Marie Hollis - Longtime Resident | KCET
Marie Hollis - Longtime Resident
Marie Hollis moved from Oklahoma to Southern California in 1967 and settled on a one acre lot in Richland Farms that had once housed 10,000 chickens, six barns and a slaughterhouse. The neighborhood back then, Hollis recalls, was mainly white, but an influx of African-Americans that like her, had migrated from the South changed the racial composition of the area. Now the neighborhood has a different face, mainly evident in the proud faces of Latino "ranchers" who are boarding horses and the like. Despite the drastic demographic changes of the area, Hollis has never felt any racial prejudice, but rather a strong sense of unity among the neighborhood. She refers to the small, but common road called Center Street adjacent to her property, as a measure for how the farms have changed. Once eerily quiet, it is now a main road with cars or large trucks blasting Banda or Hip Hop as their engines rattle past, reflecting the racial mash-up of the area.
Farming in the 60's
"The impressive part of the area was the size of the lots; very different from the regular tract homes you found in the area."
Problems Facing the Farms
"Balancing the urban and rural aspects of the area."
"Horses are common scenes in Richland Farms."
"People who live in this area can and should be attracted to gardening."
The salad grown at Sierra Madre Middle School uses an indoor aeroponics system. This system uses 90% less water than conventional gardening methods and produces 30% more food. A single harvest can be ready in three weeks and a basic system costs $500.