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ValleyLiving T H E C O M O X VA L L E Y R E C O R D

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An interview with Tom Gray pg2

How Does Your Garden Grow Ask an Expert pg6 Brooklyn Students Learn to Blog pg8

221C Church Street, Comox 250-941-7824 blindsandbubbles.com


2 The Comox Valley Record

Va l l e y L i v i n g

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

❰❰ An Interview ❱❱

❰❰ Book Look ❱❱

with Tom Gray

What do Comox Valley writers like to read? We asked two well-known local authors and the owner of a prominent Comox Valley book store about their favourite books of all time.

Retired Comox Valley RCMP Inspector Now retired/raising chickens, roosters, and a small cacophony of birds on his rural property in Comox.

Paula Wild ~ writer,

Hometown?

longtime Comox Valley Record contributor

Grew up in B.C. — in Prince George.

How long in the Comox Valley? We (along with his wife Sherry) were living in Campbell River and in the spring of 2003, I competed for the inspector job. In the fall of 2003, we committed to buying land in the Comox Valley, and looked around, and we ended up buying a house in Comox.

Retired RCMP inspector Tom Gray inspects the hens that lay his eggs. What are the various jobs you've held over the years?

Claim to fame? Comox Valley RCMP inspector. In this position you're more involved in the day-to-day activities. You're responsible for many of the decisions at the end of the day, but it's probably the most satisfying because of the relationship you form with many people. I believe in strategic planning. We tried to take policing to a different level and try to prioritize and focus on certain issues. We were the first RCMP detachment with a full-time domestic violence investigator; we made that one of our priorities and worked with partners and other agencies.

Current passion? Working on expanding the farm and continuing to be involved in the community. I'm still involved in CrimeStoppers, I just got involved in the Comox Valley Community Foundation and I'm involved in Rotary with Strathcona Sunrise.

Favourite food? I always have to have coffee in the morning, and Fridays are usually good for a steak on the barbecue and a glass of wine — it's a nice way to end the week. I love to cook and I can make a really good stew and homemade soups. I'm also learning to make bread.

When I graduated high school in Golden, I worked for Ducks Unlimited as a go-fer, and worked with older men who said I should apply for the RCMP. I applied in Creston in January 1972, and got a job with the town working on a garbage truck. In October, I got a phone call on a Monday (from the RCMP), and it was a whirlwind because on Thursday I had to leave for training in Regina. I quite enjoyed it. I was 19 years old, completely naive, and it wasn't easy, but I actually enjoyed (training).

What was the best thing about your career and why? To have a livelihood that enjoy and that supported my family, and all of the adventures with moving around the province. Also, having three boys and watching them grow up on the right track.

What has been your most memorable life experience? When I met my wife, Sherry. By Erin Haluschak, Record Staff

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One of my all-time favourite books is to Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. I’ve read the book several times and am always drawn into the plot of racial tension, family dynamics and, most of all, the mysterious neighbour down the street. Another book that struck a chord with me is The Stone Angel by Margaret Laurence. I love the twist near the end of this bittersweet end of life story. As a mystery fan, one of my favourite authors is Ruth Rendell. The book from her extensive repertoire that stands out in my mind is Talking to Strange Men. No one gets inside the heads of their characters like Rendell!

Richard Mackie ~ writer

It might surprise people familiar with my books on the Comox Valley that my greatest literary influence is the English novelist and poet Thomas Hardy (1840-1928). I had Hardy’s Wessex in mind when I wrote my Comox Valley books. For Hardy, the local was all that mattered. He tried to preserve local dialect, ballads, dances, histories, culture, custom, traditions, folklore, and genealogy. Like Wessex, the historical Comox Valley was a self-contained place, rich in history and character, able to stand on its own without intellectual buttresses. I love all Hardy’s books, but I would recommend A Pair of Blue Eyes (1873), The Return of the Native (1878), and Two on a Tower (1882).

Evelyn Gillespie ~ owner, Laughing Oyster Books

Choosing a favourite book is like choosing a favourite child — impossible to do! But there are books that have been important to me at different times in my life. Formative books for me were the autobiographies of philosopher Simone de Beauvoir; Margaret Laurence's The Diviners (raw, earthy and supremely Canadian) and Virginia Woolf's Orlando and Room of One's Own. And who could better answer the question of the meaning of life than Douglas Adams in Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. But my favourite recent read is Mr. Penumbra's 24 Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan. This is a fun, mysterious and magical novel about the intersection of the old and the new — Google meets Gutenberg — books, bookstores, digital technologies and inquiring minds together.

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Va l l e y L i v i n g

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

The Comox Valley Record

3

Comox Valley Real Estate REVEALED Here & There:

The Comox Valley’s 12 month sell/list ratio has remained constant since January at 47%(remember that’s the ratio of sales to listings). You have to go all the way back to April 2012 before it reaches 50%. If you look at specific areas, Courtenay East has the best chance of selling at 54%, followed by Comox at 52%, Courtenay City at 48% and Cumberland at 47%. The Vancouver Island Real Estate Board breaks our area or zone as they call it, into 12 areas. The town of Comox has the most sales at 61, then Courtenay East at 36 and Courtenay City at 29. According to these statistics more than 50% of the listings taken over last year have not sold. There are a myriad of reasons, the house is too dated, it doesn’t have the right colours, the carpets are old, the flooring is in poor taste, the style is wrong, blah,blah,blah... I have yet to see a house you can’t sell, you can repaint, re-carpet, re-whatever. In most cases re-price is the solution. Right now we still have houses that are not realistically priced, some are because of condition, others because of the area. The reason VIREB breaks our zone

