|Growing Gardens, Building Communities|
[to Spring 2005 update]
In November 2003, Cowichan Green Community initiated the idea of starting a community garden, Jubilee Gardens, in Centennial Park in Duncan, B.C. Cowichan Community Land Trust and the Vancouver Foundation backed this dream and made it a reality. The two people who supervise the garden currently are Carol Sim and Christine Pollard. Carol is the "Garden Mentor" who tends the garden and helps the people gardening there. Christine is the Project Manager. Currently, both staff are funded by the Vancouver Foundation but only for a limited time. The jubilee Garden committee feels that through mentoring this initial group of gardeners, these gardeners will pass on their training to new gardeners and garden will be self-sufficient.
Two parts of the Jubilee Gardens are the Communal Beds and the Allotment beds. Dinters Nursery generously supplied plants for both of these beds. When plants come in and can't be planted right away a local neighbour, Sharon Jackson, holds the plants and waters them regularly.The communal beds are worked on by anyone in the community. Any of the food produced by the beds is given to the local Food Bank. Allotment beds, on the other hand, are worked by individuals or groups for a nominal cost of $20.00. A variety of groups, for example, the Cowichan Valley Intercultural and Immigrant Society, the Seniors Advisory Committee, Duncan Manor (Senior Housing), and Community Kitchens are involved.
Some goals of Jubilee Gardens include: Adding 20 beds to their 10 allotment beds, and increasing size of communal beads in order to donate more food to the food bank. They would also like to have everyone who works in the garden, achieve food security.
People in the Valley can help also. If you happen to have any food from fruit trees or gardens, that you are willing to offer, please email us at and we can set up a task force to take this food to the Food Banks.
2005 Spring Greetings from Jubilee Community Garden
We are beginning our 2nd season in Centennial Park in downtown Duncan, a lot earlier than last year. We have 13 returning gardeners and 13 new ones, with more interested. Although it's been rainy and cool, the gardeners have been busy making new beds in both the allotment area and the communal part. An Entrance Garden has been added, across from the shed, with flowering shrubs and perennials brought from our homes. There will be a Children's Garden this year, with pie-shaped beds that radiate out from a big fennel plant. We are busy making more beds for all of our new gardeners and seeding our crops.