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22. March 2018
Very well… we started to prepare the „domo“ around 6 the evening before. The place was swarming with young parents and their toddlers, some gardeners, idle youngsters… Eva brings a big green box that contains her herbarium. We swept the gravel off the floor, wiped the table, found some chairs (one in the trash close to the entrance) and stuck a handful of remaining posters to the walls of the neighborhood. We passed a blue-eyed dog in a duffle coat (Madrid dogs often wear coats as long as the temperatures are still below 15 degrees:) and went for a beer.



Radio Gardening in Madrid

23. March 2018. Meeting at 9:15 at the entrance of Esta es Una Plaza; Caroline of Radio Hortelana had already opened the gate. Setting-up: All went well – thanks to ingenious Jesús of Medialab who had already made some tests the day before. Just like with Datscha Radio 17, we use the „Butt“-app for streaming and transmit via Udo Noll’s aporee streaming server.
The Plaza’s cat makes its appearance.
10:20 Eva, Kata and Joaquín arrive. Plants, sensors and watering cans are arranged next to the high bed of homeless cacti.
Maite takes pictures for the In-Sonora docu. Carolina has brought coffee, her Kalimba and a guitar.
11:50 Alberto of Esta es Una Plaza turns up. We are all happy and exited.

1st – 3rd hour

12:00 Here we go! Hola! Datscha Radio a tope!
After the introductions Carolina plays her kalimba to the sounds of gushing rain: An anti-rain spell that we hope will protect us from worse. Because rain for Madrid people is the most welcome excuse to stay at home! Apart from that, our electricity is provided from a solar battery – we are indeed a very ecological radio station!

13:00 Our program flows smoothly! A roughly by the hour organized schedule serves for orientation, all artists are bilingual, so we manage quite well with the translations.

Below you’ll find (later!!!!) an updated version of the program plan – the audio files will be shared on mix cloud asap (but not before 3rd of April). For now, let us look at some of the radio events of the day. Have fun!

14:15 Rain has finally come. Kata and Joaquín perform an astonishing set with plant radio music, sensors transforming the moisture levels of different plant pots and the green’s voltage into a soundscape with harmonica.

The cat loves it so much, it goes to sit on the roof just above our heads. A talk about listening and the rain.

Power cut!

Unfortunately the solar energy runs out…For some minutes we still broadcast on batteries but then we decide to interrupt our program.


14:45 Datscha Radio is back again on the air waves! One of the gardeners provided a connection from his neighboring house to the studio! The rain has stopped, the cat gets back in.

4rd – 6th hour…

We continue with the theme of plant talks: Eva Kurly presents her herbarium and introduced the African all-edible Moringa tree. Carolina plays and sings a poem from Argentinia. Santiago, who was working outside comes in an explains what they are presently building. Alberto has prepared two interviews about plant names and balcony plants with his parents. A delightful conversation, each one made over the telephone, the crackling interference in their voices making us forget the digital age.

17:00 A storm of theatre people blows into our tent: They are scheduled for a show in a venue nearby but somehow found this garden. Despite being in a hurry they improvise a vocal piece for us:) Listening to an interview from India about the Botanic Sanctuary in Gurukula and the preservation of vegetal microclimates. Appearance of Rafa from the artist organization The Hug. He brings music of Lau Mau, a Finnish singer whose work is closely connected to nature themes.

17:50 We still have unplayed recordings, yet it’s time for a resume of the broadcast material. Maite comes back and reintroduces the work of In-Sonora and talks about the festival planned for the next day.
18:00 The official end is postponed by half an hour because of the program interruption. We listen to Miyuki Jokiranta’s vocal encounters with her houseplants and finally to two excerpts of the „Atomic Garden“ by Alberto.
18:30 A gathering around the microphones, Thank you, dear listeners! Datscha Radio a tope!!!


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Almost all of us: Carolina, Eva, Kata, Jesús, Joaquin and Alberto

Dear all and all listeners,

I am still surprised and very happy: Datscha Radio happend in Madrid, in a garden, in a tent, with sunshine, rain, a fabulous cat, with gardeners, musicians, surprise guests and even a power cut in electricity!