down into 12 different areas is because they are different, different by age, by style, by amenities. Crown Isle is different than Union Bay and Mt.Washington is not comparable to the Comox Peninsula. If you look at your area, what is your price range, it’s a better way of looking at it then an average price. Comox is the most diverse, there are sales from $125,000 to $552,000 this year, Comox can easily have a waterfront sale in excess of a million dollars. Right now only 22% of its sales are over $400,000; so why are 46% of the listings in Comox over $400,000? Courtenay City sale prices range from $225,000 to $364,900. Courtenay East sales, range from $207,000 to $600,000 so far this year and it too can easily have a sale in excess of a million dollars. There have been 215 completed sales this year, of the completed sales 20 are over $500,000. We are averaging 5 sales a month over $500,000, that means we have 42 months or 31/2 years of inventory (if we never take another listing in that price range), and we’ve taken 11 more.

Gregg Hart • Royal LePage in the Comox Valley

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4 The Comox Valley Record

Va l l e y L i v i n g

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

❰❰ Food News ❱ ❱

Food Events

Food News

BC Shellfish Festival, Comox June 14 and 15 bcshellfishfestival.ca

from around the Comox Valley by hanspetermeyer Congratulations to several new restaurants. The Breakwater Restaurant opened it’s patio to warmer weather on May 1 a new garden-inspired cocktail list. (Lavender Martini? Mmmm). Rachel McColm is the new owner of mobile vendor Sam & Petes Gourmet Hotdogs. She says they’ll keep serving locally made gluten free smokies, pulled pork sandwiches, and fresh made pizzas. Watch for them at Central Builders. Give her a tweet @SamandPetes. Know any other mobile vendors? Tweet me at @ BonVivantVanIsl.

May’s Vancouver Island #localfoodhero promo is sponsored by BC Shellfish Festival. Tell us who makes the best Island clam chowder and you’re in to win a backyard oyster BBQ for 6. FMI: http://j. mp/MayLFH

One Big Table returns to Avenue Bistro on May 27 with a 4 course wine-pairing dinner featuring Beaufort Vineyard's 2012 new releases.

Courtenay 660 England Ave. & 440 Lerwick Rd.

Relax and Enjoy Your Break on our Sunny Patio!

Chef Adrian Merrilees (formerly with Fluid Bar & Grill) has two newsworthy notes. First, he’s opened the Tee Box in at the Comox Golf Course, serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner 8-till-late every day. He’s also opening a small onsite restaurant at The Bridge in Courtenay. Lunches, afternoon snacks, tapas on the deck, BBQs on weekends.

Events and Activities

Got food news? Got a favourite stop or news that I’m missing? Please drop a note via http://j.mp/edcvNewsForm

Tria Fine Catering & Gourmet Eats Full Moon Feasts at Filberg Lodge & Park Comox ~ July 22 • August 20 triaculinarystudio.ca

Coastal Black Estate Winery’s bistro opens for 7 days a week, Victoria Day weekend till the Flavour event September 15. Watch for 10 days of clam pizza and “Oysters Rocky” from the wood-fired oven during BC Shellfish Festival.

Simon and Katy Fogg are the artisans behind Red Tree Specialty Coffee. Fairly new to the area, they’re part of an exciting emergent young/local food scene. Coffee is sourced via ethical channels, roasted here, and they’re featuring a roster of local food folks, including Darkside Chocolates, Little Orca Bakery, The Tea Center, and Tria Culinary. At the foot of the parking lot at 2230 Cliffe Ave.

Another chef on the move, Andrew Stigant (formerly with Crown Isle), has released his spring menu at both the Flying Canoe Pub and Chalk Lounge at the Westerly Hotel. Apparently he’s in a scrappy mood, laying claim to the “Best Burger In Town.” You tell me. June 6 the pub hosts the 3rd annual Best Caesar in Town, part of the BC Shellfish Festival. #CaesarJun6 on Twitter.

The North Island's Gourmet Picnic ~ Flavour gourmetpicnic.ca

BC Shellfish Festival events start June 6 with the Best Caesar in Town competition at the Flying Canoe Pub. On June14 it’s the Chef’s Dinner. On June 15 (12-5pm) it’s the free, public event at Comox Marina Park with cooking demos, chowder contest, and the BC finals for the Canadian Oyster Shucking competition (the winner goes on the Charlottetown, PEI). Great way to do “family” and “food” on Fathers’ Day weekend! Watch #BCShellFest on Twitter. FMI: BCShellfishFestival.ca Also tied to BC Shellfish Festival, Island Joy Rides bicycle/food tours is offering a Weekend Escape/Cycle of Love June 14-16 with a “ride bikes, eat oysters” theme. A great way for visitors to the area to learn about the region’s food culture – and generate a healthy appetite!

