Urban Agriculture
University of California
Urban Agriculture

Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indian Tribe members create a healthy garden

At the end of February, before COVID-19 disrupted normal life, members of the Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indian Tribe, in a remote area of Riverside County, gathered to plant vegetables and herbs in the A'Avutem (elders) garden.

Members of the Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indian Tribe plant vegetables and herbs in the A’Avutem (elders) garden on Feb. 27, 2020.

Six raised garden boxes were installed several years ago with funding from the California Rural Indian Health Board, but stood empty. UC Cooperative Extension nutrition, family and consumer sciences advisor Chutima Ganthavorn and vegetable crops advisor Jose Aguiar obtained approval from the Tribal Council to engage the Youth Council in planting a new garden with seniors.

Three youth and six senior members of the tribe harvested produce on the morning of May 12, 2020.

This intergenerational group planted chili peppers, bell peppers, onions, cherry tomatoes, tomatoes, corn, mint, basil and lemon grass Feb. 27. Select tribal members, including three youth and six seniors, harvested produce on the morning of May 12. While wearing masks and practicing social distance protocols, they harvested three boxes of tomatoes, onions, bell peppers and chili peppers.

"It is really nice to see the fruit of their efforts," Ganthavorn said.

Members of the Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indian Tribe created a healthy vegetable garden.
Posted on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 9:45 AM


This is awesome news!  
Excellent community driven work Chutima and Jose.

Posted by Susana Matias on May 19, 2020 at 11:51 AM

Wonderful work!

Posted by Daisy Valdez on May 19, 2020 at 2:21 PM

We want to thank Chutima and Jose for all the hard work they put in to help us get this garden started.  
We also what to thank Beverlyann Cedeno and Columba Quintero of the Torres-Martinez Grants Department for pushing this out and not giving up.  
This is just a start that we plan to continue with with our A'Avutem (Elder) and Torres-Martinez Youth Council.  
Gary Wayne Resvaloso Jr  
Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla Indians  
Tribal Council Member, Proxy

Posted by Gary Wayne Resvaloso Jr on May 20, 2020 at 10:58 AM

Men Miyaxwen Gary!  
A big thank you to the Tribal Council as well for all the support! This project would not have been possible without the enthusiasm from the tribal elders and members of the Torres Martinez Youth Council. It's been a great pleasure to work with Columba, Beverly and you all.  
UCANR and CalFresh Healthy Living, UCCE Riverside County value our partnership with the Torres Martinez Desert Cahuilla people and look forward to working together in the future.  

Posted by Chutima Ganthavorn on May 20, 2020 at 11:37 AM

Alowah, thank you to all who continue to contribute to this project. The A’Avutem are happy with the continued outcome. They were happy to share with me they just harvested on Monday again. One commented “salad time”. We definitely will share this news with all TM A’Avutem. -Maxine , A’Avutem Committee Chairwoman

Posted by Mary Resvaloso on May 21, 2020 at 8:21 AM

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