GardenFest


GardenFest Poster (1)

Title: GardenFest
Location: Lush Valley Harvest Community Garden 721 Harmston Ave, Courtenay
Link out: Click here
Description: Please join us Sunday, July 9th from 11am – 4pm at LUSH Valley’s Share the Harvest Community Garden for GardenFest!

GardenFest is a celebration of all things related to growing your own veggies! We will have multiple workshops led by local garden experts on topics ranging from starting your own veggie garden, soil basics, permaculture, composting and much more!

There will also be kids activities, a seed and plant swap, tours of the garden and a chance to get to know other gardeners in our community.

Admission is by donation with all proceeds going back towards our Share the Harvest Community Garden. Come to one workshop or stay for them all!

Start Time: 11:00
Date: 2017-07-09
End Time: 16:00

June 19th, 2017: Lynda Smith ‘Preserving the Harvest’

On Monday June 19, CV Horticultural Society presents “Preserving the Harvest”.  In this colourful presentation, Lynda Smith from Lawn to Food, will share new ideas on how to use our garden bounty daily and food saving methods for future consumption. She thinks about the word preserving in a waste-not context. “We all spend time and money growing food, lets make sure that most of it ends up in our bellies not the compost pile”. Eating, freezing, canning, dehydrating, pickling and fermentation are some of the topics that will be covered. Including tips on how to NOT get overwhelmed with garden produce abundance during the busy summer months.

Come join us at the Courtenay Filberg. Doors open at 6:45 pm.  Annual memberships are still available for $20 ($30 family couple), but guests are welcomed for only $5.  Membership brings many, many benefits and more details can be found at:www.comoxvalleyhortsociety.ca

 Meet ‘n’ Greet begins at 6:45 p.m., unless otherwise noted due to a special event planned for a meeting. Announcements and Club business starts promptly at 7:30 p.m. The Guest Speaker presentation follows. The meeting wraps up at about 9:00 p.m. after the Guest Speaker question period.
 

May15th, 2017: Peggy Carswell & Kel Kelly “Back from the Brink”

At our May meeting we welcome Peggy Carswell and Kel Kelly with their presentation “Back from the Brink.” A trip to explore the northeast corner of India almost 20 years ago led these two Comox Valley residents on an amazing and challenging journey into the world of tea.

They will present images and stories about their work with farmers and small-scale tea growers in villages in rural Assam, and share some interesting and not well-known facts about tea. They will also have a selection of teas for purchase, as well as some textiles from the region. 

Meet ‘n’ Greet begins at 6:45 p.m., unless otherwise noted due to a special event planned for a meeting. Announcements and Club business starts promptly at 7:30 p.m. The Guest Speaker presentation follows. The meeting wraps up at about 9:00 p.m. after the Guest Speaker question period.

 

April 24, 2017: Lynda Smith “Lawn to Food”

The Comox Valley Horticultural Society welcomes Lynda Smith who has transformed her quarter acre suburban lot at 1483 Hillside Avenue in Comox into year round food production. She helps people take responsibility for their own health and food security by planting vegetable gardens, fruit shrubs and trees.

Lynda competed on Chopped Canada last year, spreading her passionate “transform lawn to food production” message. She owns Urban Farm Stand which is stocked daily with seasonal produce from their organic gardens, baked goods, local free range eggs, bedding plants and artwork. She also builds new gardens and provides seasonal maintenance for vegetable plots in Comox and Courtenay. If you aspire to have a few veggie pots on the patio, or grow a self-sufficient food supply, she can help you reach your goals through inspiration and/or perspiration. You too can live in a vibrant environment with nutritious food a few steps from your door. Her website at www.lawntofood.com is filled with food adventures, recipes and enthusiasm.

This April 24 meeting is also our very popular Members Plant Sale, so don’t miss this opportunity to find some new plant treasures at very reasonable prices. Membership offers many benefits for only $20 (family couple $30). Further details can be found under the Membership tab above.  Doors at the Courtenay Filberg open early at 6:30 pm for this meeting only. The meeting starts promptly at 7:30 pm.

March 20, 2017: Lynda Smith “Gardening with Kids”

Speaker Change for the CVHS General Meeting – Monday, March 20, 2017
 
Unfortunately, our scheduled Guest Speaker, Chanchal Cabrera has become ill after a very long trip back from the UK.  Therefore, she will be unable to speak on the topic of Shinrin Yoku as planned.  Chanchal has provided us with a recorded talk on Shinrin Yoku that she did a few weeks ago (alas, without the pictures).  You can find that talk (and other topics that may be of interest) that presented at The Plant Medicine Summit at https://shiftnetwork.infusionsoft.com/go/pmd17a16677/a16677
 
Using her magical powers, our Program Chair has waved her wand and has already scheduled another Guest Speaker for Monday night.  Lynda Smith will be speaking about “Gardening with Kids.”  For those of you that have children or grandchildren that you would like to get involved the garden and the hobby of gardening, this topic is going to be of great interest to you. 
 
We start at the usual time on Monday night – doors open at 6:45pm.  And don’t forget it is our “Spring a Friend” meeting where all guests get into the meeting for free and are eligible to win a free 2017 CVHS membership (up to a $30 value)!

