Food First Chemainus has come a long way in a short time.
The group was formed in October of last year for people who are interested in building community with the production and sharing of small-scale garden produce through public herb and community gardens, and yard share and fruit tree programs.
“The first official meeting was August (2021) where three of us showed up,” noted Nuria Sanchez, one of the founding members.
There are now seven active members and the interest is growing, so to speak, all the time with more newcomers sure to join the group in due time.
A community garden set up behind the Chemainus United Church has been a great success.
“It ran all summer,” said Sanchez. “Cowichan Neighbourhood House, they use the herbs that are in there.”
The last two garden boxes were put on July 6. There are now a total of 11 boxes, with each one donated by a business or service club.
A sign was just erected there in early November with the garden in memory of Lynn Morrison.
The group remains active throughout the year to maintain the beds.
“We replenish it,” said Sanchez. “We’re obviously turning the beds over.
“Not much grows in the winter, but the herbs are still going to be there. We’ll be growing seedlings probably in February to hopefully be ready to put in the raised beds by spring.”
The surface has only been scratched for Food First Chemainus to expand its horizons.
“We really want people this year to participate in our yard share program,” added Sanchez.
That would involve making yard space available for people who want to garden or for those interested in gardening who don’t have land of their own.
The group is also anxious to hear from anyone who may have plants to donate or can drop them off.
And new members are always welcome. “The more, the merrier,” said Sanchez.