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HG Wednesday, May 25, 2016 17

HOMEGROWN

Whether it’s biting into a crisp apple or a juicy ripe tomato, cracking open a farm-\fresh egg or slicing an organic turkey breast, the pleasure we derive from eating is universal. Now add to that the satisfaction of knowing the food you’re enjoying was produced by your neighbours. Whether it’s served with a flourish at your favourite restaurant or painstakingly prepared in your own kitchen, eating Homegrown means you’ll find fresher fare, leave a smaller carbon footprint and support local business in the process. From field to garden, greenhouse to farmgate, rural Langley offers a trove of agricultural treasures — many of them tucked out of sight along the network of backroads that weaves the community together. We’ve unearthed a few of those gems and included them here, in Homegrown.

BC Buzz Honey Corporation. Photo by Miranda GATHERCOLE


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HG Unique places in Langley www.langleytimes.com

Wednesday, May 25, 2016 19

HOMEGROWN

Travelling along the scenic back roads of Langley, residents and visitors alike can discover the quality products local farmers grow and raise, while getting to know the families who work in these pastoral pieces of paradise. From enjoying a day spent picking ripe berries, or selecting a pumpkin for Halloween, to picking up local cheese at a quaint farm bistro – Langley farmers have opened their gates and are happy to greet you.

enjoy their farm gate shop, featuring wines and artisan preserves, cheeses, charcuterie.

U-Pick

Township 7 Vineyard and Winery – daily 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 21152 16 Ave. Enjoy the tasting room or have a picnic. Situated on three acres, Township 7 is host to popular events like Bard in the Valley, happening this summer, as well as a Father’s Day event, Art in the Vines, Easter egg hunt and grape stomp, with proceeds going to local charity.

Driediger Farm Market – open May to September, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 23823 72 Ave. Mouthwatering strawberries are ripe and ready for the picking, or visitors can purchase flats or baskets of them at the market shop, along with eggs, jams, honey and pies. U-pick of raspberries and blueberries begins later this summer. Driediger Farms is one of the oldest berry farms in Langley and has been passed down for generations. Krause Berry Farms and Estate Winery – market, winery and bakery open Wednesday to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 6179 248 St. Saddle up in the winery and taste their award-winning wines, enjoy family friendly U-pick fields, shop in the market, eat one of their famous waffles and strawberries, take a cooking class or take home one of their mile-high pies.

Wineries Vista D’oro Farms and Winery — Tuesday to Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 346 208 St. A wine and culinary experience overlooking Campbell Valley Park. Stop by and

St. Settled in Langley in 2007 and opened their tasting room shortly after. Blackwood Lane’s higher price point is matched by the depth of their reds which fetch ratings in the 90s for their Reference ($100) and pinot noir or signature Bordeaux blend Alliance.

Chaberton Estate Winery and Bacchus Bistro – lunch Wednesday to Sunday, dinner Thursday to Sunday at 1064 216 St. Langley’s oldest winery, celebrating 25 years in business, is open year-round with tasting and tours of the cellar and vineyard. Dine among the vines at the bistro.

Farm Gate

Coghlan Cottage Farm – Farm gate sales: Friday 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. at 6238 256 St. The farm is run by husband and wife team, Jeff and Stacey Langford, who are passionate about thumbing their noses at the industrial food system and re-imagining what family farming can look like. Call 604-381-3234; email: stacey@coghlancottagefarm.com

Milner Valley Cheese – Tuesday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. at 21479 Smith Cres. Nestled in the Milner Valley on a former Hudson Bay farmstead is Miner Valley Cheese, offering handcrafted goat cheeses. During the summer, enjoy their delicious selection of goat milk gelato.