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Va l l e y L i v i n g

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

Talking BC Rosés with Cindy Holland

"Summer in a bottle," is how Courtenay VQA owner Cindy Holland describes the three bottles of pink wine in front of us. I’ve asked her to talk about BC wines and food pairings because of her knowledge of the 100s of wines in the shop. "I'm featuring rosés because they’re often under-rated as sweet and light-weight patio sippers. These three are all on the drier side, and all are very food-friendly." We start with the Stag's Hollow Syrah Rosé. "You'll notice strawberry and field flowers when you smell it,” Cindy tells me. “But the Syrah gives it spice and tannins, leaving a nice, crisp finish after that sweet front-of-mouth experience. I know from recent experience that it goes well with Greek-style grilled chicken with lemon, garlic, oregano and a watermelon salad with feta and sweet poppy seed dressing." Our second wine is a "mystery" winemaker Cathy Malone is inviting all Twitter users to unfold (tweet her at @ HillsideWines). Malone tell us there are six grapes in the Hillside Winery Rosé blend. Two are Merlot and Pinot Noir, but the rest? Cindy sniffs, sips, and considers. "It's fruit-forward on the nose with wild strawberry scents. It's got a nice weight with a good, long finish, some slight tannins at the end. I'm guessing there’s Syrah here, maybe even Gamay?" We all taste and interpret wines differently, she says. That's part of the fun of tasting: not only are all wines different, but how we experience them is also so varied. Nevertheless, she says that this wine, with

its "crisp green apple, almost citrus finish" would pair very well with buttery rich foods, like crab cakes. We’ve arrived at our final tasting this afternoon: the Tantalus Rosé, a 2012 vintage from old vines that date from the 1960s. Old vines generally produce less fruit, but with deeper roots they feature richer, more concentrated, complex, and perhaps earthier flavours. 50 year vines are considered “old” in the Okanagan; in a recent trip to Spain, Cindy says she tasted wine from 100 year old vines. This particular bottle harbours a blend of Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir. Cindy suggests we'll first experience the sweet aromas and flavours related to rose petals, even cotton candy. "But then it gets sharper, and finishes dry," she says, relishing the experience. "There's a higher alcohol level this vintage, and the flavours are stronger. I'd pair this with bolder foods like Dungenesse crab or spicy tapas – kalamari would be great!"

Your turn - If you’re interested in exploring the world of VQA (Vintners Quality Alliance) from BC, the Courtenay VQA stores hosts no-charge wine tastings Fridays and Saturdays, 3-6pm. And if you have a glass to share with us, please tell us what you’re enjoying on our “good food” page at Facebook.com/EatDrinkComoxValley. Wines discussed - Stag's Hollow Syrah Rosé (2012) from Okanagan Falls. Hillside Winery Rosé (2012) from the Naramata Bench. Tantalus Rosé (2012) from South East Kelowna.

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Fine Catering and Gourmet Eats

A Full Moon Feast menu from last year. photo BY: Boomer Jerritt

Scott Stanfield ~ Record Staff Tria: Fine Catering and Gourmet Eats offers catering options for special events, customizing menus that feature the best of the season. The business also features a frozen take-home dinner selection. "We have a whole different component that's growing," owner Kathy Jerritt said of the latter. "In addition to our catering services we have this whole line, and it's growing." Founded in 2009, Tria has grown and changed in accordance with customer needs. The business name derives from the Latin word for three, in reference to three core values: collaboration (with businesses, non-profit organizations, producers, farmers and individuals); thoughtfulness (supporting local growers, farmers and producers) and integrity. Tria retails out of Prontissima Pasta in the Tin Town section of Courtenay. Jerritt is collaborating with Prontissima owner Sarah Walsh and Lia McCormick, owner of Clever Crow. "We're trying to get together and collaborate on how to share costs on space and things like that," Jerritt said. "There's a common thread between all of us, which is trying to create fast, easy, healthy, locally sourced meals."

Tria owner Kathy Jerritt at the Farmers' Market. PHOTO BY: Cari McIntyre

Because Jerritt doesn't have a retail outlet, the trio is trying to co-market each other's products. Tria has its production facility on Fifth Street, but the business has reached a stage where it needs a bigger space. The next step is to streamline the packaging and to eventually reach a point where the frozen take-home component is a viable, healthy option. "We try to source the ingredients and the components from around here," Jerritt said. "We have our regular customers who order from us every month." Tria started back at the outdoor Farmers' Market the last weekend of April. Its popular crepe stand features changing specials including sweet and savoury choices. It moves indoor in October where it sells frozen take-home dinners. Tria is entering its fifth season hosting the popular Full Moon Feasts, a magical evening of food, wine and company on the lawn of the Filberg Lodge in Comox. There are 50 seats available for each evening, with an additional six open for charities and non-profits. Full Moon Feast dates are July 22 and Aug. 20, starting at 6 p.m. For more information or to book a space, contact bookings@triafinecatering.ca or phone 250-871-8716. reporter@comoxvalleyrecord.com

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6 The Comox Valley Record

Va l l e y L i v i n g

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

❰❰ Producer Profile ❱❱

How does your

Locally grown, artisanal producrts, custom catering: As You Like It

GARDEN GROW!

