Spring Gillard

Moon Festival

Renfrew Ravine is one of Vancouver’s lush local secrets. If you’ve never walked the forested ravine in the middle of the city, you are missing out. And it’s not just the forest in the city that is a surprise, but the artwork you find along the way. There’s even a labyrinth. I […]

Food Gardening at Canwest

Canwest, the annual BC Landscape and Nursery Association show always has a great line-up of guest speakers and tours. Not to be missed in the pre-show clinics is Green Roofs & Living Walls 101 with a roster of 12 industry leaders, most notably local expert, Randy Sharp of Sharp and Diamond. There […]

Dear Greyhound…

I took the bus from Vancouver to Westbank a couple weeks ago. We pulled into Merritt at 1:35 pm and the driver told us we could take a twenty minute break. At 1:55 pm we were back on the bus and he announced that we would be waiting another fifteen minutes for […]

Too Many Papas

I’ve just returned from the Okanagan and my fridge is bursting with fresh local fruit and vegetables. Plus the beans at my community garden, barely producing when I left, are now growing at warp speed. I need to act fast so my compost bin doesn’t wind up with the goods. I made […]

Corn Dash

In 2003, my first book hit the shelves and City Farmer turned 25. We threw a big party at the garden. The celebration lasted all weekend with various anniversary events plus a book launch. On the Saturday evening we had a corn roast in the garden’s cob oven. My parents picked up […]

Lesson Plans


I took the Instructional Skills Workshop (ISW) at UBC last weekend. The course, hosted by the Centre for Teaching, Learning and Technology (CTLT), is recognized by most academic institutions and required for many Teaching Certificate programs, including UBC, SFU and Royal Roads. It was intense and jam-packed with useful learner-centred teaching […]


I was running along Kits Beach on the weekend when I spotted a well built specimen in my pathway. No it’s not what you’re thinking, it was a new recycling bin. I saw the Encorp Pacific logo and thought hmmm, the City must be partnering with the beverage recycling company. After a […]

Sustainability in Tough Times


I’m beginning to plan for this year’s applied sustainability course at Simon Fraser University (SFU). It’s essentially a two day tour where we go out and look at real life sustainability in action. Each year varies, but Olympic Village is always featured. The photo above shows the district energy system “smokestacks” […]

Return to Denman

I was visiting a friend on Denman Island this week, part of the northern Gulf Island chain. The last time I was there was June of 1997 when some of us garden gals went over for the home and garden tour. It was the best garden tour I’ve ever been on, partly […]

The Glasgow Guy

My friend Linda invited me to join her and a friend for a little birthday dessert at Casa Gelato last week. She also asked her house guest along, a young guy from Glasgow. He’s holidaying here before embarking on a Masters in Educational Psychology back home. A funny coincidence, given that Linda […]