Spring 2017 Plant Sale

Mark your calendars!


Comox Valley Horticultural Society

Spring 2017 Plant Sale

Florence Filberg Center

411 Anderton Avenue, Courtenay, BC

Saturday, May 13, 2017 9:30am to 11:30am


It is finally time for our fabulous Spring Plant Sale! This is our biggest fundraiser of the year, and our members have been pinching, potting, pulling and pruning their favorite plants to donate to the plant sale. Savour the eclectic collections of rare varieties and mysterious wonders that have been hidden away all year for this moment! And please, bring you wallet. Cash only. Doors open at 9:30am!

Gardens in Bloom 2016: Select Photographs

The CVHS is pleased to present select photographs of nine of the ten gardens on the Gardens in Bloom 2016 Tour (the green link below each will open the pictures in a new window).


Garden One

This large rural garden frames a stunning view of Georgia Strait and the Coastal Mountains. An amazing variety of evergreen trees and shrubs was selected to meet the challenges of coastal exposure to weather and the daily presence of deer. A lovely variegated holly at the entrance hints at the clever combinations of textures, shapes and tones of colour seen throughout the garden in a predominantly green setting. Pieris varieties, perennials and flowering shrubs add colour and contrast. Sloping beds are supported by large rocks complementing the scale of this garden.


Garden One


Garden Two

This diverse and established garden has a unique variety of trees, shrubs and perennials. It is a great garden in which to wander. Pause to enjoy a waterfall and pond with fish, water plants and a real dock. Stroll past the multiple raised vegetable beds and fruit trees. Don’t miss the abundance of interesting plants from creepers to climbers along the paths towards the house. Once in the backyard, enjoy the woodland garden with a view of the distant mountains and the recently transplanted climbing roses and clematis on the fence below.


Garden Two


Garden Three

This garden was professionally designed and planted to replace a lawn and to create a wheelchair accessible, low maintenance front yard. Ground covers, grasses, variegated yuccas and small evergreen shrubs, such as boxwood, intermingle with rocks and dry riverbeds. The center of the garden features a beautiful witch hazel and a handsome specimen of sequoia. A nicely sculpted California lilac defines the property’s edge, while a rose covered trellis borders the path to the front door.


Garden Three


Garden Four

This large oceanfront property is like a private park. Extensive lawns flow down toward the house bordered by large mixed beds. Closer to the house an impressive waterfall cascades over rocks and through an Asian-inspired garden area. On the ocean/pool side of the house additional beds are filled with mass plantings of shrubs, annuals and perennials. Of particular botanical interest in this garden is the diverse and extensive use of deciduous trees, which provide shade, privacy and beauty in this lovely setting.


Garden Four


Garden Five

The owner of this unique city garden describes herself as “a girl on a small lot with the heart of a farmer.” This hidden gem provides food all year. Every inch is filled with vegetables, perennials, climbers, fruit, and especially an amazing variety of owner-grafted apples; don’t miss the Belgian fence. Room was even made for a greenhouse to complement the continuous food production. This gardener’s passion carries well beyond the bounds of her fence with a variety of shrubs, trees and native plants on the street side.


Garden Five


Garden Seven

This lush, densely-planted garden is small in size, but large in impact. It’s a plant lover’s garden full of unusual varieties, displayed in well-balanced garden beds. While walking through this garden you will be surrounded by trees, shrubs, climbers and woodland plants crowding to the very edge of the path. The crevice garden is an amazing part of this horticultural gem created with great knowledge and care. Whimsical pottery characters hide among the plants. Tread very carefully among the delicate plants popping up along the garden paths and enjoy the journey.


Garden Seven


Garden Eight

This charming small city garden offers lawn-free beds in the front and an intimate outdoor living space in the back. The shady canopy of a large cedar tree under-planted with shrubs, perennials and grasses invites you in from the street. Plantings in the sunny backyard surround a unique patio imprinted with fern leaves and cedar. Clematis varieties creep up the fence. Pots with shrubs and annuals add interest and colour. Don’t miss the back lane garden, a surprising use of an often overlooked space featuring a pretty weeping maple and a tiny path.


Garden Eight


Garden Nine

If you have ever wondered how much food it is possible to grow in a city garden while including beautiful trees, shrubs and perennials, this is a garden you will want to see. Raised beds packed with amazing varieties of vegetables and tomatoes abound. Here you can learn all about seed saving, companion planting, the art of food production and efficient use of garden space. Flower beds full of perennials, flowering shrubs and small trees complement the raised beds both in the front and the back yards.


Garden Nine


Garden Ten

A labor of love, this front garden is one of a kind. Roses, roses, roses! Here you can admire over 100 roses, including ramblers and climbers. Also of interest is the amazing structure of owner-designed stone walls used to create walk ways and garden beds. Don’t miss the large sculpted smoke tree bordering the driveway.


Garden Ten

 

 

February 20, 2017: Donna Balzar “No Space? No Problem!”


