ALM Organic Farm along Otter Point Road has been producing organic produce for 27 years.

Growing your own food the organic way

For 100 years, people have been getting their hands in the dirt at the farm that was once the Scarf house. Now called ALM Organic Farm.

For 100 years, people have been getting their hands in the dirt at the farm that was once the Scarf house. Now called ALM Organic Farm, the 15 acres is home to a group of farmers who till the land and share a passion for all things organic.

Mary Alice and Jan Johnston have owned ALM since 1986 and Mary Alice is a stalwart farmer well known in the community for sharing the knowledge she has gained over the years.

On the five arable acres used for food production, Johnston and her farming partner Marika Nagasaka welcome young farmers who want to glean knowledge from them and the others who share the land on Otter Point Road.

Each year they take on a couple of new apprentices and guide them in the basics of starting their own organic farms. The back-to-the-land movement, started in the 1960s by young folks who wanted a rural lifestyle, is still evident in the hearts and minds of those who believe in growing their own food.

The folks at ALM want to share their knowledge with the greater community and they are offering a series of workshops throughout the spring and summer.

“We’ve been doing this for awhile, but held off for a couple of years,” said Johnston, who has been teaching organic gardening at Camosun College for the past 15 years.

“Part of it is getting instruction from someone who has been doing this a long time,” said Johnston. “How it’s done effectively and the equipment to use, etc.”

She said people often struggle with a planting calendar and Nagaska is very adept at teaching people about this aspect of gardening. A planting calendar will allow growers to push planting dates in the spring and fall to extend the harvest and plan succession sowing for continual and extended harvest of certain vegetables. The first workshop on this aspect was on Feb. 27 and will be offered again on Saturday, March 16 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

She mentioned Jordan who is really good with pruning and perennials, such as asparagus, raspberries, fruit trees.

Other topics include: Growing Amazing Tomatoes (March 30), Introduction to Perennial Foods, (April 13), Plant Propagation (April 20), the Winter Garden (June 8) and Seed Saving (Sept. 14). Seed saving is of particular interest these days when GM foods are becoming increasingly evident in the grocery stores and there is a risk of losing heritage and organic seeds.

Most of the workshops take place during the day and cost between $30 and $55, space is limited. You also have the option of enjoying an organic farm lunch at each of the workshops.

On April 27, ALM will hold their third annual Plant and Seed Sale and also during the annual Farm & Garden Tour in August.

For more information on the farm, the people and the workshops go to: www.almfarms.org; email to: info@almfarms.org or telephone 250-642-3671.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

CRD wants closer relations with First Nations

Committee recommends the CRD board open the door to representation

Police watchdog looking for witnesses to arrests in Victoria’s inner harbour

One male left injured after arrests near Red Fish Blue Fish

Speaker ‘will not tolerate illegal activity’ on B.C. legislature grounds, says chief of staff

Chief of staff to the B.C. speaker Alan Mullen says situation with demonstrators appears ‘fluid’

Saanich Peninsula Branch of Royal Canadian Legion leaves North Saanich after 90 years

Branch will temporarily operate out of SHOAL Centre for Seniors

Clothing, jewelry, purses: RCMP ask court about disposal of evidence in Robert Pickton case

Pickton was sentenced to life with no chance of parole for 25 years for the murders of six women

Wet’suwet’en herreditary chiefs meet with provincial, federal ministers

Neither party speaking on the groundwork laid for tomorrow’s talks

MPs to examine privacy implications of facial-recognition technology used by RCMP

The MPs will look at how the technology affects the privacy, security and safety of children

Dates back to 2009: Calgary police lay charges in fraud involving semi-trucks

Three people from Calgary are facing charges that include fraud over $5,000

Comox 442 Squadron carries out two sea rescue missions north of Vancouver Island

Submitted by Lt. Alexandra Hejduk Special to Black Press 442 Transport and… Continue reading

Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs optimistic ahead of talks with feds, province

Discussions with provincial and federal governments expected to start later today

‘The project is proceeding’: Horgan resolute in support of northern B.C. pipeline

B.C. premier speaks as talks scheduled with Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs

BREAKING: Kelowna RCMP to further investigate 12 sexual assault cases, create sexual assault unit

Recommendations come five months after it was revealed 40% of sexual assaults were deemed ‘unfounded’

Most Read