None of this would have been possible without the support and activities of

Alberto Garcia, Anna Katarina Martin, Carolina Carrubba, Elena Arroyo, Eva Pilartes, Jesús Jara, Joaquin Diaz, Maite Camacho…

… and the community of Esta Es Una Plaza: Alberto, Santiago, Luis, Tommi and all the gardeners.

Many thanks also to Udo Noll/aporee.org for providing the stream!

Tomorrow: Presentation of the work (as well as the work of some other artists residing here at Medialab at 6pm!

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mit: Eva Kurly

Yes, we are broadcasting: Plant radio, medicinal plants and are now listening to a concert for bees by Eva Kurly. The happiest of all: Alberto and the cat!

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we interrupt our programm for maybe 15 minutes because the solar collector cannot collect enough sun rays. We return as soon as the cable is connected to Luis’ house!

Datscha Radio a tope!

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Design: Alberto Garcia

Esta es Datscha Radio Madrid! Estaremos emitiendo el 23 de marzo de las 12 del mediodía a las 6 de la tarde, en directo desde el jardín urbano en la Calle Doctor Fourquet.

Datscha Radio es una radio efímera, aquí y ahora! Todo el mundo está invitado a venir, compartir y participar. Te esperamos!

Escucharás sonidos de los jardines de Madrid, conversaciones sobre arte, plantas y horticultura, conciertos en directo e improvisaciones. Datscha Radio Madrid está colaborando con Esta es una Plaza, MediaLab Prado, Aporee.org y Radio Hortelana, en el marco de la décima edición de In Sonora.

Vamos a retransmitir en streaming, desde datscharadio.de, y en la frecuencia 107.3 FM. Tráete la radio! Ven con tus historias de jardín! Ven a la Datscha! Datscha a tope!!

      1. DR18 - Datscha Radio


Esta es Datscha Radio Madrid! We will broadcast on the 23rd of March from 12-6pm directly from the urban garden in the Calle Doctor Fourquet.

Datscha Radio is a temporary radio station and invites you to come, share and participate.

You’ll hear the sounds of Madrid gardens, talks about art and horticulture, live concerts and improvisations. Datscha Radio Madrid happens in cooperation with: Esta es una Plaza, MediaLab Prado, aporee and Radio Hortelana.

We’ll transmit on stream on datscharadio.de, and on location on 107.3 fm. Bring your radio! Bring your garden stories! Go Datscha! Datscha a tope!





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16. Marzo 2018

19:30 Visit to the Humus Film Fest, a brilliant idea! 16 short films in 4 categories about urban gardening: Experimental (missed but one half of the last one), comedy, documentary, fantastic.
Some glimpses here: pole dance with potted plant, hilarious GoT-adaption, Esta es Una Plaza selling veggies as drugs (won a prize!), french refugee gardener (best in the category of docus to my mind), rapping youngsters, compost zombies, lots of food… Alberto Peralta doing fabulous moderation (they also won the fantastio prize – dealing carrots – ), craft beer, running into Elena and Carolina of Radio Hortelana.

22:00 Walking home (sounds of helicopters and police cars.  Pondering about some evident links of (Spanish) popular music/movie culture to urban gardening… I think this is different in Germany. Also: a definite emphasis on action. Taking a mental note to ask Señor Peralta. Seeing this:


22:15 Editing new Madrid sound field composition for the performance next day.

1:00 Sleep

17. Marzo 2018

8:00 Coffee (3)
Weather check: devastating. It is raining and cold. I don’t know how many times I have been told now that Madrid people hide at home when there is rain outside.

10:00 Dressing while bouncing the new piece

11:00 Setting up the Oficina des las plantas sin hogar with Alberto Garcia and Rosalia. We use the plants from the cantina and the security office for decoration, it looks great!

View of the Open-Air Oficina

View of the Open-Air Oficina and Security Plant

A Senora tells Alberto about her plant.

Unpacking the Madrid version.

 12:00 Rain subsides. Sounds of a Demonstration in the nearby streets. Medialab is swarming with mothers, babies, media and video workshop participants. A lady wants to adopt the „security plant“. No es possible. But we get an interview about one of her favorite plants. Times passes with some more interviews. People are interested to adopt but most of them “forgot” to bring plants.

