(As seen in the July 21 issue of the Saanich News.)
It’s the middle of berry season and Rob Galey and his team are hard at work at Galey Farms at 4150 Blenkinsop Rd.
Right now, they are focused on getting fresh strawberries, blueberries and raspberries picked and ready for you to come and get them.
“We plant our crops so that we will always have fresh berries available right up until the first or second frost of the year,” said Galey. “We have about 35 acres here planted with berries, carrots, potatoes, corn, pumpkins and a large variety of squash.”
They also have several Victoria and Blenkinsop Valley locations where they grow thousands of tons of produce for the folks on Vancouver Island.
You can get your fresh produce directly from the Galey Market until Oct. 31 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Right now, there’s lots of yummy berries, fresh fruit and in-season vegetables. Their produce tastes so good, in part due to the rich compost they use.
They also carry Babe’s honey, produced from hives on the property.
“It’s a win-win situation,” said Galey. “Our berries need the bees, and the bees need the berries.”
Galey started building a railway, the Old West Town, complete with haunted houses, back in 2000. Today, his train carries 150 people on a 1.6 km journey through the town, past a pirate ship and of course, through the prehistoric times area with dinosaurs and cavemen, and of course, the valley’s iconic re-creation of the Egyptian Sphinx. Almost everything in this animated land moves. As for the haunted houses, there are three of them: one for younger children, one for teens and one for adults.
The farm’s attractions are open to the public only in October. You can tour the farm and the Old West Town, visit the petting farm, take a hay ride and a train ride. There’s a corn maze too!
Until then, there’s lots of fresh goodness just waiting for you to take home.
By Darcy Nybo
This quick and easy salad is the perfect companion for any barbeque or summer picnic.
- 1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 3 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
- 10-12 raspberries
- freshly ground pepper
- salt to taste
- Emulsify in a blender until smooth
- 1- 1.5 cups fresh baby greens (5-7 oz.)
- ½ cup raspberries
- ½ cup sliced strawberries
- ½ cup blackberries (or blueberries)
- ½ cup of soft goat cheese
- handful of nuts (pecan, walnut, cashew)
Toss with raspberry vinaigrette and serve. You can store any leftover dressing in the fridge for up to a week.