Backyard Vineyards – at 3033 232 St. Since opening the vineyard with approachable wines that are tasty but easier on the wallet, this Langley winery has also taken home some awards, too. With Wine Flight Fridays in the summer, and offering a popular bubbly, lots to taste here. Call for winery hours. The Fort Wine Company – 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., closed Tuesday and Wednesdays at 26151 84 Ave. Saddle up, partner, and come to the Fort Wine Company to see how they turn Langley’s fruits into wine, with their signature cranberry wines harvested from nearby fields. Blackwood Lane Vineyard and Winery – at 6179 248

JD Farms Specialty Turkey store and Bistro – open daily 9 a.m to 6 p.m. - 24726 52 Ave. It’s long been a Langley tradition for residents to get their holiday turkey from JD Farms. Offering turkeys that are certified free of antibiotics – and are fed no animal by-products – these birds go fast. JD Farms offers a bistro for tasty sandwiches, soups, breakfast, and more.

Aldor Acres – open year-round at 24990 84 Ave. Now into its 26th year, it is Langley’s pumpkin farm, offering a petting zoo, hay rides and more. Throughout the year, there are special events, school tours and kids camps. Glenwood Valley Farms in Langley —veggies, jams and preserves sold at various farmers markets and grocery stores. For 25 years, Glenwood Valley Farms has grown an expanded line of vegetables. From their kitchen, they make jams and preserves, like pickled beans red pepper jelly and pickles. Visit theglenwoodvalleyfarms.com for more

Langley Community Farmers Market every Wednesday until Oct. 12, 12-4 p.m. - 20901 Langley Bypass at the courtyard of Kwantlen University. With 66 vendors, this is where Langley farmers sell the food they produce whether it be meat, produce, fruit, cheese, herbs and more for you to take home.

Pinsch of Soil farm sells fresh produce at 258 208 St. each Tuesday, Friday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Kensington Prairie Farm – Friday to Sunday - 1736 248 St. Home to 50 alpacas, the farm retails a broad array of alpaca products including yarn, socks, hats and also

From our

D R A Y K C A B

features home grown beef and alpaca meat products. Laurica Farm – by appointment at 25775 12 Ave. This small family farm offers everything related to conscientious farming with organically grown produce, pasture raised meats, eggs. Laurica offers kids camps, workshops and tours.

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20 Wednesday, May 25, 2016

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HOMEGROWN

Langley honey vendors creating a buzz

MONIQUE TAMMINGA, Times Reporter Some vending machines supply cold drinks, others stock candy and chips. But in Langley’s farm country, there’s a vending machine that supplies fresh honey. Langley is full of farm-gate stands working on the honour system, where eggs, plants, berries and vegetables are sold with just an unattended drop-box to accept payment. But the guys at BC Buzz Honey Corporation have people put their money into a vending machine to receive a jar of their sweet raw honey in return.

own raw honey each year, they take on other Langley beekeepers’ honey and package it for them. They bought all the equipment necessary to process and bottle the honey, so it only made sense to offer their services to other honey makers. “We are novices and always learning as we go. We’ve made some bee-keeping errors for sure, but that’s part of the fun,” said Friesen. Placing the hives in the right spot, away from wind and hungry bears, is important, they’ve learned.

“It’s been a big hit,” said Kris Friesen, coowner of BC Buzz Honey. “You can just pull over to our honey hut and grab some honey to go.”

The hives mostly take care of themselves but every few weeks, Friesen and Davies check in on their bees and, most importantly, make sure the Queen bee is happy.

Located along the Historic Otter Trail on 248 Street, just north of Krause Berry Farms, the honey hut looks a bit like a scene in Disneyland, with its cute, oversized beehive mailbox and cartoon-bees flying around the honey hut.

Beekeeping is a calming experience after a demanding day at work, they said. Davies is the founder of the small business Chris’ Signs, and Friesen works with him.

Behind the vending machine is where the production team of bees is busy at work. A lush green field is dotted with buzzing boxes, each filled with thousands of honey bees busily forming and filling the intricate combs with golden nectar. BC Buzz Honey is the brainchild of Chris Davies and Kris Friesen, friends and business partners who decided to try their hand at beekeeping three years ago. Having kept their day jobs, the pair are becoming quite comfortable donning the protective white suits and veils. Not only do they produce hundreds of pounds of their

“Our jobs can be demanding, there are deadlines and expectations,” said Friesen. “With the bees, they are doing their job, and coming out here, things are quiet and calm.” “It’s fascinating, the social structure of the bees, how the Queen rules the roost and how much honey they make. Not to mention the beauty of the honeycombs,” he said, holding up a honeycomb full of hundreds of bees, busily filling the cells with honey. The bees, unfazed by the movement, keep working. The pair say they’ve been stung plenty of times over the years — Davies more than Friesen, they joked.

