Big Plant Sale May 11th, 10am to 3pm

Nanaimo Community Gardens Society will be having its Annual Plant Sale on Saturday May 11th at the Beban Learning Gardens, the site at Beban Park. The sale will run from 10am to 3pm. This plant sale has previously been hosted at the Pine St Community Garden. Please note the change in location to the Beban Learning Gardens located beside the pitch and putt golf course at Beban Park.
Each year volunteers from our Greenhouse site raise beautiful, well-grown herb, vegetable and flower seedlings. These seedlings are grown without the use of chemical fertilizers or pesticides from open pollinated and heritage variety seeds and are sold to backyard gardeners throughout Nanaimo and area.
May is the ideal time of year for planting out your tender annual vegetables such as heirloom tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, peppers, herbs and edible flowers so come on out and pick up any plants you need to complete your warm-weather garden.
Start your garden with us!

2019 Gleaning Orientation Dates

Orientation dates have been set! Please attend one of the orientation dates below to join the program. You do not have to pre-register for a session – just show up! Remember to bring your membership fee (sliding scale $15-$25) and any friends or family that want to glean with you. Everyone will need to attend the entire orientation session to join the Gleaning Program. Latecomers will be asked to attend another orientation date. All your questions will be answered at these one-hour sessions. Please come to the Pine St Community Garden behind the Foodshare Centre at 271 Pine St. As the sessions will be held outside in the gazebo behind the parking lot, please be sure to dress for the weather.
• Sunday May 19th 10am – 11am
• Saturday May 25th 10am-11am
• Wednesday May 29th 4pm-5pm
• Sunday June 2nd 2pm – 3pm
• Friday June 7th 10am – 11am
• Tuesday June 11th 2pm – 3pm

Work Parties

Do you wanted to volunteer at one of the Nanaimo Community Gardens Society sites? There are no rental plots, instead we garden together doing whatever is needed depending on the site and the time of year.
At the Beban Learning Garden work parties are held Wednesdays between 10am and 12pm. This garden is located beside the golf course at Beban Park. This site includes a greenhouse, fruit trees and bushes and outdoor gardening beds. During the late winter and early spring, the focus is on maintaining the site and growing seedlings for sale and donating to the community. Later in the season, the greenhouse becomes too hot to work in and the focus is growing outdoors.
The Pine St Garden has work parties on Wednesdays from 11am to 3pm. To participate in these work parties, visit the Pine St Garden behind the Foodshare Centre at 271 Pine St. These work parties continue year round but tasks are very weather dependent. Volunteers have lunch together at 1pm so drop by , bring your lunch and join us for a wonderful meal in the garden.
For May and June there will also be Thursday work parties at the Pine St Garden from noon to 3pm. If these are successful, they may continue through the summer. If you have a group that wishes to attend the garden, this time may be ideal as it is less crowded and we will have a teacher leading the work parties. Please call if this is something that interests you at 250-816-4769.

Growing Food Course

Do you want to grow your own food? Improve your food security? Or make your garden more productive? Then the Growing Organic Food course is for you!
Canadian Organic Growers is offering the Growing Organic Food course. In this 11 week in-class and hands-on course students will learn about soil health, water management, propagating plants, food preservation and more!
Dates: May 30 to July 4
Location: Beban Learning Garden, Beban Park 2300 Bowen Rd. Nanaimo
Registration fee: $845 +tax – COG Members save $50!
To learn more visit https://www.cog.ca/growing-organic-food/ or email education@cog.ca

Fruit Trees Donated by Island Savings

Representatives Jenna Sutherland and Tammie Muir from Island Savings were on hand at a recent tree planting work party at the Beban Learning Gardens to present a cheque to Nanaimo Community Gardens Society. The cheque for $1,500 will to go towards the purchase of fruit trees for the site. The planting of young fruit trees, berry bushes and grape vines  has been planned since the site was first occupied. In the years to come, the fruits will supplement the production of vegetables, herbs and edible flowers on the site to be used in programs and event. Island Savings has been focusing on reducing paper use in their branches and wanted to reinvest those savings in the community with the planting of food producing trees. Thank you Island Savings!

Bee Time!

We took some time recently to take out the old tubes of mason bee cocoons and replace them with fresh, new paper tubes. These tubes are where the new female mason bees will lay their eggs, fully provisioned with pollen. These eggs will hatch and the larvae will eat and grow until they are large enough to spin a cocoon and wait out the cold winter all snug and cozy. In the spring the males hatch first and wait for the females. It is at this time that the mason bees provide their renowned pollinating services to flowering fruit trees. As you see in this picture, one of our youngest volunteers is helping to remove the old mason bee tubes and putting them in a special box where the bees can safely hatch out.  

Happy First Day of Spring 2019!

Beban Learning Gardens will begin selling starterplants on Wed., March 20, directly from ourgreenhouse in Beban Park, beside the golf course. Every Wednesday from 10 to noon, from now until June, you can come and buy vegie, herb, and beneficial and edible flower starter plants, grown as organically as we know how, right on our site. In an effort to help our friends the bees, we are also growing and selling plants that are the favourites of our hard-working pollinators. Lots of gardening advice is available, as well.

 

You are also welcome to browse around our garden and see what we are growing.

 

Plants we will be selling for the rest of March and into early April include:

 

Snap peas, broad beans, sweet peas, thyme, rosemary, mustard, mizuna, strawberries, and lots more!