UPDATE: Another fire at Longfellow Creek P-Patch shed, and how to help the gardeners

11:28 AM: SPD and SFD are investigating after another fire at the Longfellow Creek P-Patch shed at SW Thistle/25th SW. We were passing by when we saw Engine 11’s crew, and the smoke, around 10:20 am, and pulled over to see what was happening. Firefighters were extinguishing what had been major flames. This is the third fire at the shed in the past week; here’s our report from last Friday.

Even before this morning’s fire, we were planning to publish a followup today, after hearing from Christina, one of the P-Patch gardeners, who told us via email, “We lost a lot of tools and equipment in the fire and through repeated acts of vandalism and theft. We are hoping to replace that lost equipment and are looking for donations of shovels, rakes, pruners, a gas-powered lawn mower, hoses, or wheelbarrows.” She adds, “We are community gardeners and donate fresh produce regularly to the West Seattle Food Bank as well.” If you can help, donations are being coordinated by Kristin, at kadams2517@gmail.com. Meantime, we’ll be following up the the fire investigation.

ADDED WEDNESDAY NIGHT: We still haven’t heard back from SFD regarding the fire’s cause. Since the P-Patch, while managed and gardened by community volunteers, is on city land, we asked the city Department of Neighborhoods, which manages the P-Patch program, about the situation. Here’s the response from spokesperson Sam Read:

We are devastated to hear of another fire at the Longfellow Creek P-Patch. We share in the community’s grief and frustration and our P-Patch staff are working closely with the garden community and City partners.

The shed is not considered city owned, but rather managed and funded by community with occasional support and guidance from P-Patch staff. As such, the gardeners will need to come together to fund any rebuild or repairs.

P-Patch staff are coordinating with Seattle Parks and Recreation on developing a plan to remove garbage and cut trees from the area. In addition, P-Patch staff are coordinating with Seattle Police Department around these incidents. The Southwest Precinct’s Crime Prevention Coordinator has offered to work directly with our staff to organize a personal safety training for Long Fellow Creek Gardeners if there’s a collective interest.

ADDED THURSDAY MORNING: SFD tells WSB the fire”was ruled as ‘incendiary’ (intentionally set). Information was provided to the Seattle Police Department for follow-up. The shed was heavily damaged by fire, and partially collapsed.”

14 Replies to "UPDATE: Another fire at Longfellow Creek P-Patch shed, and how to help the gardeners"

  • U. Crane March 16, 2022 (11:32 am)

    This is why we can’t have nice things.

  • OneTimeCharley March 16, 2022 (11:53 am)

    When they catch this individual, I think restitution, plus a very healthy amount of volunteer time at the West Seattle Food Bank is in order. Perhaps then the individual (or individuals) will understand that their actions have literally taken the food off of someone’s table.

    • Anne March 16, 2022 (1:23 pm)

      Good luck that any of that will happen-especially that those responsible will have any kind of an “aha” moment. 

  • vanessa March 16, 2022 (11:56 am)

    The horrible kids that are doing this are literally taking food away from people in our community. How shameful came you be? You are awful and Karma or the police or both will catch up with you.

    • JerNJul March 16, 2022 (3:49 pm)

      Vanessa, this isn’t believed to be kids – based on several eyewitness reports, we believe this is being done by a man in his 40’s who repeatedly tore the shed apart and threw our tools in the stream the last couple months leading up to arson. 

      • Lavender March 17, 2022 (7:38 am)

        I wonder what this man needs, and what precipitated all this. The sad irony is, being a part of working at a community garden, might be good for him.

        Hope this destruction stops, that you may receive and rebuild what is needed, that this man can be helped, and gardens will grow beautifully and provide!

    • Amy March 16, 2022 (6:34 pm)

      Why do you assume it’s kids? 

  • Cranky March 16, 2022 (1:14 pm)

    I think jail is too nice for any of these cretins. Public stocks actually sounds like a great idea. Yeah, I know… won’t fly but I can dream in my mind’s eye

  • I. Ponder March 16, 2022 (1:51 pm)

    I hesitate to donate equipment until the arsonist is apprehended lest it also get incinerated.

    • Christina March 16, 2022 (2:38 pm)

      We have an off-site storage area for our tools, so we won’t be keeping equipment at the P-patch until we have a safe place to store them. Thank you for all the community support!

  • Jeepney March 16, 2022 (2:34 pm)

    This appears to be the work of a serial arsonist, and if not caught will most likely escalate their targets.

  • SC March 16, 2022 (7:26 pm)

    Our nephew made the sign which was part of his Eagle Scout project for this shed. This is really disappointing. 

    • JerNJul March 18, 2022 (12:49 pm)

      Just saw this, sorry for responding so late – please let your nephew know how much we appreciated and loved his sign over the years. I was told it was his Eagle Scout project? If so it speaks of his high character. Good man. 

  • Mj March 16, 2022 (10:07 pm)

    Cranky – Agreed whatever happened to the chain gangs?  

Sorry, comment time is over.