Lesa and Ted Warren have been passionate gardeners for many years, especially on the vegetable side. Two years ago, after they became “empty nesters”, a search began to look for an older home in which to lay new roots. After some time, a home was discovered on College Street in the Historic Fairfield District.
This area of town is where some of the oldest and most beautiful houses in our city are located. In the summer of 2011, Lesa and Ted moved into their new/old house of 107 years on College Street just off of Fairfield to embark on a new segment of their lives. The house was already blessed with a mature and most beautiful perennial flower garden.
Fall of 2011 brought another interesting twist in this saga. A trip to Little Rock, AR was in store to attend the Fall Festival at P. Allen Smithʼs Moss Mountain Farm.
In early 2012, the Warrenʼs participated in the LSU Master Gardener program at the Randle Moore Center. This class is lead by Denyse Cummins and involves some of the most specialized LSU teachers in the state.
One day at lunch, Ted decided to pursue a dream that had been
pulling at his soul. Earlier he had obtained a parcel of land on the corner of Olive and Southern for the purpose of building a shop. However, when a preliminary soil test was run, the results were rather startling. The ground was well balanced with no contaminants, a perfect location for that future vegetable garden.
So a phone call to Little Rock was in order and over the course of several months P. Allen Smith was engaged to design a Community Garden for this neighborhood.
You see, the idea and plan are the single most important part of a project such as this to endure the test of time. The function of this garden is still evolving and the journey has just begun!
As far as the origination of Dittleʼs Garden, Tedʼs grandfather, Frank “Papa” Hughes coined the name a long time ago. After much deliberation it was decided to place this handle on both the logo and garden. Thus the name Dittleʼs Fairfield Community Garden was born. Papa Hughes would be most amused and proud of his verbage.
Come visit us and learn more about this venture! Come and spend the morning with P. Allen Smith, Mary Talbot, Dittle, Lesa and all the garden gang on March 9 at the Louisiana State Exhibit Museum, to celebrate agriculture and healthy lifestyle in Louisiana and to promote and learn how you can be a part of Dittleʼs Fairfield Community Garden and the great Fairfield Historic District of Shreveport. Click here for details.
Dr. Ted & Lesa Warren