Garden Hours from September 1, 2015:
9:00am -5:00pm daily


Saturday, October 3
9 am to 4 pm
25% off regular prices of all plants
One day only, so come early for best selection

September E-news                                                
Horticulture Centre Of The Pacific                                                                                                                 September 12, 2015
The HCP Team

If you have spent any time at the gardens over the past couple of months, I'm sure you have noticed the flurry of energy. I am very fortunate to have a team the works together in harmony. We all have different strengths and different personalities; our vision and horticulture enthusiasm is what gels us. Let me introduce you to the team.

From Left to Right:
Giles Collins - Assistant Gardener/College Instructor,
Reggie Illy- PHC Office Administrator
Anne Kadwell - that's me...General Manager/College Director
Cheri LeBrun - Volunteer/Community Education Coordinator
Dana Gage - Events/Office Manager
Linda Petite - Head Gardener/College Instructor
Paula McCormick - Youth Coordinator - She is 'way over to the right with the kids
Deborah Donahue - Financial Administrator - She is over to the left in the library
As you see, many of us wear several hats - often many more then two. What makes us unique is that we love what we do and where we do it. We are multi-taskers, always supporting one another to get things done. What I love about my team is their positive attitude and energy. It's all chins up here at the HCP.
We have had a busy summer. Given some small hurdles of change, our 2015 Arts and Music festival was a success! The weather was perfect, many Artists had some of the best sales ever and the Gelato was sold out daily! We have already formed a committee for 2016 and are getting revved up. 2016 will include more artists, more musicians and, yes, more food trucks!
The Couvelier Pavilion is busy with weddings, memorials, and corporate events. Dana Gage has done an amazing job and is already booking well into 2016.  She has been connecting with local groups to promote tourism and events - while building a unique gift shop filled with gardening niche tools and artisanal works.  
The first Annual Volunteer BBQ is Sept 16th. I will be cooking smokies on the BBQ and the HCP staff is serving salads and lemonade. This is going to be a fun social event to say thank you to all of our amazing hard-working volunteers. There will be lots of door prizes and Cheri, our Volunteer Coordinator, will be announcing some exciting Volunteer endeavors for 2016.

The Pacific Horticulture College is preparing for a busy autumn season. We have been working with the City of Victoria to establish a part-time apprenticeship program. This will work in unison with their employees' work schedules while gaining the education they require in the evenings to complete their Red Seal Landscaping Trade Qualification.

Community Education is carrying on and expanding. Cheri has come up with some unique workshops. Please check our website for further details.

Our summer was action packed with full Junior Master Gardener programs and kids' art camps. Many kids are returning because they love it! Paula was also featured on CTV for "Go Play Outside", where she chatted about kids in our HCP gardens and camps.

The Gardens! Oh, the Gardens! What an amazing year for the Gardens! I hear daily about how amazing they look. Fortunately, Linda has been able to have some part-time assistance with watering this year. With the very sunny hot weather this summer it was definitely needed. Linda has some invigorating plans for the summer of 2016. Once in place, we will be sending out articles in the eNews to tell the world!
That's all for now, I could write forever on the ventures and happenings of HCP! But it's good to keep you all on your toes for next month!
Anne Kadwell,
General Manager
September Plant of the Month
By Linda Petite, Head Gardener

Euphorbia 'Diamond Frost'
  • heat and drought tolerant annual
  • showy clouds of airy white flowers until fall frost
  • 12-18 inch mound
  • full-part sun
  • plant alone or in mixed containers or beds
  • deer and rabbit resistant
  • milky sap may cause skin irritation
  • try overwintering in a bright window indoors
      PS:  I LOVE this plant! It is as tough as nails and requires no deadheading and little fertilizer......
What's going on in the Pavilion?

Master Gardener's AGM  -  Sunday, September 27, 2015
(Non BCMG's are welcome to join us!)
Time:          10:00 am - 3:30 pm            
Program:    Coffee at 10am
                      11:00 am - first guest speaker
                        1:00 pm - 1:30 pm  Master Gardeners Association of BC Annual General Meeting
                        1:30 pm - 3:30 pm   Guest speakers
Speakers' Topic:   The Secret Life of Trees - What do they get up to when we aren't looking?
  • Dr. Barbara Hawkins, UVic Centre for Forestry Research
  • Bob Duncan, owner, Fruit Trees and More
  • Noah Alexander, arborist, Township of Esquimalt
Cost:   $25, lunch included      Please register at on or before September 20th
In case you were under the impression that people in such places as Prince Rupert aren't interested in growing flowers, here's a picture to prove the contrary.

Barry Ford photo

Well, what a wonderful week of grey skies and rain we have had. We seemed to get enough to soak the soil properly, and all the plants will profit from that, even if they are past flowering. The newly-absorbed moisture will stimulate their growth through late summer and fall.
Ann's Garden is looking particularly colourful at the moment. The annual plants at the base of the rotunda steps are thriving. In the Winter Garden, the little pink cyclamen are making a lovely carpet. And the Pavilion has gained two new benches with new plantings all around them.
We have recently been enjoying the productivity of all the fruit and vegetable beds. The veggies have been supplying volunteers with a selection of excellent vegetables every week. Linda's farm garden has been equally productive. From the terraced orchard, we have picked buckets and buckets of plums, pears and apples. This productivity has been reflected in the prizes we won at the Saanich Fair!
Of particular note is the transformation of the Cottage Garden. The construction crew have been building a new storage shed and, after they finished, it the students have gone in and given a thorough renovation to the garden on all sides of the Cottage. This opens up the space behind Ann's Garden and encourages us to move ahead with the construction work necessary for the development of the new Hydrangea Garden.
Some weeks ago we received the help of about 50 volunteers for a half day. They were tasked with cutting and clearing the dense band of Pacific willows bordering the lake. Under the direction of Hoke and Linda, they created a whole new network of waterside trails that will become an integral part of the Ethnobotanical Trails.  (See more in "Many hand make light work")
Thank you, everyone, for all your hard work!