Chef Laura Agnew, AsYou Like it Catering

❰❰ Ask An Expert ❱❱

Hans Peter Meyer When Chef Laura Agnew and her family moved to the Comox Valley part of the reason was our emerging local food culture. “In some ways it’s better than the Cowichan Valley,” she says. “There’s so much more capacity to produce local, organic food.” Another factor was affordability of productive land. Laura knew she wanted to grow more of what went into her products and catering, so the family traded an urban Victoria life for a small house on an historic farm in Union Bay. Five years later, her As You Like It brand has Laura busy catering and selling product at a number of venues on the Island. The brand is about “local.” It’s also about “custom.” “I work with catering clientele to find the right mix of local flavour and price point,” she says. On the retail side, she’s just finished with the seasonal Mother’s Day baskets, and is gearing up for a rush on her BBQ sauces as Father’s Day approaches. “The picnic baskets are very popular,” she says, “but the men, they’re more likely to BBQ.” Laura’s Signature BBQ sauce, with its distinctive “Windsor-style,” is a hot item. “It was inspired by a sauce I grew up with and visitors from Ontario tell me it tastes like it’s from that region.” But Laura didn’t start with the Signature BBQ sauce, and neither it nor the picnic baskets are all that her local food-focused business is about. Roots in the markets Sixteen years ago she was making a sweet, spicy sauce to go with Pad Thai and crab cakes in a Brentwood Bay eatery. “People kept popping their heads into the kitchen, asking to take some home.” During her first maternity Laura started bottling the Chiang-Mai sauce and selling at Victoria area farmers’ markets. She continues to create fresh ideas for her products and catering, sourcing almost entirely from her ever-expanding garden and the Comox Valley Farmers' Market. Markets are an important part of the growth of Chef Laura’s business. “They’re great places to test products, see what people like and hear what they have to say. People love the interaction.” After five years at the Comox Valley Farmers' Market, she recently experienced her biggest day of sales. “It’s great to see repeat customers bringing their friends to try my awesome sauces.” Extracurricular activities include volunteering with the local “Growing Chefs” school program. “It's about helping kids understand how to grow and prepare vegetables and where it comes from. They love it.”

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This is the number one question I am asked during garden consults and the quick answer is: right after they flower. Pruning too late after the flower declines you could be pruning off next year’s prized bouquets. Because we live in a rain forest most plants will exceed their expected final sizes and it is important to garden design that plants maintain their intended shapes. You should also prune any dead or wild looking branches off when they appear. If you have to severely prune a mature shrub try not to remove more than a third of it in one pruning, and be patient as it might take a few years to produce flowers again. Happy gardening!

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THE COMOX VALLEY RECORD

VA L L E Y L I V I N G

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

BROOKLYN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL Grade 3 teacher CATHY BULGER teaches her students HOWTO BLOG as they practise their writing skills. Bulger's class has an edublog called Climb High, at

www.climbhigh.edublogs.org, which students regularly write for and post to as part of their class work. All correspondence and student posts must be approved by Bulger before it shows up on the blog for safety reasons. People all over the world read the class' work and provide comment, which Bulger says is her favourite thing about the tool. "This is an avenue for them to write for a real purpose," she says. "That's one of the biggest things that I use the blog for is rather than just writing and putting it in a book or in a file, they are writing for a purpose, knowing that people in the world are reading their writing." The 24 kids in Bulger's class must comment back when a reader comments on their post, which they enjoy doing, adds Bulger. "When the kids get comments from other people, it's just such a thrill," she says. "They absolutely love it. Every day or two they're looking to see if anyone has commented back to them." Students write about various topics as part of their class exercises but they also take part in a Student Blogging Challenge. The challenges goes out to various class blogs around the world and pose certain questions or subjects for students to respond to. Though it's called a 'challenge,' Bulger says the activity is designed more to allow students to see how other students respond than to compete. Her class can see what students

from another class in another part of the world wrote and compare it to their responses, giving them a glimpse into other cultures. According to Bulger, class blogging is becoming popular in many countries, particularly Australia, New Zealand and England.

She says the students, aged eight and nine, develop a sense of global awareness via blogging. "It's a wonderful way for them to look at the world and see how far away it really is," says Bulger. "So getting that idea of how global we are and how we can attach a real meaning to somebody around the world."

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VA L L E Y L I V I N G

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

Behind the Scenes

THE COMOX VALLEY RECORD

CUSTOM BASKETS made with love

at Anderton Nursery

CORNUCOPIA OF TREES, SHRUBS & POND PLANTS in a beautiful outdoor setting Growing thousands of plants from seeds requires precise planning and inventory control

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9


10 The Comox Valley Record

Va l l e y L i v i n g

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

❰❰ Duchess of Dirt ❱❱

Planting for those tough places Leslie Cox ~ Special to the Record How many of you have at least one tough spot in your garden? I am sure there must be a few who have an area that challenges your aspirations of being the Master Gardener of your domain. I know I do. More than one area, in fact. Ever since we put in the bed along our narrow rural road back in 2001 and the big changes that began on the front garden in 2004, I have been struggling to find "what works" in my garden. My problem? Three large trees and three smaller trees. Always thankful for the small miracles in my life...at least I only have to worry about six trees. We took six trees out. Twelve were just too many for an area roughly 55 feet by 50 feet. (Why is it people insist on planting something because "it will not get big in my lifetime"?) But three of the trees pose the biggest problems for me.

Acer campestre (hedge maple) is one of the trees under which it is difficult to plant things.

Simply put — they are big. Really big. Their roots go everywhere. So let me put one gardening myth to rest. The feeder roots DO NOT end at the outer reaches of the tree's canopy. And Graham Rice concurs in his book Planting the Dry Shade Garden (Timber Press, Inc. 2011). According to Graham, and it makes sense, tree roots will reach out in their search for whatever fertilizer and moisture they can find. I can certainly testify my trees have been sending their feeder roots out in all directions... way, way beyond...in fact, far beyond the limits of their outer leaves. Probably because I always add a generous amount of manure or compost, plus a healthy serving of a complete fertilizer into every planting hole I dig. I have justifiably made my trees very happy in my garden. My trees are also very happy with all the water I give to my new plantings or transplants. Naturally...they would be. Just like a kid with a fistful of change in a candy store.

