All native potager? How cool is that?

VIU Horticulture 6

Fun afternoon on site today as our integrated and holistic approach to the project all came into play with the start of a new student project. VIU Horticulture Instructor,  Laura-Jean Kelly brought her HORT 131T Landscape Design Techniques class out for the start of their annual juried design project.

In the above photo, Laura-Jean gives the class their assignment in our first real class use of the unfinished outdoor classroom – which got rave reviews as an inspired teaching area.

In this course, students divide into groups and develop landscape plans and investigate the practical application of plants and various hard landscape applications commonly used in residential landscaping. In this real world exercise, the students will be working within our Landscape Architect, Victoria Drakeford’s site plan to design two special areas which she is graciously turning over for student input. Their client for this exercise? The Centre for Shellfish Research (us) and the Culinary Institute of Vancouver Island.

Inspired by Chef Craig Rogers (and colleagues) expertise in the culinary use of local native plants,  the desire to demonstrate the use of native plants for sustainable landscaping,  and create learning opportunities on site – Laura-Jean’s group will submit designs for an entrance/reception area including a  “native plant Potager”.    A Potager is a classic ornamental kitchen garden, that dates back to the monasteries of medieval France.  This group of VIU Horticulture students will be giving this a very west coast sustainability twist with a nod to traditional First Nations use by rethinking the Potager with local species that can be used for true locavore culinary uses.  How cool is that?

After site orientation today the class will now be dividing into groups and in December will make formal presentations back to a “client” jury.  We’ll post the results on the blog.  Then next spring we’ll build the garden leaving yet another student legacy on the site.  We can’t wait to see what they come up with. If you are interested in helping to sponsor this project please see information on right sidebar of the blog.


VIU Horticulture 4

Landscape Architect Victoria Drakeford gives an overview of her design approach for the site. She was joined by Chef Debbie Shore who discussed the culinary aspect of the project and Brian Kingzett who gave an overview of the entire Field Station and its goals.

Landscape master plans 100812

Victoria’s master Plan lays out our vision for how we will develop the site over time. It is based on the use of all native plants, reduction in the requirement for irrigation, restoration of riparian areas, demonstration of the use of Native plants for landscaping, native food plants and the use of the entire site for educational and interpretative purposes. Click to download a PDF of the full plan.

VIU Horticulture 3

The class investigates the area they will be responsible for, the Potager will be in the foreground of the photo and the entrance/arrival area right were the container is sitting now.


One Response to “All native potager? How cool is that?”

  1. Results of 2010 Horticulture Design Competition « VIU Deep Bay Marine Field Station Updates Says:

    […] The results are in! …  Last fall,  VIU Horticulture Instructor,  Laura-Jean Kelly brought her HORT 131T Landscape Design Techniques class out for the start of their annual juried design project.  See original post here. […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: