LMNH Line Dancers Hosted Chinese Lunch

A big, big, BIG thank you to the Little Mountain Neighbourhood House Chinese Line Dancers for hosting an amazing lunch in the garden this past weekend. The food was delicious and much appreciated after our Saturday Work Party! The Line Dancers also dance regularly in the park throughout the summer.. more info on this coming soon! Watch here.

Ukulele Circle in the Garden

On Friday, June 20, Little Mountain Neighbourhood House and Riley Park Community Garden generously sponsored this wonderful event: A Ukulele Sing-A-Long which was held in the centre of the lovely, verdant Riley Park Community Garden.

Most of the uke players were from 411 Senior centre. The other uke players were from Little Mountain and Cedar Cottage Neighbourhood Houses along with a few invited guests. Overall, it was even better than we had hoped for... over 35 folks playing, singing, and sharing snacks together.

Our sincere appreciation and thanks go to Joanne McKinnon, Annie Wu and the staff at Riley Park Community Garden and Little Mountain Neighbourhood House for helping make this a wonderful way to end our term.

-Jane Belanger

Do you play ukulele? We hope to host more of these jam sessions throughout the summer, so stay tuned (pun intended).

Butterflyway Project in the Garden

The Butterflyway Project Event was a great hit in the garden this past Saturday. Many came out to learn about the different pollinators in the garden and our native butterflies, while learning how to help them thrive! Scroll through the photos to see how much fun we had in the garden!

Pollinator Week was last week, but this doesn’t mean you still can’t help out! The BIMBY (Butterflies In My Backyard) Project is a citizen scientist component of the Butterflyway Project, hosted by the David Suzuki Foundation. Volunteer Butterflyway Rangers in Vancouver, Richmond and the District of North Vancouver, will take photos of local butterflies in 2019. Our goal is to help identify B.C. butterflies and enrich our knowledge of how to help butterflies find food and shelter.

What's On In The Garden: Friday June 21st

Summer is here! We are pleased to announce that the 3rd Annual Riley Park Community Garden Summer Solstice will be held this Friday from 7:30-9:30pm in the garden. It will be an evening of yummy snacks, music, and celebrating. Everyone is welcome!

Wondering what else is going on in the garden this weekend? Check out the Events Calendar here

Mayan Three Sisters Garden Bed

On May 29, we welcomed Mayan Elder and UBC Sociologist, Lix Lopez to the garden, as he led us in planting corn and beans in the Three Sisters Bed at the Riley Park Community Garden. 

Lopez first shared the story of how corn was discovered by the Mayans (Click link for more details on this story), which was followed by a blessing of the seeds. The seeds were planted around the giant celery from last year that is currently flowering. The celery stock will be used as a natural pole for the climbing beans, and its roots for stabilization and nutrients.

We are excited to introduce a new variety of corn to the garden and look forward to seeing the progress of this bed throughout the summer. Thank you Lix for an evening in the garden, and thank you for everyone who attended this event!

We will keep you informed of upcoming planting sessions with Lix and also SAVE THE DATE for our Mayan Day in the Garden – September 21 for our  Mayan Three Sisters Lunch and Mayan Workshop. This is a partnership with the UBC Mayan Garden in Exile project and a great opportunity to learn more about the Mayan Culture and Traditions.

Microbe Inoculation Event in Riley Park

By Dr. Art Bomke, Professor Emeritus, UBC

On Saturday May 18 th , Riley Park Community Gardeners, guests and representatives from the BC Mycological Society launched an interesting demonstration/education project focused on fungi, bacteria and their effects on higher plants. Additionally, a small log was inoculated with spores of a saprophytic fungus that produces edible fruiting bodies, otherwise known as mushrooms. This latter project will take some time to develop and will be available to observe, likely nestled within the “Food Forest” area of the garden.

Plant – Microbe interactions: All plants exist in a range of relationships with soil microorganisms and good management strives to create healthy soils with a biodiverse array of beneficial microbes. The SPEC (Society Promoting Environmental Conservation) Bean bed is the site of a comparison of two methods of inoculating plant seeds with microorganisms to improve plant vigour, nutrient uptake and fixation of atmospheric nitrogen. The efficacy of inoculating plant seeds is partially dependent on the fertility of the soil and can either show a marked improvement or no effect. What will we observe in our garden?

The Bean plot was divided into four segments with the treatments being a 1) control with no inoculation, 2) addition of a mycorrhizae mix (containing a range of fungi and bacteria), 3) nitrogen-fixing bacteria and a combination of treatments 2 and 3.

Gardeners and visitors will be able to observe over the June and July to see if the treatments have had any visual effects. We will also measure vegetative growth, bean yields and root effects.

Veggie Face and Sign Painting with SACY

The SACY (Supporting and Connecting Youth) group had lots of fun painting the garden signs last Thursday and digging up the two areas where the ground cover was planted (where the blue berries will be going plus part of one of the veg beds). They completed painting the new veggie signs for the common areas we are planting. Lots of fun was had drawing veggie faces. Thank you to Anya, varouj and Susan for making this happen.

Renewable Energy Demonstration on the Shed

Working with SPEC and their Renewable Energy team, we have a solar panel and wind turbine on the shed. On the ‘information board’ to the right side of the door, are the 4x volt/amp/watt meters for each of the energy sources. The UBC Environment Studies students we are working with this year will be putting up an information poster. There is more to come to support our garden including rainwater collection and an irrigation system for the espalier orchard.

Early Pollinators Activity In the Garden

Did you know that the Garden’s border is composed of pollinator friendly plants and most perennial plants, trees and shrubs in the garden were chosen because they provide pollen and nectar for native bees and other pollinators? The biodiversity of these plants supports a large number of species of native pollinators from early spring to fall. This bee was seen recently in on the Pulmonaria “Mrs Moon” in our woodland area. Our Madame Beespeaker, Lori tells us that this is a queen Vosnesenskii  Bumble Bee (also known as yellow-faced bumble bee). When you visit the garden, what other pollinators do you see?

We will be hosting Lori Weidenhammer, Madame Beespeaker in our garden as she leads us on a Pollinator Walk and artful mapping. She will share with us the importance of bees for food production and the types of plants that support our bees. Check our event calendar for more information and be sure to subscribe to our newsletter and like/follow us on Facebook.

Apple Festival in Riley Park Community Garden!

Saturday, October 20. 12:30-3pm.

Taste, Show and Tell: 12 types of apples to sample. Stay for lunch featuring apples and dishes from the various cultural groups we have in the community and in the garden. Try your hand at apple cider pressing.

Everyone is welcome! Join us in the Garden (30th/Ontario) beside the Riley Park Farmers Market.