Volunteers unloading plants and setting them up for the OXA Xeriscape Plant Sale. A convoy of trucks delivered them from the Glenmore site where they were propagated and grown. -Image: Judie Steeves

OXA plant sale a boost for water-wise gardeners

Pollinator plants and native plants were popular at Okanagan Xeriscape Association event

Last Saturday, the Okanagan Xeriscape Association (OXA) held its seventh annual Xeriscape Plant Sale. Once again it was a huge success.

People went home with a great selection of xeriscape plants for their water-wise gardens. They learned more about xeriscape and socialized with other enthusiastic gardeners.

Pollinator plants and native plants were especially popular.

Border Free Bees had an information booth to help people create nectar gardens to add to the nectar trail throughout the city. Learn more at www.borderfreebees.com/resources/

The Okanagan Basin Water Board’s Make Water Work program was there to help people sign up for the 2018 Make Water Work challenge.

If you missed them Saturday, sign up at www.makewaterwork.ca for the contest.

The Okanagan Collaborative Conservation Program (www.okcp.ca) was there along with SeedCo to assist with information about gardening with native plants. They also gave away some local native seeds.

Xeriscape experts and Okanagan Master Gardeners answered many gardening questions.

This event was possible through the diligent work of OXA’s many member volunteers. They propagated the plants, labelled them, transported them back to the garden and assisted at the sale. Many of these volunteers also assist with maintenance in the unH2O Garden throughout the gardening season.

The garden is an excellent resource to show the lush, ever-changing beauty that is possible in a xeriscape garden. There are five theme gardens to help illustrate that xeriscape is a method of gardening. Almost any style is possible.

Following the Seven Principles of Xeriscape is the best way I know to simplify gardening and lead to success. It is gardening with the climate you live in rather than fighting it.

I extend a big thank you to all the volunteers who make it possible to maintain our beautiful unH2O Garden and to put on our annual, spectacularly successful plant sale.

Funds from the sale are used for the garden and to support the programs and resources offered by OXA.

This includes the website and searchable plant database at www.okanaganxeriscape.org

Speaking of programs, everyone is invited to attend a free presentation: ‘Fire Smart and Xeriscape Plants’ on Tuesday, May 22.

With the increasing threat of wildfires in urban-forest interface areas, there is strong encouragement to change home landscapes (in these situations) to minimize the spread of fire.

Xeriscape specialist, Eva Antonijevic will delve into a wealth of information on Fire Smart landscaping.

She will show how appropriate, water-wise plants and landscapes (while still looking lush and beautiful) can reduce the vulnerability of buildings and property to wildfire.

The event is at the downtown branch of the Okanagan Regional Library. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. The presentation is from 6:45 to 7:45 p.m. followed by the OXA Annual General Meeting. All are welcome to stay for refreshments and the AGM.

The City of Kelowna and OXA, are sponsoring ‘Homeowners Irrigation and Landscaping Information Session’, Saturday, May 26 from noon to 4pm at the Kinsmen Field House, 3975 Gordon Drive. RSVP to watersmart@kelowna.ca for this free presentation.

Gwen Steele is executive-director of the non-profit Okanagan Xeriscape Association.

To report a typo, email: edit@kelownacapnews.com.


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