M IR A ND A GAT HE R C OLE Langley Time s

BC Buzz Honey Corporation owners Kris Friesen and Chris Davies

“Chris is kind of like a bull in a China shop, handling the hives,” Friesen laughed. “They can get in your veil. One stung me right on the nose,” said Davies. By summer, the combs will be so full of honey, each hive can weigh more than 80 pounds.

The raw honey they sell has subtle flavour varieties depending on where the bees were getting their nectar — whether it be wild flowers, fireweed, blackberry, dandelion or strawberries.

“It can get pretty backbreaking lifting those up,” he said.

“Not only do the flavours vary depending on what type of flower they go to, the flavour can change from season to season, or just because of the different concentration of nectar in the hives,” said Friesen.

The men chose to produce and sell only raw honey, rather than pasteurize it. Raw honey holds important enzymes, nutrients and antioxidants that can get lost during pasteurization.

The two Chris’s enjoy taking their honey on the road to various home and food shows, including the recent Wine and Food Festival at Langley Events Centre. They will be also showcasing their honey at this year’s Langley

Community Farmers Market. “We love to educate people about honey, and we really want people to try our honey — it really tastes that amazing,” Friesen said. The two beekeepers say they are always trying new things and recently had success creating cinnamon honey. Now they are selling honeycombs out of their vending machine and for sale at the farmer’s market. They also sell the popular honey sticks, which kids love and are in high demand as wedding favours. Check out BC Buzz’s vending machine at 6321 248 St. or at bcbuzzhoney.com.

Un-Bee-lievable Facts • A single bee colony can produce more than 100 pounds (45 kg) of honey in a single season • Honey bees love sweet clover, alfalfa, thistle and dandelions but gardeners can help the honey bee too by planting echinacea, snapdragons, hostas, foxglove, sunflowers and blue giant Hyssop, to name a few.

• Bees remove the excess moisture (water) from nectar by rapidly fanning their wings over the open cells in the hive. The wax is discarded by worker bees to shape the cells of the combs in the hive that hold honey. • Beeswax has been used by people for centuries for various purposes, including candle making, in cosmetics and as a food additive.

• It takes one colony of honey bees (around 30,000 bees) to pollinate an acre of fruit trees.

• Honey varies in colour from white to golden to dark brown and, usually, the darker the colour, the stronger the flavour.

• A normal colony contains only one Queen who may lay 2,000 eggs per day during her busy season

• Honey is considered to be one of the safest foods — most harmful bacteria cannot live in honey for any length of time. It also has healing properties and is used to help with coughs, colds and sore throats.

• There may be 60,000 worker bees (undeveloped females) who do all the work. There will also be several hundred drones (male bees). • Honey bees are not attracted to human food smells like wasps are.

• Raw honey contains important enzymes and antioxidants that are lost in pasteurization. But pregnant woman and toddlers should not consume raw honey. It can contain a bacterium called Clostridium botuli-

num, which can be deadly for a baby. * Some facts taken from The Canadian Honey Council booklet The Story of Honey by L K Dennis The value of fruits, vegetables and legumes pollinated by bees is estimated at 10 times the value of honey produced (over $1 billion in Canada), yet with continued deforestation and development, natural pollinators are disappearing rapidly. Humans depend on honey bees for many of our daily foods — without honey bees, food crops could not survive. Scientists all over the world are sounding the alarm about dying honey bees (colony collapse disorder), without being able to identify one specific cause. Some reasons that have been identified for the decline of honey bee populations are loss of habitat to development, loss of wildflower meadows, climate change and pesticides, including deadly neonicotinoids.


