With the help of several grants, local businesses, volunteers, fundraisers and community sponsors, the Sun Peaks Community garden now has 20 garden beds ready for next spring.
Catherine Tarasoff, president of the Sun Peaks Community Garden Association, told SPIN even though the gardening season is over, the already-spoken-for garden beds are ready to go for next year.
“Phase one is complete, except for the perimeter fencing, but that will go in before garden season really kicks in,” said Tarasoff.
Volunteers gathered at the corner of Sun Peaks Rd. and Industrial Rd. on Sept. 18 and 19 to assemble and fill the boxes with topsoil. The following weekend, the cedar chips were spread between the boxes and the native plant perennial bed was put together.
“Most of the people that came were those who had claimed a bed, and then there were some people that just wanted to be involved,” said Tarasoff.
“I thought it was great they wanted to get involved in the community and meet people. It was a great way to make new friends while sitting in the garden and working on the project together. It already feels like a community space.”
In phase two, which will start later this fall and be completed early next spring, a rainwater catchment system will be installed as there is no water on site, as well as some additional features.
“There’s room for expansion. We are also hoping to add four more spots, have a picnic table put in under the shade tree and put in a sandbox for kids,” Tarasoff said.
Funding was made possible through the BC Interior Community Foundation grant, the Sun Peaks Community grant, annual plant sale revenue and Vertical Cafe’s ‘cookies for a cause’ campaign. Gilbert Smith Forest Products donated all the lumber, wood chips and garden mats.
“Thanks to everyone’s help and support we were able to get $10,000 in our bank account when we got started. And, hundreds of volunteer hours have made the garden a reality.”