Get to Know a Gardener: Heather Oblon
I talked to Heather Oblon on the phone a couple of times before I finally ventured down to Hermosa Beach to meet her in person. It’s funny to talk with somebody on the phone and get an image in your head. Then you meet and you finally get a chance to see if the image matches up. But she was much more maternal than I had originally thought, because as it turns out she’s not just a mom she’s a grandmother, which was shocking because she looks like a kid.
It was a lot of fun getting to know her and finding out about her background. She actually has an IT background and then went into managing rock bands which I thought was so cool. She traveled the globe for almost 15 years as a manager of these punk rockers which must have been quite an experience.
Now she puts her garden expertise to good use as the current manager at Hermosa Beach Community Gardens. And she’s taking a real active role in creating the newly official garden; with its boxes that are currently being built with organic materials and too very drought friendly watering systems that she has helped to organize!
One of the things that struck me most about her is her love to help people. As she decided to leave all the hustle and bustle of managerial roles behind and now has her own nonprofit organization that she founded called Immortal You Foundation. It reaches out to the community to give back. This is a big mission in her life these day, not only through her nonprofit organization (which helps homeless people and environmental issues as well as young folks getting scholarships they otherwise wouldn’t have) but too she has her hands full with managing the Hermosa Beach Garden.
One of the other things that struck me was the importance of growing fresh garden vegetables and teaching to the children how valuable it is to cook what you grow- like pasta with pesto and other kinds of sauces that you can make from your garden. She was very educated on how to address things organically, for instance how to not use pesticides and opt for organic choices. A California girl, born-and-bred in Southern California, she certainly knows a lot about the area. And as if all that she does isn’t enough to give back she’s also a current guide at the South Coast Botanical Gardens! Its not surprising that at the Hermoa Beach Community Garden ribbon cutting ceremony she was presented with an official letter of recognition.
Congratulations Heather! You Grow girl!
Article by Sharlene Sullivan