Derek Powell with a morning harvest of tomatoes and chili peppers from late August. The former proprietor of Barefoot Organics at Haliburton Farm grows 40 different vegetable, fruit and herb plants on a 600 square-foot plot in his front yard. Travis Paterson/News Staff

What a Saanich farmer grows at home

Plenty of Saanich stops on Urban Food-Garden Tour

One of the stops on this year’s Urban Food-Garden Tour on Saturday is at the home of a former farmer, Derek Powell, who’s now maximizing about 600 square feet in front of his residence on Broadway Street in Saanich.

Powell made a living for four years as the proprietor of Barefoot Organics at Haliburton Farm, and it shows, as his plants are tall and full of fruit. He has more than 40 types of herbs, vegetables and fruits growing.

“As I grew into all types of other farming ventures it took away from this [pointing to the garden], which is what I got into growing food for in the first place,” Powell said. “This is where it’s at, everyone should do this.”

Powell, who’s also a local hip hop artist, is now investing in garlic with hopes of cross breeding the bulbs, a new trend in food sales.

The Urban Food-Garden Tour makes 14 stops across Greater Victoria on Saturday. Tickets are $15 and support Haliburton Community Farm’s food box program and rain-collecting roof, the 1-UP Single Parent Resource Centre – summer organic food boxes (delivered to low-income families) – and the Hleketani Community Garden in Limpopo, South Africa.

Nearly 400 people attended the inaugural Urban Food-Garden Tour in 2015. About half of the garden stops on this year’s tour are in Saanich. The tour visits back yards, front yards, allotments and boulevards. Participants get a chance to talk with the gardeners, who are experts in year-round food production, veggies, bees, berries, soil, fowl, design, irrigation and more.

There are also four free educational stops, including the Indigenous gardens in Beacon Hill Park.

Tickets are available at GardenWorks locations, Dig This, Brownpapertickets.com, and at garden entrances on Saturday while supplies last.

reporter@saanichnews.com

 

Derek Powell’s chili peppers in late August. The former proprietor of Barefoot Organics at Haliburton Farm grows 40 different vegetable, fruit and herb plants on more than 600 square-feet in his front yard. Travis Paterson/News Staff