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Little Free Plant Stands sprouting in Colwood

The plant exchange was started by a group of passionate gardeners
Josephine Neufeld at the newly opened Little Free Plant Stand in Colwood. This one is at Herm Williams Park on Kelly Road. (Harvey Neufeld/Submitted)

Colwood has an exciting new exchange happening for aspiring gardeners and food growers.

The Little Free Plant Stand was inspired in part by little free libraries, in part by a love of gardening, a whack of extra food plants, and a group of friends committed to giving back to the community.

Josephine Neufeld, an avid gardener, came up with the idea along with friends and food growers Brittany Miller, Joslyn McDonald, Ashley Hollier and Neufeld’s husband Harvey Neufeld. Together they grew and collected seedlings and helped build the three plant stands.

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The three stands officially opened on April 20 to coincide with the spring planting season. One is at Herm Williams Park on Kelly Road, the second at 555 Langholme Dr., and the third at 3283 Galloway Rd.

The stands are stocked with lettuces, arugula peas and more. Tomatoes will come soon — Neufeld is letting them grow a little more in her greenhouse before moving them over.

Each stand will be maintained by volunteers, but the hope is that people will take from the stands as they need and give as they are able.

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Colwood contributed with a grant that required a matching contribution from volunteer time, donated services or materials. The Create Places Colwood program issued four grants at the end of 2020 for what it calls placemaking and community recovery and resiliency.

The other recipients are the Colwood Garden Society for a pollinator and indigenous plant garden, Laura Davis for a series of interpretive signs about painter Emily Carr, and Cindy Andrew who will create painted graphics on sidewalks to encourage play and activity.

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