PARADISE PLANTS

GARDEN CENTRE

R E TA I L • G A R D E N D E S I G N • I N S TA L L AT I O N

Garden Design • New Construction • Garden Renovations • Irrigation • Walls and Patios

Iain & Cassandra Haigh

OPEN DAILY 9:00 AM - 5:00PM

Photo by Leslie Cox Not to be left out of the equation in the problem with gardening around trees is dealing with their shade quotient. First, let me make it perfectly clear. There is nowhere I would rather be on a hot summer day than under my shade trees reposing with a tall glass of something deliciously cool... sometimes spiked...usually not. But when it comes to planting underneath... man, it can be a hard slog finding plants that are tough enough to cut the mustard and stand up to those trees. Well, surprise, surprise. Two of my six trees made Graham's list of tough trees to plant under — Acer campestre (hedge maple) and Aesculus hippocastanum (horse chestnut). John has one on the list, too...his Acer platanoides (Norway maple). I also think my Acer saccharinum (silver leaf maple) should have been on Graham's list. As should any tree that is over 25 feet tall, I don't care what the species. When it comes to the root system on a large tree, you are talking tough planting. Graham went on to classify various tree species by denseness of shade and early versus late leafing varieties...among other criteria. Sure, those factors do have some bearing on what one can plant underneath. But bottom line...if a plant cannot compete with tree roots, it is a sad-looking plant indeed. I mentioned it is a tough slog to find plants that will look nice in my tough areas underneath the trees. It is true. Through trial and error, my front garden has taken some time to get to where I am happy with the results. Mostly because I was trying to put in plants that I liked or wanted in my garden that were totally unsuitable for the

If you would like to visit our garden, we are open every Friday and Saturday or by appointment. For our hours and more details, check out my website at www.duchessofdirt.ca, e-mail duchessofdirt@telus.net or phone 250-337-8051. Leslie Cox co-owns Growing Concern Cottage Garden in Black Creek.

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growing conditions. Thankfully, I am "getting there." Nothing wrong with trial and error. It makes the end result much more enjoyable.He was attempting to increase crop yields and disease resistance, primarily root rot, by grafting watermelon scion onto a squash rootstock. Specifically, Cucurbita moschata to which butternut and winter crookneck squash belong. Based on his success with watermelons and its spread throughout the agricultural sector, grafting cucumbers soon followed. Nowadays, herbaceous grafting is done on melons, cucumbers, peppers, eggplants ... and tomatoes. And it is catching on in North America with the advancement in development of robots and machinery in the grafted seedling production process. Some of the labour-intensive costs for this type of seedling production can now be reduced. Interesting to note, most of the grafted seedling production facilities in North America are located in B.C and Ontario. They supply greenhouse commercial growers throughout North America and Mexico. As for the home gardener ... grafted tomatoes have been available from selected seed suppliers since about 2008 as near as I can ascertain. Art Knapp's Plantland started offering them in 2012. The supposed perks to these new, albeitexpensive, tomato plants is a higher crop yield of your favourite heirloom variety and greater disease resistance. And the latest buzz I am hearing in grafted tomatoes ... having two different tomato varieties on the same plant, thus saving valuable gardening space. Have not tried growing a grafted tomato plant yet so the jury is still out for me.

250-334-0801

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Monday - Friday 8am - 5pm

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VA L L E Y L I V I N G

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

THE COMOX VALLEY RECORD

11

CHINA

s d r a c Post HOME

From the first day arriving in China until the last day of my visit, I was continually struck by the industriousness of this country and its people. From the Ming Dynasty until present day China, the testaments of a hard-working peoples are everywhere to be seen.

DIANNE HAWKINS, President & CEO, Comox Valley Chamber of Commerce

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Foot of Mission Hill • 123 N. Island Hwy., Courtenay V9N 3N9

The Forbidden City is 7 metres deep below the concrete, re-enforced with rocks and all measure of debris to ensure that the Emperor’s place of residence was secure from anyone entering into the City by tunnelling underground. The Summer Palace was a magical display of gardens, the bridge of arches built over a beautiful serene man-made lake and island. This is where the Emperor and his subjects would live during the fairer weather from May until October. To saunter along pathways that were once travelled on by Emperors hundreds of years ago is almost unimaginable. It was a beautiful sight to behold. Visiting the Suzhou Singapore Industrial Park to view its 2024 plans for the future was another testament to the industriousness of these peoples and its government. The business tour guide elaborated for us the plans for the Suzhou area. The model used for demonstrations depicted the vision of Suzhou by 2024. The only comparison I can give you was similar to seeing the Star Trek captain

demonstrating by a lighted control panel the next galaxy. Each district is divided into industry and uses. (picture attached) and our guide led us through each district by moving, lighting and demonstrating the areas. (there will also be an underground rapid transit system below the water) My favourite memory of China was in Shanghai, we (2 travelling companions and myself) were invited to visit the home of a business woman who’s manufacturing company makes parts for GM. Spending an evening sitting around the table in her home and sharing a meal was a wonderful taste of the culture of China in real life. She and her family were gracious hosts and we were honoured to be welcomed into her home. She personally took us to her favourite shopping spots and gladly bartered on our behalf, it was quite enlightening to watch. Later we visited a health spa and as her guests, were treated to foot massages and then delivered back to our hotel gifts in hand. It was a magical end to a “forever remembered” trip.


12

THE COMOX VALLEY RECORD

FINGERNAILS give us the ability to scratch when we have an itch!