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Wednesday, May 25, 2016 21

HOMEGROWN

‘An opportunity to grow’ — WWOOFing in Langley KELVIN GAWLEY, Times Reporter

can go at their own speed. You don’t have have to worry about it because you’re giving them food and you’re teaching them and they’re staying here but you’re not paying them by the hour, so you don’t have to be putting that pressure on them like ‘You need to get this done right now!’” she says.

On a small organic food farm in Langley, a stone’s throw from the U.S. border, lives a young German couple lives with their twoyear-old daughter, Lily, among patches of leeks, tomatoes, arugula, onions, garlic, 24 chickens, many other vegetables and an abundance of peace and quiet. They like to add one more element to the mix as often as possible: strangers from around the world.

Marianne came for more than just a few meals and a bed, though. “She was also a keener. She was really keen… She had a clear thing in mind: She wanted to learn about gardening, permaculture, homesteading, those kinds of things. She really wanted to take home a lot of information.”

Nadja Moritz and Marcel Sachse are members of an international organization that facilitates the exchange of work for room and board on organic farms. WWOOF is an organization that started in England as Working Weekends on Organic Farms. It was an initiative to get city slickers to stick their soft hands into some dirt and become acquainted with what was, at the time, a burgeoning world of organic food production. Today, WWOOF (now WordWide Opportunities on Organic Farms) has members in almost every country in the world and has become a popular way for travellers to save money and for farmers to get some much needed labour. A “Wwoofer” will find a farm’s profile online, message the farm owner, and ask to come stay for anywhere from a couple days, to several weeks. In exchange for a few hours of work each day, the Wwoofer gets a place to sleep and food to eat — often the same organic produce they are helping to grow. Moritz and Sachse were themselves Wwoofers long before they became hosts. Soon after meeting as opponents at a handball tournament in Seattle, they dated and worked on farms in Quebec. Both were born and raised in Germany, but Moritz had been living in Vancouver since high school and Sachse was on a

The hosts have a new guest already confirmed to come stay for two weeks and have had requests from Wwoofers from around the world. They say they are eager to meet more Wwoofers and learn as much as they teach.

MIR ANDA GAT HE R C OLE Langley Time s

Nadja Moritz, Marcel Sachse and daughter Lily Sachse-Moritz at Pinsch of Soil Farm in south Langley.

work exchange in Seattle. Sachse had never Wwoofed but he had met fellow travellers who had, when he was in Australia. It seemed like a fun way to travel while saving money and learning. “We went there and we did one week in Lachute; That was more close to the Ottawa side. And then the other one was close to Chicoutimi, that was very good. One was very English-speaking, the other was just plain, there was no English. That was tough, so in a way, that’s why we did it too because we wanted to brush up our French,” says Sachse.

The couple then moved to Vancouver and soon after began working on a farm on Ladner’s Westham Island.

farm in Ladner, which they love, but continue to grow their plots and use more of their property to make food.

For both, it came as a bit of a surprise that they had found a passion for farming (Sachse studied international business administration and Moritz studied forestry).

They had their first guest earlier this year, a young woman, Marianne, from Ontario who was a true Wwoofing enthusiast. She was spending two years going farm to farm.

When Moritz’s parents were considering buying a five-acre property in Langley, the young couple decided to go in with them and start a small farm of their own. And it was an easy decision to become WWOOF hosts as soon as possible. They both continue to work on the

“We would have kept her probably for the whole summer,” says Moritz.

Growing relationships KELVIN GAWLEY, Times Reporter

placement of the plants.

Marcel Sachse likes to think of himself as a “relationship manager.”

Dandelions or horseradish plants have long roots that reach deep into the earth and draw up nutrients for themselves but also for their more shallow-rooted neighbours. This is why you’ll find dandelions and horseradish plants next to the pear, plum, and apple trees on the farm.

