

Nutrition Educator - part time
Garden Educator - part time

 If you or someone you know might be interested in any of these positions, please check out the complete job descriptions HERE.

uptoWhat We're Up To...March
  • We graduated our 9th generation of Kitchenistas.  Congratulations, ladies!  Thank you so much to our amazing volunteers, interns, Kitchenistas, and Guest Chefs Joe Pastry of Waters Fine Food & Catering, Marguerite Grifka, Matt Gordon of Urban Solace and Solace & the Moonlight Lounge, and Miguel Valdez of The Red Door and Bar by Red Door.  You provide the support, expertise, and energy that make this program so special and a success!
  • We hosted Pilates in the garden for our Kitchenistas.
  • Our Salsa & Salsa Cooking Class brought a group of energetic and fun folks to learn Cuban salsa dancing moves with awesome volunteer instructor Marco Aguiar and to learn how to prepare several different types of salsa with Tijuana Chef Diego Madueño.
  • We represented the San Diego Food Systems Alliance at their Whole Foods fundraiser, and helped raise over $15k for San Diego's food system.
  • Educators and parents attended our full day School Garden Training Academy sponsored by Kaiser Foundation Hospitals.
  • We hosted a plant giveaway for the Resource Conservation District.
  • We participated as a vendor at the National City Chamber of Commerce's Mariachi Festival and the Southwestern College Job and Internship Fair.
  • We had an Open House and Gardening class.
  • We worked with Sweetwater High School students, families, and staff to start creating a school garden on the school campus.
  • We screened "The Kitchenistas of National City" at the Logan Heights Public Library and had a Q&A for community members with the Kitchenistas and film director Mary Ann Beyster.
  • Students from Sweetwater High School came to the Gardens each week for the High School Urban Agriculture Internship.
  • Students from throughout the County came to the Gardens to participate in our Children's Field Trip Program, a total of 12 field trips.  We also had an open enrollment Spring Break Day Camp.
Upcoming Events and Programs
Cultivating Conversation: A Dine and Learn Series
Visit Olivewood Gardens for an intimate outdoor dinner, guided tour, and thought-provoking discussion.
Saturday, April 8th, 5PM - 8PM
Featured Speaker:
Sam the Cooking Guy
Featured Restaurant:
Tender Greens

Healthy Brunch Cooking Class
At this fun, hands-on cooking class, you will harvest produce from the garden, whip up a delicious healthy brunch feast, and take home fresh produce.
Sunday, April 9th, 11AM - 1:30PM

Olivewood School Garden
Happy Hour
Spend the evening with fellow educators and parents as we  understand the importance of school gardens,  learn how to build a school garden network, and  model strategies for garden-based nutrition education! 

This hands-on class is free Light refreshments and drinks will be provided.

Friday, April 21st, 3PM - 5PM
Register HERE, it's free! 

Mommy and Me
Come to Olivewood Gardens for a morning of  garden exploration! This interactive class is designed for children ages 2 to 5 years old with an accompanying adult. Activities include story time, a garden walk, and a tasting.

Thursday, April 27th, 10:30AM - 11:30AM

Contact  Corrie to register
Integrated Disease & Pest Control Gardening Class
Join our garden experts to learn about best practices for disease and pest management to keep your garden productive and healthy.

Saturday, April 29th, 9AM - 11AM

Open House and Produce Stand
Come take a tour of Olivewood Gardens.  Learn about our history, programs, and vision for a healthy community.  Bring home some freshly harvested produce from our "take what you need, leave what you can" donation based produce stand.

Saturday, April 29th, 10AM - 1PM
Tours at 10:15AM and 12PM
School Wellness Summit...
For school administrators, educators, and parents c oming in June.  Watch for more details.

Sponsored by Kaiser Foundation Hospitals
Healthy Cooking Demonstrations with the Olivewood Kitchenistas
The Kitchenistas will share easy, healthy cooking tips for busy parents.  Learn how to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into your daily meals.

Every Thursday in April, 3PM - 4:30PM at the National City Library
Looking for a fun way to help our community become healthier?  Why not volunteer with Olivewood Gardens?  We have a role for you! 

Upcoming weekend opportunities include the Seedling  Soirée and Day of Play
SDG&E Tips
Save money with SDG&E's CARE program

Balance your monthly energy bills with the Level Pay Plan

Check out SDG&E's new EcoChoice Program and take advantage of solar energy!

Drive an all-electric or plug-in hybrid vehicle?  You might qualify for savings!

Go paperless with SDG&E's My Account 
communityIn the Community...
growingGrowing in the Garden...
It is springtime in the Garden!  With lots of flowers and lush greenery, it is pretty spectacular.  We are growing peas, beets, carrots, strawberries, chard, and other spring veggies.  Our stone fruit trees are also starting to bloom, so we are looking forward to some delicious peaches and plums in the summer!  Come out and see it for yourself!

recipe Featured Recipe
Kale Salad with Jalapeño Vinaigrette
Created by Chef Miguel Valdez


¼ cup lime juice
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
½ cup cilantro leaves, packed
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly cracked black pepper

2 small carrots, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 bunch of kale, thick stems removed, thinly sliced
1 cup roasted corn
½ cup quinoa
10 small cooked beets
½ cup pumpkin seeds

Jalapeño  Fun Facts
We love jalapeños at Olivewood Gardens!  These little peppers pack a  bit of a punch (you can remove the seeds to make them less spicy).  They are considered "medium" on the Scoville scale that measures heat in peppers as a result of the amount of capsaicin they have.  Capsaicin has  anti-inflammatory properties and is a vasodilator.  It also may  be effective in cancer prevention and weight loss.  J alapeños also have high amounts of Vitamin A and the antioxidant Vitamin C.  Eat up!

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