Thursday, March 15, 2012

Spring! Seed Swaps, Gardening Workshops, Call for Volunteers

Late fall fennel seeds at sunset.

Spring is here at last, and with it comes the usual flurry of activity. Collingwood Community Garden plots are full for the year, but there are still a couple of available plots at the Cheyenne Avenue Community Garden. Please contact us for more information.

The Rooftop Garden is also slowly coming to life, and we'll be getting underway with our usual Wednesday evening drop-ins starting on April 4. So far we're up to our elbows in weeding (and weeding, and weeding), but have managed to get some peas and radishes planted.

March 10 was our annual Seed Swap and Sale at Renfrew Community Centre, with another coming up on March 31st at Collingwood Neighbourhood House, 10am-2pm. The Windermere Organic Gardeners will be here selling seeds saved from their garden, and we'll be raffling off a black compost bin as well. More details about all of this is soon to come.


Planning Your Year Round Garden
Wed Mar 21 7:00-9:00pm

Maximize your garden space by planning for all seasons! This workshop focuses on organic vegetable gardening with some attentionto fruit growing and beneficial flowers.

Renfrew Park Community Centre
2929 E22nd Ave.
All experience levels welcome.
Registration required.

Introduction to Permaculture
Saturday April 21

Chris Kasza and Jocelyn Durston of Farm for Life will be joining us to give an introduction to the art and science of permaculture. Permaculture seeks to develop sustainable agricultural practices modelled after the workings of natural ecosystems. Chris was one of our community gardeners and we're excited to learn from his experiences on the farm.

Both he and Jocelyn currently live on semi-rural land in Maple Ridge where they are incorporating permaculture techniques into their gardening and lifestyle endeavors. This year they are planning on taking their food growing techniques a step further by selling their produce in local farmer markets. Their presentation will include visual examples and stories about some of their permaculture projects, including herb spirals, hugelkultur beds and the early beginnings of food forest guilds. Come on out to get some ideas about how you can begin using permaculture in your own gardens, whatever the size!

Chris Kasza completed his Permaculture Design Certificate at Lost Valley Education Center in Oregon and his Permaculture Teacher Training at O.U.R. Ecovillage on Vancouver Island. Jocelyn Durston completed her Introduction to Permaculture Course through Verge Permaculture in Langley, B.C. and has plans to complete a Permaculture Design Course within the next year.

Collingwood Neighbourhood House
5288 Joyce St.
All experience levels welcome.
Registration required.
604-435-0323 or email Stephanie.

Still Creek Community Gardens Workshop Series

Still Creek Community Garden is located at 4410 Kaslo Street (across from 29th Avenue Skytrain Station). They are hosting an exciting workshop series this spring! Read on to find out more. For more information about the garden, you can visit their website.

Join Jodi Peters, a Certified Permaculture Designer and passionate urban farmer, in our Spring Gardening Workshops! With the precious collaboration of Still Creek Community Garden – 4410 Kaslo St, Vancouver, across the 29th Ave skytrain station (workshops held at this location).

FREE ADMISSION, Limited space. Please REGISTER at

Saturday, March 24th 2- 4pm

This workshop will begin with some foundational knowledge about soil structure and soil ecology. We will move from these concepts into the practical ways to create a thriving soil ecology, that will, in turn support healthy and nutritious plant growth. We will cover practices such as no-till gardening, soil amendments and fertilizers, mulch and the role of organic matter in the soil. Participants will leave this workshop with a clear understanding of what healthy soil is, and the basic steps to build and maintain it.

Thursday, April 5th 4:30 – 6:30pm
PLANNING THE GARDEN FOR MAXIMUM HARVEST – keys to successful succession planting

In this workshop we will look at some planning tools and tips to maximize harvests in small spaces. We will cover a number of plant varieties and how they work in a succession planting model, where the soil is never left bare, and something is always growing! We will also cover basic seeding and transplanting techniques to increase germination and reduce transplant shock. As well, we will briefly touch upon planning considerations for seed saving.

Wednesday, April 25th 4:30 – 6:30pm

Learn how to create amazing compost and overcome some of the challenges to composting in an urban setting. We will cover successful composting practices, compost bin options, rodent management, vermicompost (with worms!), troubleshooting, and community scale compost options. Bring all your questions – we have time for a good Q &A.

Sunday, May 13th 2 – 4pm
PLANT HEALTH AND NUTRITION – signs and symptoms

What are your plants telling you? Learn how to read the signs of plant health and deficiency, and diagnose a number of plant diseases. We will cover some insect identification, and participants will leave the workshop with a set of holistic principles for growing healthy, disease resistant, nutritious plants!

Wednesday, June 20th 4:30 – 6:30pm

Our pacific coast climate has an abundance of water from late fall through till early summer, but then we often get long spells with no rain at all, right in the middle of the vegetable garden’s time of highest water requirements! Learn how to reduce your garden’s watering requirements, as well as which vegetables need water and which are drought tolerant.

More to come!


SEED SAVING (September)


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