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FULL CIRCLE: How to Grow Winter-harvest Vegetables
by Carol McIntyre
December 14, 2008

Growing vegetables is a new trend for back-yard gardeners. FULL CIRCLE: How to Grow Winter-harvest Vegetables is a local course developed by Carol McIntyre that offers novice and experienced gardeners hands-on methods for growing vegetables that will stand in the garden all winter, providing nutritious organic choices from October to April-May with no weeding, no watering, no insect control all winter long.

Carol guides participants in choosing and ordering seeds, planning and developing the garden site, knowing what to plant, when and how, and learning simple but effective methods to nurture and protect plants, as well as how to save seed for future seasons. Gardeners benefit from time and support between sessions to adapt ideas to their unique needs and settings.

“It takes time and attention to grow a garden,” McIntyre adds. “A weekend course of this magnitude is often overwhelming for participants.”

FULL CIRCLE starts in January, 2009, continuing in spring, early summer, and early fall. “When learning translates into doing in real time, gardeners work with the seasons while developing the most important skill of all: trusting their experience and intuition in their own garden. My course is designed to facilitate that process.”

Topics include suggestions for sustainable living, health benefits of eating foods in season, and a variety of nutritious recipes. Participants are given comprehensive notes, starter materials, as well as on-line access to Carol for answers to individual questions.

“Vegetables aren’t everyone’s appetite teaser,” McIntyre says, “but they should be. Medical experts and Canada’s Food Guide recommends we eat 5-10 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. With the rising cost of food and the availability of cheap processed foods, obesity is increasing along with incidents of related diseases such as heart and stroke, asthma, and certain cancers that contribute to reduced quality of life and increased medical costs,” Carol explains.

“Winter produce often comes from great distances, reducing nutritional value at considerable expense to the consumer and to our planet due to costs of packaging, transportation, and storage. Eating locally in season is good for us and for the planet.

“Informed growers are informed voters. Knowing what it takes to produce food will encourage folks to take increased responsibility in ‘thinking globally, acting locally’,” McIntyre adds.

“I would love to see every food bank have links to local vegetable gardens,” says Carol. “People taking action together make the difference.”

Not everyone can live on a farm. Few people have access to acreage gardens. But with a little know-how, a back yard can provide a surprising amount of nutritious vegetables. “Why grow grass when you can grow food?” McIntyre asks. “For the gardener in your family, sign them up for the gift of growing food this holiday season!”

FULL CIRCLE will be offered in the following:

• Victoria: Jan. 10, Mar. 21, May 30, Oct. 3

• Parksville: Jan. 17, Mar. 29, Jun. 6, Sept. 12

• Uculet: Jan. 24, Apr. 4, Jun. 20, Sept. 19

• Port Alberni: Jan. 25, Apr. 5, Jun. 21, Sept. 20

• Comox Valley: Jan. 31, Mar. 18, Jun. 13, Sept. 26

• Campbell River: Feb. 7, Apr. 19, Jun. 14, Sept. 27

Cost per session is $50.00 ($45.00/session discount if paying for all four together.) Space is limited.

For more information and to register, email Carol at

Include your email address and location.

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