Vol. June 2012Good Growing News!

Call them them ladybugs, call them ladybird beetles, or call them Coccinellidae as the entomologists do. These little beetles are perhaps the most familiar of all beneficial insects. Ladybugs feed on aphids, which are one of the most common insect pests that also spread many plant diseases. So an abundance of ladybugs in the garden is something to encourage. But what other beneficial predatory insects are there, and what steps can organic gardeners take to encourage their presence? Find out which are the best plants for attracting beneficial insects!

West Coast Seeds
4930 Elliott Street,
Delta, British Columbia
Canada V4K 2Y1
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Tel: 604-952-8820
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Announcements

Garden City: Richmond’s Agricultural Legacy
The Main Gallery at the Richmond Museum will be showcasing the city’s rich farming history from June 21st to October 21st. Though Richmond has grown into a vibrant urban centre, a significant portion of Richmond’s land area remains agricultural, and as such, is an important part of the local and regional economy. Drop by and celebrate the city that very recently voted to go GM-free!
The Museum is located at 7700 Minoru Gate in Richmond.

The Land Conservancy of British Columbia Pollinator Enhancement Project
The Land Conservancy of British Columbia believes strongly in the conservation of pollinators and  is excited to launch a Native Pollinator Enhancement Project to address pollinator decline. To find out more about the project and receive a gift of pollinator friendly seeds from West Coast Seeds please contact Nathalie Chambers or visit the website.

Please support our important work and bee-come a member!



  
  
Summer approaches
We’re nearly there! The summer solstice on June 21st signifies the longest day of the year and the official calendar arrival of summer. The earth is tilted with the north pole as close as it gets to the sun. And that means warmer weather, stronger light levels, and longer daytime hours, which make for good gardening.

This wonderful growing season is also time for certain insect pests to make their presence known. As organic gardeners, we can take a number of approaches to dealing with insects without the use of chemical pesticides. This month‘s newsletter features articles on planting to attract beneficial insects, the kinds of insects that we need to attract, as well as the ecological approach to garden insects known as Integrated Pest Management. All gardeners should take a rational, environmentally friendly attitude, and create diverse, healthy ecosystems in the garden to minimize the impact of pests.
June Features
Time to apply predatory nematodes

The soil is now warm enough for predatory nematodes to be an effective biological control against certain ground-dwelling insects such as chafer beetle, wireworm, weevils, and others. Use this natural product to control pests rather than applying pesticide.

Organic pest control tricks
Learn what the best flowers are to plant in order to attract beneficial insects to your yard or farm. Let them do the busy work of controlling pest species! Predatory insects come in all shapes and sizes, but they play an integral role in organic gardens and farms.
Time to plant "edamame"
The soil is also warm enough now to plant heat-loving crops like corn and soya beans, or edamame as they are sometimes called. These bushy plants take up little room, and produce ample pods full of edible and exceptionally nutritious soya beans! 

 
Gardening Classes

West Coast Seeds’ retail store is equipped with a classroom where we offer a series of gardening classes and lectures. The retail store is located at 4930 Elliott Street in Ladner, British Columbia – right on the corner of Elliott Street and River Road. Refreshments will be provided at each of our classes.

Our classes are finished for the spring of 2012. We would like to extend our thanks to Brian Campbell and the other instructors who ran the classes. Special thanks also to those of you who attended the classes. Hopefully we’ll see more of you soon.

The fall/winter schedule will be posted next month. Classes resume in September.

Do you belong to a garden club?
Why not schedule a special event for your club in the classroom at West Coast Seeds? We’ll provide refreshments, an introduction to our company, and an informative gardening lecture. Our classroom can hold up to 30 people. If you’d like to book an event at our space, please contact Sharon by email. Please allow at least 30 days notice.

Passport to Permaculture Kids Camp
Our friends at The World in a Garden are running a fantastic kids camp that educates young people about the three ethics of permaculture: care of the earth, care of all people, and fair share (equal distribution). Campers will receive stamps in their passports throughout the week as they complete different activities in local food, nutrition, cultural diversity, biodiversity, ethical business and more! The week-long camp includes a field trip to Rocky Mountain Flatbread Company and culminates in a camper-run garden gate sale. The camps run from July 9-13, and July 23-27, and spaces are still available in both. To register, or for more information, phone Alicia Baddorf at 604-257-5151 ext. 1-213, or visit them online.
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