Two workshops for folks who grow food

Botanical Garden

June 12, 2014 03:49 PM

Tuesday, June 17, at 7 p.m., the master gardeners will present an illustrated, practical talk about a pest newly-arrived on the Sunshine Coast and threatening fruits and berries. Wednesday evening, June 18, at 7 pm, learn the best ways to reap fresh garden vegetables through much of the winter, including timing and starting winter vegetables now. Both workshops are at the Sunshine Coast Botanical Garden, 5941 Mason Road. These topics are of interest to both home gardeners and market growers.

Spotted wing drosophila is the new fruit fly, freshly arrived here on the Coast. It lays its eggs while the fruit is forming, causing it to rot before it can be harvested. Even wild salal, huckleberries and blackberries may be affected if not discouraged now. This fruit fly hosts on all soft-skinned fruit and has many breeding cycles per season so is very invasive. Unlike the fruit fly familiar to summer kitchens and composts, it attacks before the fruit is even picked. Powell River master gardener Jo Canning will be the instructor Tuesday, and this free workshop is sponsored by Sunshine Coast Regional District.

Harvesting fresh greens and other vegetables can go on into November, and intermittently during the winter and early spring, adding flavour and nutrition to your table and saving you money.

Instructor Harry Hill has been doing this in his home garden for years. But you’ll need to get cracking soon to have your longest harvest ever. Radishes, broad beans, broccoli, cauliflower, leeks, kale and others can be yours when the weather is cool and wet! This workshop is by donation, $10 suggested.

Sunshine Coast Credit Union generously supports the Sunshine Coast Botanical Garden. The Garden’s summer hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday to Wednesday, closed Thursday. Members enjoy early notice of the many events, discounts and unlimited free visits.

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