I am in the process of trying to get rid of my yard at the new old house. Yesterday, Privileged Henchmen and I rolled out in the VillainMobile (an 11 year-old white Ford Focus Hatchback) to go my favorite nursery ever–Mordigan’s–and after driving to the west side of LA, where entitlement and terrible driving reigns, we found, instead of pretty, lovely native California plants, a bulldozed lot.
I missed the outrage.
Apparently while I was living in the VillainCave (a loft in downtown LA, where no garden would be had), the developers that owned the Grove (not a Grove–a shopping mall) bought up the property that Mordigans had been on for over 70 years and made the nursery move to a much smaller part of the property, and then the developers decided to go with a new commercial development and not renew the lease.
Certainly the way the market works and all that, yada.
But damn it. It was a wonderful, family-owned nursery and in its a place will be another yuppy playspace on the west side of LA. They are going to put in a “pub.” Yeeesh. There’s something you can’t find everywhere. I get it; I really do: the denizens of the Melrose sure as hell aren’t keeping their own yards, and they eat out six days a week. So, of course, most profitable use is more intense development.
But, again, damn it.
To find a new nursery, I wanted to find something relatively near home. Know what? Nada, so far. There’s an Orchard Supply Hardware, otherwise, I’m not finding a ruddy thing.
Technically, I live a block just north of the 10 freeway. The 10 is, or should be, by now infamous as the dividing line in Los Angeles, and the paucity of high quality grocery stores south of the 10. My colleagues, David Sloane and LaVonna Lewis, have examined this problem. I have a grocery store really close, but the gulf made by the 10 really can not be discounted. It really is a gash in the region.
Why I was expecting there to be nurseries when there are few groceries, I’m not sure.
It’s kind of ironic that somebody at the Center for Neighborhood Technology once got furious with me for suggesting I pay some interview respondents with Target or Wallmart cards. “We don’t want to support ‘category killer’ stores.” He huffed at me.
Yeah, well, without a doubt, large, big-box commercial gardening centers dealt blows on Mordigans. But the coup de grace came from yet another mixed use developer schilling developments branded as urban.
Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.