I don’t know about you but every year around this time I start wishing the snow away and start thinking about Spring time and what plants I’m going to put in my garden! I happened to be in Victoria, BC this past weekend and was lucky enough to be at their 21st annual Seedy Saturday. These Seedy Saturday events are designed to promote the use of heritage and open-pollinated seeds as much as possible and they have a wide variety of local BC suppliers, nurseries, a seed exchange and numerous information displays to help answer any questions you may have about planting a garden. I’ll share with you a few of the really innovative and cool displays I came across and share what seeds I picked up to use in my garden this year.
One of the neatest things I saw at S.S. was something called Aquaponics. It’s a re-circulating system that simultaneously supports the growth of fish and plants. It’s a completely closed organic system. You could grow lettuce, herbs and other small vegetables up top and be raising tilapia for your family to eat at maturation in the tank. Amazing! I have never seen anything like it. Check them out at www.VictoriaAquaponics.com.
Another really interesting project I cam across was that of the Sustainable Farming Apprenticeship Program. Basically you commit a minimum of 8 weeks and go help out a farmer with their season. In exchange you learn all about sustainable organic farming practices. What a neat idea! Check them out at www.soilapprenticeship.org.
One of the great programs on offer for those looking to become a Master Gardener is that put on by The Victoria Master Gardener’s Association. You commit to a 16-week classroom course combined with 60 volunteer hours in order to receive the designation. Perfect for those wanting to learn more about their green thumb and learn from like-minded individuals.
Seeds!! With so much amazing selection and so many top quality nurseries being represented it was hard to choose what seeds to bring back with me. From Stellar Seeds based out of Kaslo, BC I choose their certified organic Cilantro, Joes Long Cayenne peppers and the lovely medicinal herb Hyssop (great for coughs and sore throats!). From the local Omega Blue Farms I picked up some Organic mix which contains a blend of red and green lettuces, kales, spinach, beet greens, mizuna, mustard, radish leaf, arugula, fennel, komatsuna, shungiku and cress. Also some lovely Red Beets in the Detroit Supreme variety, and broccoli in the Calabrese variety. I also picked up some lentils that I am going to start sprouting this week (shall post a blog about sprouting soon!).
Calgary’s own Seedy Saturday is on March 15, 2014 at the Hillhurst Sunnyside Community Centre. Check out their site for more info: http://seedysaturdaycalgary.shawwebspace.ca/pages/view/event_details/
Happy Spring daydreaming!
Cordelia McFadyen, RHN
Holistic Nutritionist at Inspired Living Nutrition