It may be safe to say that our winter season is over, as confirmed by those four-legged forecasters last month, and by that lovely warm breeze we’ve felt outside lately. That means it’s time to get your garden in order!

Whether you have a plot in a community garden, a full-scale backyard to the envy of all your Kits neighbours, or even if you have just a few pots on your balcony, here are 3 tips to help you get started with your gardening.

1. Start Over

Last year’s dry weather conditions and pesky but necessary water restrictions have done a number on many of our front yards. Not to mention those lawn-selective chafer beetle larvae that are apparently irresistible to crows, raccoons, and skunks. Perhaps it’s time to rethink that green space and forego the grass altogether. Eco-friendly, time-saving alternatives include a dry garden consisting of zen-positioned rocks with drought-tolerant plants, or how about a mini-meadow of white clover and native wildflowers?

2. Go Local

In BC there are quite a few growers that save and sell organic, heirloom, and non GMO vegetable seeds. Two great ones to order from are West Coast Seeds and Salt Spring Seeds, both of which you can purchase at Gandy’s Home Hardware on West 4th Ave and Hunters Garden Centre on West Broadway as well. The UBC Botanical Garden and VanDusen Botanical Garden also sell seeds. Some easy veggies to plant direct outside right now are kale, lettuce, potatoes, beets, radishes, carrots, and spinach.

3. DIY

Here’s yet another way to put those empty glass jars to good use – they make for great window sill pots. Pasta, jam, and pickle jars work well for this. Fill the bottom quarter with pebbles (makes them look good too), add your soil to the next two quarters, sprinkle some herb seeds (basil, chives, parsley, etc.) and top up lightly with a bit more soil. Put them on a warm, sunny windowsill and keep relatively moist.

Last modified: March 18, 2017

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