What better way to serve up a truly local meal than to grow the ingredients yourself? In our Garden Party series, we’re chatting with Feast On chefs to bring you the ins and outs of starting a kitchen garden. You’ll also get a sneak peek of what they’re growing…coming soon to a restaurant near you!
Find their Feast On profile here!
Tell us about your garden!
The Whitby campus has just over an acre of land dedicated to producing edible crops. We grow a wide range of crops to fit the needs of the horticulture programs, the CFF’s programs and the chefs of Bistro ’67.
The students of the Food and Farming program plan the gardens with the list of desirable crops from the CFF. The students start some seeds in the greenhouse and then move outdoors with the rest of the seeds and plants when the weather allows. They manage the perennial berries plants and orchard as well. We continue to add to our list of foods that we can grow and provide.
What are you planting this year?
Squash, pumpkin and cucumbers; tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and potato; carrots, radish, turnip, corn, beets and so much more. We also have an apple orchard of almost 200 trees across 4 varieties. Hops and more fruit and nut trees will be growing this year as well.
Do you have help?
Ten students will be hired on from our Horticulture and Food and Farming program to assist with the cultivation and harvest of our crops over the summer.
What has been the best part about starting a garden (or really, a farm)?
The best part has been being able to infuse passion in the students for growing and to be able to work in full view of Bistro ’67 knowing that the guests are able to look out and see us growing the food being delivered fresh to their plates.
Any tips for a first time gardener?
Plant what you want to eat, and spend a little time each day in your garden even if it�s only 5 minutes. That�s all it takes.
Answers provided by Shane Jones, Full Time Faculty in Food and Farming at the CFF, Durham College