Visit six amazing gardens in the walkable/bike-able edition of the Nelson Edible Garden tour, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sunday.
Talk to the growers and learn how they’ve succeeded in maximizing production, dealing with steep slopes, extending the season, conserving water and more. The gardens are between Uphill and Lakeside Park to encourage tour participants to walk or bike.
This year SEEDS, the West Kootenay EcoSociety, the Nelson Food Cupboard, and Interior Health Authority have partnered to organize the event. The gardens include three organizations’ gardens, the Nelson Food Cupboard, the Nelson Women’s Centre, and SEEDS, as well as three individuals’ gardens.
“Our new garden program has been showing lots of early successes,” says Marya Skrypiczajko, Nelson Food Cupboard coordinator.
“Hundreds of pounds of vegetables have been harvested and given out through our food bank. Participants, including volunteers and supported employees, have been telling us how physically and mentally therapeutic the gardening experience has been for them.”
People who stop by the Food Cupboard Garden can tour the site with the staff and board of directors or pick up a handout and visit the garden on their own. A photo board of the garden’s evolution will be posted and refreshments will be available.
“My favourite part of gardening is sharing the experience with others,” says John Alton who has been working at his garden in Uphill for about six years.
Daniel Schneider stresses the importance of a watering system, compost and creative use of space says “sharing of gardening tips and tricks has always been an oral tradition for me. I got my start from my mom and dad, and now get information from friends who are fellow gardeners and from local farmers.”
“We have been working in our outdoor garden space at Lakeside Park and have been donating some healthy harvests to organizations around town,” says Eva Hernandez, SEEDS executive director. “SEEDS is looking ahead with excitement and optimism. The Edible Garden Tour is a great opportunity for people to come and visit us and hear what we will be busy with over the next several months,”
“I’m so pleased that the Nelson community has a now five-year tradition of showcasing their edible gardens. More space for locally grown food and less for ornamental lawns show how our community is taking local food security seriously, while having a lot of fun in the dirt,” says Montana Burgess, West Kootenay EcoSociety community organizer.
A digital map of the tour can be found at bit.ly/NelsonEdibleGardens2015.