VA L L E Y L I V I N G

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

THE IMPORTANCE OF FINGERNAILS

The fingernail is a structure made of keratin that acts as a protective shield and also enhances the sensation of the fingertip. Although the nail has no nerve endings, our fingertips do! The nail acts as a counterforce to the fingertip providing even more sensory input when an object is touched. Our finger nails also help with dexterity and are very helpful when trying to pick up coins or peel an orange. Nails are made up of hardened skin cells. There is a matrix underneath the cuticle of the nail (the half moon), and when new skin cells grow, the previous cells are pressed forward and create a hardened, visible nail. Fingernails grow faster than toenails at a rate of 3mm per month taking 6 months to grow from the root to the free edge. Toenails grow about 1 mm per month and take 12-18 months to be completely replaced. Nail disorders can result from improper and poor nail care so Dermatologists recommend we keep our nails clean and dry. This keeps bacteria and other contagious germs from developing under the nails. To maintain healthy nails, having regular manicures (and pedicures for your feet) is a very good idea. A manicure improves the look of the fingernails and hands as well as assists in the prevention of hang nails, nail damage and developing fragile tips, splits etc. In addition, the massage included with manicures enhances blood circulation, helps improve skin's health and discourages wrinkling. After hands are soaked and washed thoroughly, the nails are shaped

FOR THE HEALTH OF IT! Book one of our fabulous manicures today!

and a cuticle conditioner is applied. Cuticles are gently pushed back and any loose or dead skin is removed. Next your hands and arms are exfoliated and in some manicures, masks or paraffin is included. Then a hydrating lotion is massaged onto the hands and arms and to

finish, nails are either buffed for shine or polish applied. Submitted by: Leanne at Level 10 Eurospa • 250-334-0209 www.level10eurospa.com

SPANX

Spanx. If you’re a woman, you’ve probably heard of it and have likely even worn it. It’s the secret beneath a woman’s clothes that slims and smooths her silhouette. You might know it as a body-shaper. And the woman behind this product is every bit as successful as the product itself. Sara Blakely, the founder of Spanx, did what many entrepreneurs did – she solved a problem. In her case, her problem was finding an undergarment that would provide a blemish-free look under her white pants. When she couldn’t find what she was looking for, she created it. Spanx started humbly with control-top pantyhose with the feet cut off. This simple idea led to an undergarment revolution. It led to over 200 products, each designed to provide an improved shape without any bumps or lines along the way. But, of course, Spanx isn’t just known in the lingerie field; Spanx has been mentioned by everyone from Hollywood to CNN to Saturday Night Live. And this craze for Spanx has made Blakely the youngest self-made billionaire, according to Forbes magazine, not to mention one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People. Today, Spanx can be found in every

shape and size and its latest line, Thinstincts, is poised to be another hit. Tops in this line not only smooth the torso but also fit every chest best as there is no control in the bosom, allowing women to wear the bra of their choice. Of course, Spanx’s mission remains the same: To help women feel great about themselves and their potential. And that’s a mission we can get behind.

Natasha Bill for Secret Drawers Lingerie Ltd. • 431 5th Street, Courtenay • 250-897-7488

Slimming So Sleek. It’s Second Nature! You can trust in this collection’s ultra-flat edges and cool fabric to keep you looking sleek and feeling comfortable.

204 - 1025 Cliffe Ave. Courtenay • 250-334-0209 www.level10eurospa.com

underwearmatters.blogspot.com 431 Fifth Street, Downtown Courtenay 250-897-7488

S

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ON

Offe


VA L L E Y L I V I N G

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

THE DOORS...

THE MODERN MOVEMENT (1920'S TO 1950'S)

Now considered retro style, you will find it in homes, fine furniture and clothing.

Professional Offices Residential • Retail • Commercial (New and Renovations)

Complete Interior Design Services

Accessories Colour Consultations Floor Coverings Furniture Furniture & Artwork Placement Lighting • Wall Paper Window Coverings

Unit F - 1766 Ryan Rd., Comox BC. (250) 941-0262 • www.jmid.ca

APPOINTMENTS RECOMMENDED

Many variations of this are seen on homes built in the 20's to 40's.

JUDITH MOORE INTERIOR DESIGN

REGENCY (1811 - 1837)

A favourite classic, it is used frequently for inside doors.

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*** Excludes accessories and food waste disposers. To be eligible for Kitchen Appliance Bonus Instant Rebate offer, total minimum retail purchase price of multiple qualifying Maytag® appliances must be $1000 before taxes. Multiple purchases must be made from the same authorized Canadian Maytag® appliance dealer at the same time. Dealer prices may vary. Dealers have sole discretion to set retail prices. ® /™ © 2013 Maytag. Used under license in Canada. All rights reserved.

BONUS INSTANT REBATE***

when you purchase 3 or more qualifying Maytag® Kitchen appliances.

** See sales associate for details

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RECEIVE A

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BONUS INSTANT REBATE***

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Over $2000 Instant Rebate value based on maximum combined rebate amounts on purchase of qualifying Maytag® appliances. In-store, instant rebate (after taxes) valid on qualifying Maytag® appliances purchased from a participating authorized Canadian Maytag ® appliance dealer between May 1 and June 2, 2013. Instant rebate will be deducted at time of purchase. GST/HST/QST and Provincial Sales Tax (where applicable) are included in the rebate amount.

Some conditions apply. purchase Offer cannot be combined other Maytag appliance offer. This offer is not available to dealers, builders or contractors. when you 3 with oranymore ** All models may not be available®at all dealers. See sales associate in-store for qualifying models. qualifying Maytag Kitchen appliances. *** Excludes accessories and food waste disposers. To be eligible for Kitchen Appliance Bonus Instant Rebate offer, total minimum retail purchase price Mon. ®

of multiple qualifying Maytag® appliances must be $1000 before taxes. Multiple purchases must be made from the same authorized Canadian Maytag® appliance dealer at the same time. Dealer prices may vary. Dealers have sole discretion to set retail prices. ® /™ © 2013 Maytag. Used under license in Canada. All rights reserved.

