The project

Referring to the unofficial twinnings that reflect Berlin’s current immigrant population instead of the official equivalents of the city, the project explores the city’s long tradition of urban horticulture and reveals ideas of health in the widest sense: as balance and imbalance as well as on a societal and personal level, looking at how people navigate and share resources within a city.

mercoledì 16 febbraio 2011

Susi Butscher | Ton Steine Gaerten

Gayle going to Ton Steine garden

Susi, Gayle and Giulia

It was like the first summer last year so it was like making our experiences. They started out last year around this time, I think I joined in April. I saw the garden, then in March I asked to participate and they had a little plot for me.  Mine is the one on the corner with the table.

Allotments at Ton Steine garden

Now we are full, there’s no free plots left and but in the beginning it was like whoever came just like they should accept that it is more of a group things than an individual, like ‘Its my land and I will not talk to anybody.’ So it’s a really mixed group, a really mixed group, we didn’t expect it to be like this.
Turkish people, because a lot of Turkish people live here, but like even old Turkish people who do not speak a lot of German, and some, I don’t know where in Africa, but some. The Turkish women always have a Samovar and during the summer time they make like a picnic and serve tea to the others.

There’s one Turkish thing, I dont know the name, because its like kohl, cauliflower, but its only the leaf, not the whole head, that’s something that is typically Turkish and they are happy because that is something that you cannot buy here. But then there’s one of the African guys, then he was really happy too because he knew the same plant.  So they are connecting in some way. They make like what you usually make with vine leaves, but they do not take the vine leaves, but this thing.

Gayle and Susi talking

Different ways of fencing
the Turkish corner

However we didn’t expect it to be like this much, because we had these tomatoes there by the corner of the side walk and they were like phswww, gone, so well the local government did not want us to put fences because they say it’s a public space.  But still we want it for the dogs because the dogs come, you know people walk with their dogs, the dogs run in, so I think we will work on this, so at least we have a little door so that the dogs cannot come in.

Ton Steine overview


There’s a Spanish girl who asked to put a recipe on the wall, and its what we did, and we cooked this recipe.  She says that she did this all over the world, especially to make people, when there are ethnic tensions, to make people think, to make people more in contact with other ethnics.  The ingredients were grown from here, but we do not have eggplants. 

the recipe


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