This month's Whatzit? was suggested by Head Gardener Linda, but we don't actually have a plant like it in the Gardens at HCP. However, it does grow in Victoria, where this picture was taken. As usual, send your best guess to

Making a Big Impression at the Saanich Fair

The HCP made an impression at the Saanich Fair this year!  The picture below shows some of the prize-winning produce that our members are able to grow. . .and with which they have won prizes at the Fair. Below is a picture of the BIG winner (big but not necessarily beautiful!). Watch for more details of the winners in next month's eNews.

Elizabeth May was at the CTV picnic

Elizabeth May was at the CTV picnic in the Gardens last month. It was a lovely evening with mandolin music, kids' activities, lawn games and 100 people picnicking throughout the gardens.


On the sunny morning of July 23, 2015, the school bus arrived from Dwight School Canada. The young people on board were taking part in the Global Leadership Academy (GLA) which partners with Powerful Youth and Dwight School Canada.
GLA is open to youth ages 14-18 years old from all over the world. They volunteer their time to learn about the importance of service to others - and to the environment - as a good and responsible leaders.
When you have 54 youth and 12 staff members coming to volunteer at the Gardens, you had better make sure there is a worthwhile project! The project we had for them was to clear the trail along the waterfront area between the formal gardens and the Viaduct Flats Conservation Area.
Never before have we had a large enough group of volunteers armed with tools to clear paths through the dense mass of native and invasive plants so that a mower can get into the area.
With 5 teams of students led by 5 leaders from the HCP, we started clearing at the east gate below the great lawn and ended up at the Wapato Patch below "potman" near the water gauge.
The end product is the creation of a recreation maze in the waterfront area that can be maintained with a modest amount of pruning and several hours of mowing each year.
Thank you to all the students and staff from Dwight School Canada, HCP staff(Linda, Paula and Chelsea) and HCP volunteers (Hoke, Sarah, Patty and Chase).
Christmas in Pavilion

Community Education

To register for the following Community Education Programs, please call  250 479 6162 or email

Date: Sep 27, 2015
Willow Chair Workshop

In one day, with Andrew Kent's expert instruction, you can make and take home your own Bent Willow Rustic Chair. This is a great introduction to rustic building. Learn how to make a square frame from pieces of alder and work with different sizes of willow to create a your chair.
All tools will be provided. Work with a friend or alone. Please wear appropriate clothing and bring a lunch.

To sign up:  At the HCP front office, by phone 250-479-6162 , or email

Time:  9:00 am - 5:00 pm
HCP Members $250
Non-Members $275

Date: Saturday Oct 24th & 31st 2015 
Advanced Pruning

If you are a hands-on gardener, hesitant to prune small trees & shrubs for fear of injuring or undesirably altering the appearance, this course with certified arborist Ryan Senechal is designed to give you the skill you need.
In 2 sessions basic pruning techniques will be reviewed and applied to advanced pruning strategies to encourage desirable structure, reduced maintenance and long-term plant health. Your confidence and comfort will grow as you observe and practice field examples of pruning successes and common mistakes.
This course will be outside, so please dress accordingly and bring your secateurs. All other equipment will be supplied. Class size will be limited to ensure individual instruction.

To sign up:  At the HCP front office, by phone 250-479-6162, or email

Time: 9:00 am to 12:00 pm
HCP Members: $90
Non-HCP Members $125

Date: Sunday, October 4th, 2015
Flower Arranging

This workshop will include learning about what flowers you can grow for cutting, care of cut flowers, and making your own beautiful fall arrangement on the spot. Flowers and a lovely container will be provided along with instruction on how to make your own centrepiece.
Eiddwen is a local flower farmer/floral designer. She sells flowers at the Sidney
market and Saanich Peninsula Market and enjoys doing floral design for weddings and special events.

To sign up:  At the HCP front office, by phone 250-479-6162, or email

Time: 10:00 am - 12:00 pm
HCP Members: $85
Non-HCP Members $95

One of our regular volunteers has some Island Grower magazines that she would be happy to give to one (or more) of our members. (Great info in some of those old copies that would be of particular interest to new gardeners in our area.)  They include most of the publications from September 1990 - May 1998.  She also has Gardens West from 1999 -2009. 

Update to last month's volunteer appeal:

Hoke's call for more recruits in the
Ethnobotnay area in last month's eNews omitted the information that volunteers are needed for the
Wednesday sessions that regularly work from 9:00 am to noon. There's a mid morning break for coffee that very few volunteers miss!

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Horticulture Centre of the Pacific | (250) 479-6162 | |
505 Quayle Rd
Victoria BC, V9E 2J7