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* Over $2000 Instant Rebate value based on maximum combined rebate amounts on purchase of qualifying Maytag® appliances. In-store, instant rebate (after taxes) valid on qualifying Maytag® appliances purchased from a participating authorized Canadian Maytag® appliance dealer between May 1 and June 2, 2013. Instant rebate will be deducted at time of purchase. GST/HST/QST and Provincial Sales Tax (where applicable) are included in the rebate amount. Some conditions apply. Offer cannot be combined with any other Maytag® appliance offer. This offer is not available to dealers, builders or contractors. ** All models may not be available at all dealers. See sales associate in-store for qualifying models. *** Excludes accessories and food waste disposers. To be eligible for Kitchen Appliance Bonus Instant Rebate offer, total minimum retail purchase price of multiple qualifying Maytag® appliances must be $1000 before taxes. Multiple purchases must be made from the same authorized Canadian Maytag® appliance dealer at the same time. Dealer prices may vary. Dealers have sole discretion to set retail prices. ® /™ © 2013 Maytag. Used under license in Canada. All rights reserved.

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13

ART DECO (1920-20'S)

Nope, not Jim Morrison - but the entrance to your home, your bedroom, or the opening to your backyard, each one says something about the style of your home. Door stores have many for you to choose from and all of them have their beginnings in the following eras:

By Judith Moore

THE COMOX VALLEY RECORD

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14 The Comox Valley Record

Not all windows are created equal ... nor will they pass inspection! New building codes go into effect July 1

Va l l e y L i v i n g

If you are considering a home improvement project or new construction for any project that includes the purchase and installation of windows or doors and is one that requires a building permit, you should be aware of significant changes in the building code that will take effect on July 1. With Canada leading North American in its commitment to energy efficiency, the Canadian government is requiring all window manufacturers to comply with the new and stricter manufacturing, testing, and labeling requirements. According to Bob Kamerbeek, a representative of All Weather Windows, “The focus of these new changes is to minimize the amount of air and wind that can penetrate through a window.” “If a customer purchases windows without the new labeling after July 1, the building inspector for that project will most likely require replacing the new window with one that is compliant with the new requirements,” he adds.

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013 While these new changes are on the Federal level, British Columbia is the only province that already requires windows be low-e and Argon filled, so homeowners and contractors here on the island should be sure any newly purchased windows comply with that requirement as well. The new technology that is incorporated into these new specifications is only the minimum required for a window to be governmentregulation compliant. Many homeowners choose to add additional features that vary by manufacturer. All Weather’s “SunStop” is one of their most popular features that keeps homes cooler during the summer and warmer in the winter by increasing R Values, as compared to clear glass. For a product category that many think of as a commodity—one window is the same as the next—it is important to know how much window/glass technology has evolved in just the last decade. Window manufacturers around the world are investing huge dollars

into R&D to gain the competitive edge in energy efficiency and other features, as simple as built-in blinds. Be sure to do your research with a local company that not only can provide you with information about the government requirements, but also about features. Also make sure your installer is aware of these building code requirements, installs windows that are compliant, and stands behind his or her work. And, don’t forget to read the fine print in warranties or ask questions of your retailer. Some manufacturer warranties even have stipulations in the fine print about the validity of the warranty in and around salt water. Steve Nixon, owner of Black Creek Farm & Feed Supply in Black Creek, which carries an array of windows and doors for various building projects. 250-337-8922. www.BlackCreekFarmAndFeed.com.

MEET OUR ADVERTISERS Black Creek Farm & Feed

Grains Bakery

Provides supplies for home, farm, animal care, garden, building/ hardware/lumber. www.BlackCreekFarmAndFeed.com. See ad on page 6.

Welcome to Grains Bakery. We strive to provide, in all of our baking and cooking, ingredients that are natural, fresh, and preservative free.. See ad on page 4.

Secret Drawers Lingerie

End of the Roll

With 16 years of expertise, Nena and Vashti offer personal bra fittings. Lingerie from the small to the sizable, for all occasions. See ad on page 12.

Searle’s Shoes

Celebrating 80 years in the Comox Valley! Whether it’s for work, day to day or formal occasions we are sure to find the perfect shoe for you. See ad on page 2.

Courtenay Appliances

Come visit the luxury showroom at Courtenay Appliances where you’ll find all the appliances you need to help you cook up your dream kitchen. www.courtenayappliances.com See ad on page 13.

Barry Sawatsky of End of the Roll says whether you’re looking for laminate, vinyl, carpet, hardwood, tile or area rugs – our prices will floor you! See ad on page 7.

Blinds & Bubbles Boutique The North Island’s only Hunter Douglas Showroom. See ad on page 1.

Vera-De Windows Inc

has been designing, manufacturing and installing windows in the Comox Valley since 1998. We are the sole North American manufacturer of Aluplast E-85 windows and doors, one of the most advanced systems available today. See ad on page 16.

North Island Tractor

Sales, parts & service! Supplier of: baler twine, bale & net wrap; in stock natural sisal twine. Free parts delivery to Top Shelf Feeds. Island owned & operated www.northislandtractor.com See ad on page 10.

Paradise Plants

Proud to provide quality plants and educated plant knowledge to our customers. Our landscape design and installation focuses primarily on residential gardens – achieve your dream garden with us! www.paradiseplants.ca See ad on page 10.

