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Friday, March 5, 2010

A Global Garden

Well it is almost time to start sprouting the RoofTop Garden at the Hotel. So I would like to put out a challenge to everyone!! Since the Blog is getting hits from all over the Planet...I would like the Garden to be Global.

 So I'm curious to see if anyone...anywhere on the planet wants to send some seeds for us to grow. All of the product will be used in our Restaurant...with the overflow (if any...depending on my gardening skills) will go to the local Community Soup Kitchen. We are looking for Herb/Spice and Vegetable seeds..but if you have an interesting Fruit that will grow and mature quickly that works too.

Yesterday our Chef signed the contract with our only Local provide us with fresh Local Vegetables this coming Season. The RoofTop garden is meant to provide all the things that this supplier will not be growing. The familiar and the not so familiar.

 Our climate during the summer is short...I will start sprouting everything in the next month. During the summer we recieve sunlight till 11pm at long days. Which should be excellent for plants. The Garden is going to be sustainable...built out of old buckets. I am going to build an Eco-Garden that is self watering (thru a siphoning tube system) and self fertilizing. With the odd bucket of Poo Water (rotting local foliage in water) to help with growth. It will be totally Organic...even the soil will be brought in (ours contains Oil). So I would prefer the seeds didn't come from plants that have been sprayed with pesticides or fed with chemicals. The Garden will basically be Pest Free because it's going to be built ontop of the no lil critters eating my labors of love. If your item needs more heat...I will tent the item to HotBox it. Be sure to send growing instructions on how YOU care for item during it's growth...along with any special tips your Mother or Grandmother gave you about it. A recipe that you use the item in would be quite excellent also.

 So my goal is to see what arrives in the mail and try growing experiment. Herbs and Veggies of all kinds should thrive....they soil will be a foot and a half in dont send anything that needs more room to grow. It will be very cool seeing what arrives from other countries. Enclose your favorite recipe for the seeds that you are sending. At the end of the season I will let alot of the plants go to seed...and mail back a variety of everything that was grown to anyone that sent seeds. A seed exchange of a sorts..haha. I would also be willing to pay any reasonable mailing costs if you like.

 I am looking for things that you wouldn't normally find in stores or from suppliers. Something truly local in your region of the World. The odder the better.

 As things mature I will snap pictures of my triumphs and my dismal  failures..a running post to keep everyone up to date. I will also showcase your recipe on the Blog.

 Anyone that is interested in the idea can email me at : and I will send you a mailing address.

 Way excited to get this started...Spring is starting....time for FRESH FOOD!!!!


  1. I sent you Red Hopi amaranth, cayenne and assorted North Bay peppers, Greek leek via a Toronto garden, parsley from Noelville, cranberry beans from Powassan and seeds from almost wild flowers indigenous to the farm.... some edible. Fun project!!

  2. what about some seeds from BC *wink wink*

  3. Ken, this is such an amazing idea. Oh how I wish I had local seeds to contribute to your rooftop garden (sigh). I am really going to enjoy your future posts.

    I am such an avid believer in sustainble farming and eating locally. Your idea to share seeds, really brings people together, builds relationships and increases awareness. Thanks!

  4. Thanks for being the "first" Nancy! (Nancy is a Nutritionist...Chef...College Prof...and also the person that convinced me I should start a blog...she needs way more than just Thanks!!)
    Anonymous...unless your talking about Heirloom Tomatoes...NO!
    Velva...if you dont have seeds...someone you know does, be it neighbour, lover, or just the towns green thumb...hehe

  5. I'll keep an eye out for anything interesting as the garden centres are now gearing up for the season. Not sure how exotic or unique the selection is in Ontario but I do know some carry some organic/pesticide free seeds. Just curious, does the restaurant there compost leftover or spoiled food/produce etc..? I hear it makes great fertilizer! This is a very cool project, sounds like you're keeping busy, all the best with it and may mother nature be on your side with just the right amount of sunshine, rain and warmth :)

  6. During the summer I will compost some of past hotel collected it all to be fed to the local pigs. There are more challenges up here due to the fact we have no farms...besides oil.It would end up being a stinky fruit fly infested transportation nightmare up here.

  7. We'll get to work on this. Won't be driving south until April 1 but we'll keep our eyes and ears open for ideas.

  8. I think it's a great idea, Ken. I have been wanting to do something similar for years but my job requirements didn't allow me to be in one place long enough to tend to a garden. That is about to change in another month when I finally get to plant roots in Calgary. A garden will be in the top 5 things to do then.

    You should set up a webcam pointed at your garden and link it to your site. That way we can all observe its progress in real time. I remember a few years ago someone had a webcam pointed at their fish tank. The feed got like a million hits or so.

    Looking forward to seeing your garden grow,


    P.S. Great blog you have here!