Colwood resident Lorraine Collett raises money for a herb garden at the Victoria Women’s Transition Housing Society by selling splits of her own plants by donation outside of her home on Pickford Road.

Herbs thrive off Colwood donations

Colwood woman grows herbs to aid others at the Victoria Women's Transition House Society shelter

Athriving garden at the Victoria Women’s Transition House Society shelter has a small Colwood-based gardening stand and its owner to thank for its success.

With the money she has raised selling herb plants from her own garden, Lorraine Collett created and maintains a garden with nearly two dozen varieties of herbs for the women at the shelter.

The shelter provides temporary emergency housing to women and their children, along with counselling and other services.

Money raised helped buy the shelter gardening tools and the occasional variety of plant Collett doesn’t have in her own garden at home. Collett said for the most part she does the work on the garden, but from time to time women at the shelter will chip in, along with the occasional staff member from a nearby church.

The herbs are also used for cooking at the shelter. Collett said when she cuts some of the herbs and puts them in the kitchen, they are used and gone in a flash.

“They say it’s great to have it fresh,” Collett said.

Everything from French tarragon to Greek oregano grows in the garden.

A sign by the herbs reads “We’re planted here for you to eat, we like to be watered as a treat, give us some water every couple of days, and enjoy us in the kitchen in so many ways.”

To make money for the society’s herb garden, Collett splits the herbs she grows at home and then sells the plants by donation at the front of her property on the 2900 block of Pickford Road in Colwood.

“They go out on the street and the donation go towards maintaining (the garden),” Collett said. “This season has been very slow but it might perk up.”

The herbs are out most weekends and some weekdays, weather and Collett’s schedule permitting.