Affordable Sewing

North Vancouver Island’s largest sewing machine outlet, “after the sale, it’s the service that counts” See ad on page 3.

Atlas Café

is the home of perfectly overstuffed breakfasts, bustling lunches and inspired dinners. A restaurant with consistent quality food, service and fun! See ad on page 5.


Va l l e y L i v i n g

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

The Comox Valley Record 15

Expert Advice – Focus on Vinyl Whether your décor is traditional, contemporary, or country, there is a large selection of vinyl flooring that will allow you to find the right style and colour to match your decorating schemes. The newest trend in today’s vinyl flooring is the reproduction of natural looking ceramic, slate, and stone designs, offering the texture, richness and the feel of real ceramic or stone tiles, but with a much easier-to-maintain finish. Vinyl flooring also comes in a huge variety of beautiful wood grain patterns. Ranging from light to dark, and fine to rougher wood grain finishes, you can easily get the look of hardwood in your home. Vinyl flooring is smart, practical and beautiful. It stands up to water, moisture, scuffs, and indentations in a warm, comfortable and ‘it-looksgreat’ kind of way. In a class all its own, today’s vinyl flooring offers you a wide spectrum of exciting choices and unusual design options.

Here are a variety of benefits that you should keep in mind when choosing a new Vinyl floor: • Unlimited design options - match any décor • Ease of maintenance - no hassles with cleaning • High durability - even in traffic areas • Broad range of costs - fits all budgets • Extremely moisture resistant - for wet area use • Unlimited usage - use in any room of the home • Great resiliency - easy underfoot Vinyl flooring is a type of resilient flooring that has some "give" or elasticity when you walk across it. It is often used in kitchens and bathrooms because of its good looks, resistance to moisture, wide variety of colours and textures, and relative ease of cleaning. This floor type provides stylish options, high performance and tremendous value. You can now have the look you want without having to worry about expensive costs or high maintenance. An experienced Flooring Advisor can provide you with valuable information, delivered in an easy-

to-understand way, so that you have everything you need to make the smartest decisions for you, your family and home. Decorating today is an exciting challenge that combines matching timeless themes with busy contemporary lifestyles, which can require a break from traditional thinking. Vinyl flooring has improved dramatically in style and aesthetic options over the last few years. Few other floor covering categories offer you the selection, styling, ease of maintenance and value as a vinyl floor. Technology has come a long way, and vinyl flooring is definitely worth every homeowner’s consideration. Submitted by: Barry Sawatzky End Of The Roll 2998 Kilpatrick Avenue Courtenay BC V9N 8P1 • 250-334-9394 Email: courtenay@endoftheroll.com www.endoftheroll.com

MEET OUR ADVERTISERS Slegg Lumber

Thinking of your new kitchen? “At Slegg Lumber, we offer free inhome consultations to work with your plans and ideas to create an affordable and pleasing reality”. See ad on page 3.

Francis Jeweller’s

VQA Wine Store

McConochies Furniture

Anderton Nursery Ltd.

Pilon Tool Rentals

Quality equipment rentals available daily, weekly or monthly to make your jobs easier. Ask about our delivery service. Call us at 250-338-5361. See ad on page 6 & 11.

For over 35 years - 20 of which has been in the Valley, Judith has been doing Interior Design. She shares her knowledge, new trends, and accolades of our local stores, trades and suppliers, by writing a monthly column for this newspaper. See ad on page 13.

Open 7 days a week our grocery stores are focused on food, driven by our fresh expertise and supported by superior customer service. For those who need assistance for grocery shopping and home delivery ask about the Sendial Program. See ad on page 4.

has been serving the Comox Valley for many years. Our customer service combined with our pricing is unmatched by any competitor. We carry a large line of jewellry, clocks, watches and gift ware. See ad on page 2.

Peter Finlayson, manager of McConochies Furniture and Appliances carries the brand name furniture and appliances that you can trust. Come browse our showroom. See ad on page 13.

Judith Moore Interior Design

Thrifty Foods

Showcasing the very best of BC Wines and and open 7 days a week, with prices that you would pay at the Government Liquor Store. See ad on page 5.

A local grower, retailer, wholesaler and Garden Center operating 16 green houses on 38 acres in the Comox Valley. We have knowledgeable staff to help you design your garden. See ad on page 8.

Level 10 Eurospa

Celebrating 22 years in business, Level 10 Eurospa has always promised to provide service above the expected. At this full service salon and spa it is all about the client and ensuring ‘A Beautiful Experience’. See ad on page 12.

Come & Enjoy!

11th Annual

Art & Festival

Bloom

May 18, 19 and 20, 2013

Kitty Coleman

Woodland Gardens

www.woodlandgardens.ca


16 The Comox Valley Record

Va l l e y L i v i n g

Tuesday, MAY 14, 2013

42% OFF OUR NEW Tilt-Turn WINDOW & DOOR SYSTEM DISCOVER FOR YOURSELF WHAT MAKES US DIFFERENT

World class quality & energy efficiency that you can afford.

Guaranteed to be the finest on the planet.

Aluplast extrusions built by:

Minimum order, any combination of 3 or more doors/windows. Cannot be combined with another offer. Offer may end without notice.

VERA-DE WINDOWS INC The Comfort in Windows • Deutscher Meisterbetrieb www.veradewindows.com • 2940 Moray Ave., Courtenay • 250-334-9819 Manufactured in the Comox Valley Since 1998

May 14, 2013  

Section V of the May 14, 2013 edition of the Comox Valley Record

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