Fernie is home to an all-new garden centre, with the Three Sisters Farm and Greenhouse opening just this weekend.
Three Sisters is the work of Madi Bragg, who is well-known as a local gardening guru through her own gardening exploits and through her advice to fellow gardeners in community gardening groups.
“I’ve dreamed about owning a garden centre – I really want to help people grow,” she said. “There’s emotional, psychological and health benefits to being in the garden, whether you’re growing food or flowers. Just being in the dirt and watching things grow is pretty healthy.”
With 20 years of gardening experience behind her (including ten years learning about what works – and what doesn’t – in Fernie), she said that more people were discovering gardening and growing their own food to be important not just to their health, but their food security as well.
“During the pandemic we started to realize that a lot of the food we eat is imported from other countries, and if something were to happen then we might run out of food.
“During the pandemic people have more time – they may be working from home, they’re able to look after a few things around the house and the property that they wouldn’t have before, and I think gardening may have grown in popularity during the pandemic.”
Enter Three Sisters Farm and Greenhouse. Right now it’s all about setting up keen gardeners to get ready for the coming season of growing, but there’s plans to sell more than just seedlings and mulch – but started plants, trees and more. On the subject of when to start gardens, Bragg is the one to ask.
Some free advice to start with (though you can get plenty more if you head to the farm on Anderson Rd): don’t be too fast in starting your gardens.
“We have a very long winter here and we like to start our gardens,” she said, explaining that her experiments over the years had shown that often, starting later when the weather was warmer yielded better results – but a lot of it depended on your garden.
“I try and share when things are successful for me. I don’t consider it a success if I do it in one year, I consider it a success if five years running I’m pulling 12 to 14-inch broccoli heads off my plants.”
Three Sisters Farm and Greenhouse is open daily from 9am to 5pm at 3132 Anderson Rd, Fernie, offering seeds (and soon to be seedlings), organic mulch, plastic-free gardening options, lots of local products and more.
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter