This Nanoose Bay garden really rocks

Crevice garden a different kind of way to beautify your property

Esteemed rock garden expert Paul Spriggs will be in Nanoose Bay Oct. 31.

Esteemed rock garden expert Paul Spriggs will be in Nanoose Bay Oct. 31.

An extraordinary garden is taking shape in Nanoose Bay and a great opportunity exists on Monday for garden clubs and landscapers alike interested in learning how to build a crevice garden.

Crevices are those intriguing gaps between rocks where plants can grow while seeming to defy all odds. Construction of a crevice garden will begin in earnest Mon., Oct. 31 at Esywin’s Alpine & Rock Garden at Nanoose Place.

The memorial garden was created in 2009 for Eswyn Lyster by members the Alpine and Rock Garden, part of the Qualicum Beach Garden Club.

Next to Beacon Hill Park, the Nanoose Place garden is the only public alpine garden on the Island and now the memorial garden will be expanded.

Starting at 8 a.m. work on a vertical rock garden will begin with Paul Spriggs, leading the way. His expertise comes from training in the Czech Republic with world experts and putting his knowledge and experience into practice.

Alpines and other rock garden plants are ideally suited to grow in these spaces as they often do in nature and Esywn’s garden has no shortage of plant treasures to tuck into the rocks.

Elaine Bohm of the Qualicum Beach Garden Club said Lyster collected hundreds of alpine plants from around the world.  Those plants many of them rare, were grown from seed by Lyster. They were removed from her Qualicum Beach garden when she died in 2009 and transplanted.

Bohm said her friend’s alpine plant collection was incredible and Lyster’s living memorial is a magnificent tribute to the industrious woman who exported seeds and plants from all parts of the world including Russia and Czechoslovakia.

She said the alpine plant enthusiast had always wanted Spriggs to do a crevice garden on her property and now her friends wishes will be met.

“We kind of think she is looking down on us,” said Bohm.

She said Fairwinds is donating the granite for the job and there are about 200 rocks to be lined up.

The jagged slices of rock will be stacked with precision, leaving gaps filled with sand. The effect is like looking down on the Alps from a plane.

Bohm said they are fortunate to have such an esteemed rock garden expert in town and it will provide an excellent opportunity for avid gardeners to learn the art form.

The gardeners will be starting at 8 a.m. Mon., Oct. 31 at 2925 Northwest Bay Road in Nanoose Bay.