Urban Farmer: Sue Talbot ’69

by Matt Hutaff

Sue Talbot '69“I’ve always had a garden,” says Sue Talbot ’69 as she walks past the plants, rain barrels, solar panels, beekeeping boxes, and chickens that dot her backyard in Echo Park near downtown Los Angeles. “It’s a means of getting to know your community, and it’s instrumental to my own well-being.”

Talbot cultivated her interest in urban gardening after moving into the home she shares with her partner, Liebe Gray ’69. Raised in rural Northern California, she wanted to keep a connection to that lifestyle and resolved to maintain her green thumb in Los Angeles.

With a footprint of less than a quarter acre, it’s impressive to see what Talbot has created. She grows a variety of seasonal greens, keeps two colonies of bees (one of which she coaxed down from a tree), and raises chickens. Her neighbors love it—and not just because she shares the fruits of her labor.

“I was ‘green’ before it was trendy,” she says. “It didn’t start as a conscious effort to make the world a better place, but I’m bound and determined now to keep it in my life as much as possible.”

Talbot also serves as a member of the Scripps College Sustainability Committee, where she is “constantly awestruck” by the skill and dedication of students, staff, and faculty working to better the community.

“Sustainability isn’t just a cause or a buzzword,” she says. “It’s a lifestyle to do what you can, when you can, to help the environment. And it’s a whole lotta fun.”


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