1:00 Start of performance, all goes well. A sparkling gem in the the new piece is a song about flowers sung by Romi Casiles’ grandma, Elvira Margarita Sturla. There’s beer and tortilla chips and a señora comes and donates two plants, a very grown-up „bad mother“ and an adolescent dieffenbachia (surprise?). She also wants to take „Dark Securita“ home, but I can only offer her a can of beer. A friendly guest, Fernando, consents to sing a melancholy song from Argentinia for Datscha Radio’s singing pool collection. Comida con mis ayudantes.

16:00 Knocked out by the two glasses of excellent wine received with my food and in need of a siesta. Watching a SF-movie about life after dead with Robert Redford instead.

18:00 Idle research in academic papers. Using keywords around „garden“, „dependency“, „permeation“ I come (next to „Species, Historicity, and Path Dependency“ across the psycholinguistc term of „garden-path-sentences“, its German equivalent being the „Holzwegeffekt“. Anyway, this is about misleading grammar structures and the different ways in which these can be interpreted and/or „parsed“ by the reader. I think of the straight paths in the gardens here in their combination with the frequently met labyrinths … Can we also understand/”parse” garden designs as a language… l i k e a language?

19:00 Sort the pics for this entry.

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(Übersetzung folgt) Another quick diary of these days in the wonderland of Datscha Radio preparations. You’ll find an introduction of the (steadily growing) team here.

12. March

9:00 Coffee & mails. Agreement to meet Señora Bellet of the Botanic Garden to talk about its history and activities.

10:45 Printing out flyers and posters for the „Adopta-una-Planta“ event.

Flyer für diesen Samstag, 17. März

12:45 Leaving the building I run into kta and Joaquien who are on their way to one of the labs to set up a plant&soil sensory system.

13:00 A cat guards the security entrance of the garden. I gain admittance… a consistent minor problem: The guard needs my social security number to fill in the admittance form. The usual solution: present my visa card. By now the guards know me quite well, while the sequence of my multiple visits and mailings has made me think of the Botanic Garden offices as a kafkaesque „castle“.

On entering the offices i notice that the amanita has changed place.


Señora Maria Pellet receives me in her office. She’s very friendly and even speaks German. But we agree to do the interview in English. Afterward we go to the Bonsai section and take a pic.

13:15 Catching up with kta and Joaquim. A soft frequency hum permeates the air, there are plants, an arduino, micro sensors measuring the moisture in the pots, a dead deco cabbage plant, a very healthy looking aloe and a pot of the „bad mother plant“. We agree that „Grünlilie“ (German common name) is a nice word for it. Interview.

16:30 Editing the interview (too big to upload here, you’ll find it soon in the archive)

17:30 Meeting Jesús in the offices to discuss how to program an info video onto the wall of the Medialab. He’s just taking his exams… parallel to all the work with Medialab and Datscha Radio!

18:00 Datscha Radio artist’s meeting at the cantina. Romi Casile has finally arrived from Argentina. Although she has to leave already on the 16th, she likes to participate. Apart from working with sound objects, her grandmother knows how to sing songs about flowers and gardens. This is interesting!

18:45 The beer is a bit too expensive for a longer stay so we move upstairs to my „living room“. Maite, coordinator of IN-SONORA comes. Alberto and kta work on the translation of the jingle text into Spanish while I do a quick talk with Romi in my room.

19:15 We have a lot of fun speaking the jingle text. The artists and Maite talk me into recording it in Spanish. They say it sounds charming (but maybe it is just funny?)

We have an exchange about listening practices, art and society, the role of artists, money issues in artist lives and again about the importance of listening.
The most inspiring evening closes with a sip of duty free whiskey.

Rough editing of the recordings. Playing with some acoustic sketches :)

23:30 Relaxing with another rose plant website…

13. March

10:00 (!) Meeting up with Alberto as a translator to visit the „House of Honey“ in the Atocha street. Interview. Pedro warms up to our questions and in the end we get shown even the store rooms, the honey „mixing machine“ (of course it is not mixed but pure), and finally, as the talk turns to plants, the flowers and trees, Pedro himself rescues from offshoots or leaves falling „from the sky“ —

More of this in the next blog entry…

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