Celebrate and swap

Much more to see than seeds at Seedy Saturday in Qualicum Beach

SEEDY SATURDAY: Brian Cormie shows off some of the cabbages he grew on his farm in Parksville in January. Cormie and thousands of others attended the Seedy Saturday event in Qualicum Beach this past weekend.

SEEDY SATURDAY: Brian Cormie shows off some of the cabbages he grew on his farm in Parksville in January. Cormie and thousands of others attended the Seedy Saturday event in Qualicum Beach this past weekend.

Eager gardeners lined up for half an hour Saturday morning outside the Civic Centre to get their hands on the best seeds on offer.

The reason for the lineup was the popular seed swap event at the core of Seedy Saturday, an event held every spring to celebrate and promote gardening in the area.

Organizer Sandy Glazier said the event was extremely busy, with gardeners snatching up their preferred varieties while they lasted.

“The mornings are usually the busiest because that’s when the best seeds are at the seed swap,” she said.

In all, more than 2,000 people perused the many booths both inside and outside the Civic Centre as they began to think seriously about what they plan to do in the upcoming spring planting season.

This year, Glazier said, heritage varieties of squash,  tomatoes and peas seemed to be the preferred favorites, along with borscht beets.

Despite the crush, Glazier said gardeners seemed to find what they were looking for.

Besides the seed swap, Seedy Saturday saw the Civic Centre crammed with seed vendors, beekeepers and other gardening-related merchants.

This year’s Seedy Saturday included talks by Linda Gilkeson on new pests and diseases, Gord Hutchings on Bumble Bees of B.C. and the Yukon, and Kathy Claxton, with From Plant Pots to Crock Pots.

As well, the Vancouver Island Regional Library had a wide variety of books on hand on subjects on pollination, permaculture and seed saving.

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