The vegetable and flower garden at the corner of Oak and 6th Streets is a big part of what makes downtown Hood River so appealing to visitors and residents.
C. J. Wertgen owns Oak Street Apartments at that corner. Around the perimeter of the building she created a garden filled with roses and peppers, lilies and artichokes, nasturtiums and carrots, squash and mums, sage and lemon mint and more. Steve Frazier, who has one of the apartments, helps garden and is part of the reason the roses are so successful.
C. J.’s daughter Lori Martinez nominated her garden for our Nature Space award. We liked the garden and the fact that unlike other businesses C. J. even planted the area under the grating beside the street. It’s those extra things that make a place stand out. She wins one of Envirogorge’s $25 awards for places where people are creating places for nature.
This urban garden is open to all who drive or walk along the town’s main street. “I like the green,” C. J. says. “I like to see things grow. It’s my pleasure to share it.”