Libby McMinn stand in an area of Highlands Community Garden that will become part of a food forest. (Rick Stiebel/News staff)

Highlands Community Garden hosts food forest workshop

Edible trees grant plants the seeds

Highlands Community Garden’s food forest is a growing concern, thanks to a grant from Tree Canada.

The garden, which opened in May, is adding a food forest which will contain a wide selection of food-producing trees, said Libby McMinn, co-chair of Highlands Community Garden. “We’re extremely grateful for the grant that will form the backbone of the food forest we’re developing,” she noted. Tree Canada, a non-profit organization that promotes and nurtures the planting of tree in rural and urban area, donated $4,000 through it edible trees grant program. The funding enables the purchase of about 30 common fruit trees, including apple, pear, plum and cherry, McMinn noted, adding that the garden is a communal resource all members have access to. “We’re also planting some less common varieties, including mulberry, persimmon, almond and fig. Our goal is to demonstrate what’s possible in the Highlands, and to give people a place where they can grow food because most Highlands residents have poor soil, limited water and sunlight, and lots of deer.”

Highlands Community Garden, which has about 30 members, is hosting Food Forests: an ecological approach to growing for the future, toward that end. It will look at the design, benefits and appropriate plants for a food forest. Highlands Coun. Gord Baird, who will present the workshop, has a wealth of knowledge on permaculture principles and practices, plant selection, soil nutrients and management and pruning and grafting, McMinn noted.

Baird and his wife, Ann, co-owners of Eco-Sense Nursery, have developed a food forest on their property in the Highlands which provides the majority of their diet, along with annual crops.

“Food forestry is a practice of creating productive and stable food systems that mimic the natural ecological patterns,”

Baird explained. “These systems rely on interconnected relationships between plants, soil, microbes and fungi, and are more resilient to climate disruptions. They are also less prone to the impacts of drought and require minimal management once they are established. The concepts really arise from the methods employed by Indigenous people across the planet, and it’s commonly referred to as permaculture.”

The free workshop is on Sunday, Oct. 14 from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Highlands Community Hall at 729 Finlayson Arm Rd. For more information on the garden or the workshop, email highlandscommunitygarden@outlook.com.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

rick.stiebel@goldstreamgazette.com

Just Posted

Mayor David Screech says Camp Namegans has run its course

Break-in on private property in View Royal linked to homeless campers

Island Health encourages sexual assault survivors to #TrustYourself

New social media campaign urges survivors of sexual assault to seek medical care

Resident charged $48,350 fine for poisoning large Oak Bay tree

The district says this amount represents the appraised value of the tree

BC Ferries not as full as reported due to ability to book consecutive sailings

Multiple reservation booking strategy artificially inflates BC Ferries “current conditions”

‘She’s charging. Oh God’: Mama grizzly runs at B.C. man armed with shotgun

People online were quick to question – and defend – a man’s decision to shoot a grizzly bear charging him on a Bella Coola front yard

Red Sox beat Dodgers 8-4 in Game 1 of World Series

Benintendi has 4 hits as Boston cruises at Fenway

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Oct. 23

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Canada announces $20M fund for women entrepreneurs

New federal program will provide up to $100,000 for female business owners to grow their operations

Vancouver Island man claims falling ice smashed his truck windshield

Man discovered volleyball-sized chunk ice on his truck Saturday, near Nanaimo, B.C.

B.C. veteran combats PTSD in the ring and on the farm

Cam Tetrault is a valuable contributor at Quesnel’s Two Rivers Boxing Club

Fast ferries from B.C. spotted in Egypt

Controversial aluminum BC Ferries vessels ’big white elephants covered in dust,’ eyewitness says

Canadian troops, families take shelter in hotel after Florida hurricane

Most of the Canadians were evacuated from the military base before Hurricane Michael

B.C. jury trial hears police-sting audio of man accused of killing girl, 12

Garry Handlen has pleaded not guilty to the first-degree murder of Monica Jack on May 6, 1978.

Most Read