Autumn at the Dunbar Garden

Hello fellow gardeners,

Fall is closing in on us, despite the feeling that summer will go on forever. The days are getting shorter, the sun is a little less smouldering, and there's a nip to the air at night that presages frost. In short, harvest time is here.

Here are a few garden updates for September:


Metro Vancouver is still experiencing drought conditions, so Stage 3 water restrictions are still in place. We are (hopefully) due for some autumn rain, but in the mean time, let's continue to be conservative with our water use at the garden. Any leaking hoses or busted nozzles, don't hesitate to get in touch with me ASAP.


If you're new to the garden, or have just cleared up space in your beds, there are still a few options for late-summer/early fall crops. Two delicious options with the quickest turn-around are radishes and corn salad (also known as mache) which can be direct-seeded. Endives (or radicchio) can also be direct-seeded in September. It's still a little early for garlic, which is an over-winter crop, but you can certainly start reserving space in your beds for bulbs. Figaro's Garden ( sells excellent organic garlic stock, and you can also buy heads directly from a farmers' market.


We will be providing mulch (likely leaves) around the middle of October for you to use to cover your beds in preparation for winter. The first frost in Vancouver is slated for November 5th, according to the Old Farmer's Almanac, so we will be packing up the hoses and shutting off the water around this time to avoid frozen pipes.

As always, the garden remains open year-round for those gardeners wishing to tend their crops through the winter.


It may seem self-evident, but don't forget to pick the food you've grown! Each fall we witness a lot of unpicked beds; if you can't keep up with your harvest, why not give some veggies to a friend or neighbour?


The Vancouver Urban Farming Society is hosting a cover cropping workshop on Wednesday, September 9th in Mount Pleasant, starting at 4:30pm. If you're interested, check out their website ( .


Now is a great time to think about harvesting seeds from your plants to store over winter and plant again in the spring. Here's a great website ( that offers a basic how-to for a bunch of different vegetable plants. Tomatoes, however, may be the most fun––check out this video!

See you in sweaters,


Garden Manager

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