Gardeners unite

The Wark Street Commons celebrates its fifth yea with a party and a new networking tool for like-minded gardeners.

The Wark Street Commons celebrates its fifth year Sept. 10 with a party and a new networking tool for like-minded gardeners.

“It’s more than an anniversary,” said organizer Jackie Robson. “What we want to do is bring together people in the neighbourhood … (to) share plants, or seeds, or ideas.”

The Hillside-Quadra Urban Farmer initiative has been modeled after a similar group already forging new relationships in Gorge Tillicum.

“We’re even copying their name…  with their permission,” Robson said with a laugh. “It’s a very simple thing but it’s very effective to sit down and discover there’s three or four people on your block that you’ve never met before that are also gardeners. The effect is very enriching.”

The Wark Street Commons, on the corner of Wark and Kings roads, was formed after years of lobbying the city for space.

Unlike an allotment garden, the food grown is free for the picking by anyone who wants.

“Everything at the commons has some edible part to it,” said Robson. “It might be the leaves are edible or the fruit is edible. or some medicinal quality.”

The problem is it’s too popular. Squash and tomatoes are harvested before they’re ripe. For the volunteer gardeners, it’s a call for more space for gardens but the challenge is finding the land. An allotment garden is next on the goal list.

“We’ve been trying to make that happen for many years,” Robson said.

Mark your calendar:

Come for live music, and picnic potluck at 1 p.m. on Sept. 10 to the corner of Wark Street and Kings Road for the Hillside Quadra Farmer Launch Party.