6:45 p.m.       Doors open
7:30 p.m.       Announcements
~ 7:45 p.m.    Guest Speaker presentation
~ 9:00 p.m.    Meeting wraps up after Question period with our Guest Speaker


Our very special guest speaker Monday Feb. 20 features Donna Balzer, award winning HGTV host of Bugs & Blooms, a regular CBC radio guest in Alberta and a home gardener who says she makes mistakes so you don’t have to. Donna will speak to us on maximizing space in smaller gardens, by creatively cultivating  in vertical gardens. You can grow more food more efficiently, and multiply your yields faster than breeding bunnies! Donna is also the co-author of the popular, NO GUFF Vegetable Gardening,  with Steven Biggs. Their “she-says, he- says” banter shows there is more than one way to slice a tomato and turns growing gardens into a really fun process. Their gardening journey started out in Montreal, spending some quality time in Alberta and Qualicum Beach.  With Donna’s 30 years of horticultural experience, her tips,techniques and hand outs will make this evening a “can’t miss” event. Donna is currently writing the Gardener’s Gratitude Journal, and Under Cover:Grow Food Faster, and is a contributor to Groundbreaking Food Gardens by Nikki Jabbour. Donna will have copies of her book available for $25 cash, or $27 (including GST) if paying by credit card.

The doors at the Courtenay Filberg open at 6:45 pm, with our Guest Speaker starting around 7:45pm. Come early to fill out your $20 annual membership form (family $30) and join us to reap the many, many benefits of being a Comox Valley Horticultural Society member. Guests are welcome for a $5 charge.

January 16, 2017: Gordon Mackay, “Pruning Trees and Shrubs: the how, when and …WHY! “


6:30 p.m.    Doors open
7:30 p.m.    Announcements and Business
8:00 p.m.    Guest Speaker presentation
9:00 p.m.    Meeting wraps up after Guest Speaker question period


On Monday January 16, Comox Valley Horticultural Society welcomes Gordon Mackay, from Alba Plants in Cowichan Bay, with his very timely topic of Pruning Trees and Shrubs: the how, when and …WHY! Mackay will speak on pruning techniques, covering do’s and don’ts, with special reference to fruit trees, and summer and winter tasks. Gordon’s passion for all things green began in Glasgow, studying at the Threave School of Gardening, where he was mentored by Magnus Ramsay and achieved the top student award for plant identification. In 1994 he was invited to Vancouver Island to establish a specialty plant nursery, Alba Plants, and decided this was the place to be. He is a certified arborist with the International Society of Arboriculture, and instructor at the Horticultural Centre for the Pacific in Victoria.

Our doors at the Florence Filberg Centre in Courtenay open at 6:30 p.m.

Powdery Mildew

A fungal disease which is found throughout North America, powdery mildew is easily recognizable by its white or greyish, talcum powder-like circles appearing on leaves, flowers and fruits of various vegetables, fruits, perennials and shrubs. The list includes roses, lilacs, dahlias, begonias, delphiniums, phlox, monarda (bee balm), euphorbias (spurge), catalpa (bean tree), zinnias…as well as squash, cucumbers, beans, peas, melons, apples, pears, strawberries, gooseberries, and grapes.

Zucchini ‘Dark Star’ with powdery mildew

Leaves covered by powdery mildew cannot manufacture enough food which can impact on plant growth and fruit development, depending on the rate of infection. But rarely does the mildew kill the plant. It just looks horrible.

There are a number of different fungi species responsible for powdery mildew. Some are species specific, others will attack a wider range of plant varieties. In regions of high humidity and moderate temperatures, the fungi produce mycelium and spores on the surface of affected foliage. The spores are then carried by wind currents to other plants.

Strangely enough, it is the wind which will reduce the risk of fungal infection. Providing adequate spacing between plants will increase air circulation and decrease the moisture retention on the leaves. Opening up shaded areas to more sunlight will also help.

Autumn is another trying time of year for protecting our plants and crops from powdery mildew. A lot of fungi spores repose in the soil and come fall, the rains splashing up onto the plants will often carry a few spores with the droplets.

No matter the time of year, once a plant has been infected, the mycelium will continue to spread on the leaf surface regardless of the moisture conditions.

And there is no known cure for powdery mildew…only prevention and a modicum of control once it appears. Best line of defence is to remove the affected leaves as soon as you spot them. Always put the infected plant parts in the garbage. Never put them in the compost unless you have a very hot pile.

To prevent powdery mildew on susceptible plants, mix up either of the following recipes. Both are reasonably effective.

Recipe #1:

One part cow’s milk
Nine parts water

Combine ingredients in a sprayer, if you have a lot of plants to treat…or a spray bottle if treating just one or two. Will have to be repeated after each rainfall.

 

Recipe #2:

1 gal water
1 tbsp baking soda
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp dish soap

Combine all ingredients, in order as listed, in a sprayer or spray bottle. Preferably apply this mixture on cloudy days with no threat of rain. Applying on sunny days risks sunburn on the leaves.

Will protect the plant longer because of the addition of vegetable oil and soap in this recipe. However, it must be reapplied after a few rainfalls, or an especially hard downpour.

 

Submitted by Leslie Cox
CVHS member and writer as the “Duchess of Dirt”