Happy 1 Year Anniversary to Karakung Reef!

:: this was sent out as our newsletter ::

It was almost exactly a year ago this week that Holobiont Laboratory began to set up our new space at Cobbs Creek in earnest! We call the tiny plot of land that we acquired in fall of 2022 Karakung Reef – as Karakung was the the Lenni-Lenape people's original name for the adjacent creek.

On February 25-26 o'f 2023, a small crew of generous people helped us to move two structures onto the small rowhouse-sized and grass-covered parcel. We continue to extend our gratitude for their efforts as those were two days of real adventure and unknowns.

The structures that we acquired had both previously been used at the Greensgrow West site on Baltimore Avenue before it shut down and Stacey, a volunteer member of the Greensgrow board provided a ton of logistic assistance in making it possible for them to come into our use. Pictured here is the tiny house making its wide-girthed way down Baltimore Avenue. Huge shout out to Junior who agreed to be its driver and helped us maneuver it up the sloped hill of the lot without getting the rented pick-up truck that was hauling it permanently stuck in the small back alley behind. No small feat!

The tiny house rolling down Baltimore ave

On both days, we relied on others' arms, legs, spirits, and lifting power to help us clean out both structures, disengage electrical wiring, remove tons of rocks from the roof of the shipping container, disassemble and reassemble doors, windows and more. Shout outs are due and overdue to Steph, Irit, James, Thomasin, Robin, Owen, Junior, and Greensgrow volunteers who helped with all the disassembling.

We originally thought that moving the modified shipping container (the second of the two structures) would be the easier task, as we had hired a mover with a flat bed truck to come get that for us. However, it turns out that despite all our work at disconnecting wiring, clearing off the green roof, removing obstacles in its path, and creating clearance for the moving truck to enter, etc. --- we had failed to notice that at the very top, along one edge, the container was still firmly welded onto the second shipping container on the site.

We thank that driver for his patience and wherewithal as he attempted to help us use grinder blade after grinder blade and battery after battery to separate the two structures. Thank you James in particular for never losing sight of that goal! We couldn’t have done it without you!


We’ve been taking our time since then – to establish the space and beautify it and make it into the workplace that we intend for it to be.

lowers coming up in a raised bed
In the months since, we are excited to have the space be made infinitely more colorful and welcoming via the installation of an art piece by the inimitable and powerful People’s Paper Co-op. And by April of 2023, dozens and dozens of tulips and daffodils and garlic, planted by folks who helped us first establish garden beds at the space in November 2022, were already coming into bloom.

We now have an off-grid solar power system installed on the roof of the shipping container that, as of two weeks ago, now runs electric to the tiny house as well. It’s incrementally getting there!

We hope to have you over in the spring to see it all! Maybe we’ll make a cake and get some beer and seltzers and aim to catch up and kick it with so many of you who made it possible.

With deep thanks and anticipation for more growth to come.

Happy 1 Year Anniversary to Karakung Reef!

In struggle and solidarity, Emily & Dave,

Giant wooden PPC cutouts

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