Family owned and operated since 1972, City Farmers Nursery specializes in gardening products, American-made items for the home and yard, and free advice. In San Diego, it is the largest organically maintained nursery.
But it’s really far more than just a nursery. In addition to the carefree (and seemingly immobile) cat that can be found lazing about on the register counter, the nursery hosts a farm animal menagerie, including a pony, goats, turkeys, chickens, ducks, turtles, fish, a puppy and a parrot. There’s also a play area for children, and a bonsai and bamboo sitting area for those needing a peaceful moment out of the inner-city sun.
City Farmers Nursery is located at the corner of Home and Euclid avenues, and is a colorful staple and hub of activity — the treasure of its neighborhood. The property was originally purchased in the ’60s by Nate Tall, and has continued to expand ever since, seeing the addition of its family home and a restaurant. Though Tall died before the official opening of Nate’s Garden Grill, the small, eclectic diner is enjoyed by old and new patrons alike, serving great food and providing live performances by local musicians.
Bill Tall, Nate’s son, is now the owner and full-time operator of the nursery. He is unparalleled when it comes to information about gardening, and he isn’t stingy when it comes to sharing. Say, for example, you needed to know how much chicken excrement is necessary to fertilize a 4- by 6-foot garden plot, Bill Tall is your man. (For the record, that was not a hypothetical; it’s literally the last conversation overheard at the nursery.) He’s also impossible to miss, with his signature salt-and-pepper beard and yellow measuring tape suspenders.
Bill’s three kids were raised on the property and also know a thing or two (or three or …) when it comes to gardening. Sam is taking after his father at the nursery, and his daughters, Rebecca and Sara, can be found on the property helping out from time to time.
4832 Home Avenue
San Diego, CA 92105
Editor’s note: Welcome to our newest column, Progressive San Diego! We received an email from Dave, a reader in Liverpool, UK, who’s visiting San Diego later this year. He had one simple question: What are some progressive places to visit?
That got us thinking. There’s nothing really available online that’s broad and comprehensive with regard to San Diego’s progressive history and locales — a directory of sorts. We want to change that.
And so each month we will feature a person, place or thing that has done something to contribute to our important cause and culture. Given our time and resource restraints, each feature will be short and sweet, or pulled from other sites with permission. Please feel free to add information in the comments. We would love this to be organic and ever evolving.
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