CLARENVILLE, N.L. — Thanks to the efforts of the Clarenville Girl Guides and Rotary, the Clarenville Farm and Market will soon be ripe with an “Edible Landscape”, having planted dozens of apple trees at the site.
The idea stemmed from the TD Friends of the Environment Foundation, which gives up to 90 tree planting grants, ranging from $500-$2,500, including all the supplies needed to plant trees in the community. The Clarenville group received $1,500.
In an effort not only to make communities more green and livable, the initiative also helps teach young girls in the Guiding movement about growing and the environment.
They even went to Terra Nova National Park to do some research first hand.
While the Rotary Club and the Farm and Market board partnered in the effort, the Town of Clarenville also provided much of the tools, like shovels and equipment.
The Rotary Club provided much of the supplies, while Sexton’s Lumber donated mulch for the project.
Through a lot of planning, they decided on planting apple trees — in line with the Farm and Market’s plan for an “Edible Landscape.”
On Saturday, June 16 Guides of all ages, along with the Rotary, were hard at work planting.
Ross Travers, Farm and Market board member and horticultural expert, provided direction throughout the planting.
Travers told The Packet the idea is to use plants in the “Edible Landscape” that will look nice but also yield food.
“Apple trees are very ornamental as well,” said Travers. “When they’re in bloom and when they have the fruit and that sort of thing. So it’s always a good idea to have something that’s attractive as well as provide some fruit.”
He says they have certain guidelines to abide by to ensure the trees grow.
“First and foremost, you have to have an area with good drainage, in other words no water lodges in the wintertime.
“The other important thing is to neutralize the acidity in the soil with lime. It has to be mixed with the soil and you have to have organic matter in the form of peat or whatever. Then, also you need the nutrients in the form of fertilizer or some source of compost.”
Farm and Market vice-chairwoman Kathryn Small told The Packet this is the first step in the overall plan for the “Edible Landscape.”
“We’re so thrilled to have the Guides and Rotarians here doing this project, it’s a very, very valuable project,” Small said. “This is social enterprise at work, which is what the Farm and Market is all about.”
She says this project means recognizing how and where our food comes from is important.
The Farm and Market is holding their grand opening this weekend, Saturday, June 23, unveiling their new structure and other upgrades.
“We’re so excited to begin another season and we’re excited the community has embraced this because it’s the community’s asset,” said Small. “It can only be bigger and better with people participating.”