These days every time I walk by the community garden where my plot is located, I start feeling itchy. I know we’re all ramped up for the 2010 Winter Olympics and it’s only mid-February, but the crocuses are already in full bloom and we haven’t a stitch of snow on the local mountains (ironic, isn’t it?). That MUST mean it’s time to think about the garden!
If you’re getting all twitchy for a gardening fix, here are a couple of upcoming events at VanDusen Botanical Garden to get you ready for planting:
Presented by the BC Master Gardeners Association, the annual Seedy Saturday is held in Floral Hall. A celebration of heritage varieties and organic gardening featuring more than 30 growers, seed companies and exhibitors and Heritage Seed Swap. There will be a variety of seed-inspired activities for the whole family. Admission by donation.
Saturday, February 27, 2010
10:00 am – 4:00 pm
5251 Oak Street at 37th Avenue
Annual Manure Sale
Give your garden a spring tonic! Cost is $5 for a 20kg bag. For information and pre-orders email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday, March 6, 2010
10:00 am – 3:00 pm
5251 Oak Street at 37th Avenue – Parking lot
Sabine and Seigfried of Germany eat local in Vancouver, BC
At Vandusen Garden’s 2008 Harvest Celebration and Farmers Market I got to talking with a lovely couple from Germany, Sabine and Siegfried Herzog of Baden-Baden. They were out enjoying the day’s events, tasting the local fare and we instantly bonded over an appreciation for quality wine and my ability to say “I can’t speak German, but I understand a little” in German.
I learned that the German wine we drink here in Canada isn’t the good stuff. I advised that the best of BC wine country’s harvest is more likely found at the independent liquor stores and quality restaurants than the local government retailer. They had already discovered so, they assured me.
Note to self, on those special occasions, remember to ask for the quality wine, even if it’s not on the regular menu.
Vandusen Botanical Garden’s 2008 Harvest Celebration and Farmers Market was a great opportunity to take in both the fabulous Vandusen gardens and delicious garden produce. A wide variety of food products were available as expected, but I was also intrigued to discover a few organizations that are making a difference in the community.
The Vancouver Food Policy Council has succeeded in having a Food Charter adopted by the Vancouver City Council, indicating they are committed to “the development of a coordinated municipal food policy” and a “just and sustainable food system.” The VFPC continue to work with a variety of organizations and programs to further these goals.
Originally begun as a resource for underprivileged families, the Community Kitchen Program has grown to bring people from all walks of life together. In partnership with the Greater Vancouver Food Bank, this community-building program uses church and community centre kitchens, as well as its own facility, as a meeting place for people to gather, learn, cook, and eat together.
UBC Farms and Friends of the UBC Farm were on hand to highlight the innovative research, sustainability education, and food security initiatives that the student-run farm has been involved in since its inception in 2000. Friends of UBC Farm is working to raise awareness of the University of British Columia’s plan to develop the property for yet more market housing at the expense of the valuable contribution the farm provides in creating a sustainable food system and culture.
Three more examples of the communities that good food builds. Delicious.