Spring Gillard

Farming around in Kelowna

A couple years ago I was planning an Okanagan farm tour that never actually happened. The full, mystifying, political and perhaps even mystical story is in my new book. During that time, I connected with Lisa McIntosh from Urban Harvest, a produce delivery company. She recommended some great places to see in Kelowna. So if […]

A Chicken in Every Garage

Now that the City of Vancouver is moving ahead with allowing chickens in backyards, I thought it would be fun to revisit the chapter on chickens from my last book. My book was published in 2003. It’s amazing to see how much has changed and how far we’ve come! And not just with chickens, but […]

Earth Day with Evergreen

I used to work with the BC branch of Evergreen. A national group that focuses on greening school grounds, preserving and restoring nature in the city. I helped to promote their Lawn and Garden Smart Program. Basically a garden consultation service where a horticultural adviser makes a house call, takes a look at your yard […]

Homelessness At the Root of Hunger

I have moved around a lot. From time to time I have been homeless – “ but only in the sense that I was in transition, had not yet rented an apartment and was bouncing from friend to friend, sleeping on a couch here, a floor there. Still it was always a bit unsettling not […]

Jane’s Walk

Jane Jacobs, the much loved and lauded urban planner and community activist died in 2006. Jacobs believed that in order to truly know your own city, “you have to get out and walk”. In her honour, a group of friends and colleagues from Toronto organized the first Jane’s Walk in May of 2007. This year […]

Bike the Blossoms

Last year I took part in Bike the Blossoms, an event put on for the past two years by Slow Food Vancouver and the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival. There were 2000 cyclists on the streets of Vancouver that day. We ruled the road. I have never felt so safe in traffic. The cars just parted […]

Food Politics: A Bite Size Course

I’m offering my course over one weekend now.

Eating is a political act. Find out how the food on your plate can affect a farmer half a world away. Through field trips, guest speakers, classroom presentations and discussions, students will explore the entire food system from tabletop to ground and back again.

Covers local food […]

Vista D’Oro Farm

I interviewed several “middle path” farmers for my new book. Middle path to me means, farming as naturally as possible. Vista D’Oro Farm in Langley, BC is one of them; they are organic, but not certified. They grow heirloom tomatoes, some herbs in their little greenhouse and a variety of fruits. They also have a […]

The Politics of Fruit

I have been editing the fruit chapter of my book. It looks at the politics of fruit through the banana lens. The banana is perhaps the most political fruit of all with a long line of corporate imperialists peeling off the profits. But the banana industry cannot lay claim to all the rotten apples. There […]