But the relationships he manages aren’t between people; they’re the interactions between the various plants on his small Langley farm, called Pinsch of Soil. Practicing a farming technique known as permaculture, Sachse puts plants side by side when he knows they can be beneficial to one another, in a kind of symbiotic relationship. This is also his role in his own, human, relationship with his farming partner and wife. “Nadja has a whole lot of the knowledge of the vegetable plants that actually grow, how they grow and [how] they should look when you transplant them and how you should care for them.” And it is Sachse’s role to know the

Sachse says it’s all about working with nature to design the most efficient system possible. “You try to put plants in relation with the soil and the relation that they have and try to include the different patterns or find patterns in nature and apply them on the land.” Conserving water is also important in how Sachse designs the farm. Borrowing from the world of landscape design, he built a mound at the bottom of a small hill on the property. The water that seeps into

the side of the mound is then absorbed by the plants growing in it: onions, garlic, herbs and flowers—which are themselves edible as well as being beneficial to the plants around them by attracting the right kinds of insects. Were it not for the mound, that water would simply keep flowing off their property, he says. As the couple makes plans to expand their farm farther back into their property, they will need to clear a patch thick with alders, blackberry bushes and other greenery. The answer to that problem is, of course, introducing a new relationship. The couple hopes to soon adopt goats and keep them for more than their milk and companionship. They will have the goats munch through the underbrush and make way for new plants and, naturally, relationships.

“She was awesome. “It’s just wonderful to know there’s someone out there who is puttering along. And they

The social element, they say, is perhaps the most powerful though, as it takes a good amount of trust and openness from both sides to make the scenario work. “You are allowing people into your life for a certain period of time. I can’t see it’s something anyone can do because you have to open up, even as a host, to share your stories,” he says. “When people come and watch what you do [and your] private things. It’s not just working at the farm... They also get to know what you do in the evening, how you do things, all your quirks,” says Sachse. “The only time we don’t see them is when we sleep. From breakfast to dinner, you spend time together… It’s very eye opening but everyone brings their own stories… “It’s an opportunity to grow.”


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Wednesday, May 25, 2016 23

Langley preserves garner international attention MIRANDA GATHERCOLE, Times Reporter

and caviar are our little bottles of jam. That was pretty cool.”

Every year in the Knightsbridge neighbourhood of London, England, 15 million customers walk through the doors of one of the most famous stores in the world — Harrods.

And one of her best customers — a tiny 500 square-foot cheese shop — is Molto Formaggio in Dallas, Texas. “He sells more jam than all of the Whole Foods combined up here. It’s pretty funny,” Murphy said.

Amid its 330 departments, featuring Europe’s finest clothing, makeup and homewares, a small product from a south Langley farm is sold.

“The preserves do so well with cheeses. When they are paired together it really brings out the flavours.”

Exquisite preserves, handmade by Lee Murphy at Vista D’oro Farms and Winery on 208 Street and 4 Avenue, have been carried by the high-end department store since 2014.

Despite her international success, Murphy says the most important aspect of her products is keeping them fresh and local. Using only fruit in season, she and her husband, Patrick, who runs the winery side of their business, cultivate four of their 10 acres of land to grow their own apples, pears, plums, cherries and crab apples (another four acres are used as a vineyard). All berries are bought from Lower Mainland farmers, and other fruits that cannot be grown on the West Coast, such as peaches or apricots, are sourced from the Okanagan. The only fruits that are not from B.C. are exotics, like pineapple and mango, that are used in Murphy’s winter line of jams.

Beginning as a small-batch product sold at farmers markets in the early 2000s, the Vista D’oro Preservatory jams have migrated into 66 El Cortes Ingles department stores in Spain, all Whole Foods Markets in B.C., and numerous small shops across Canada, the United States and Dubai, with future locations coming to the Netherlands, France and Japan. Boasting 24 unique blends — ranging from “figs and walnut wine” and “craft beer jam” to “spiced cranberry and ice wine” — Murphy’s jams first captured the taste buds of a Harrods buyer at the Anuga Food Fair in Germany, one of the largest food shows in the world.

“We use all natural ingredients. It’s basically just fruit, sugar, lemon juice and then whatever other creative combinations end up in there,” she said.

“It was surreal,” Murphy recalled. “One of the buyers from Harrods found it and contacted me when she got back to London. It was one of those emails where you go, ‘Really? Is this really a Harrods buyer?’ So that was very exciting.” The year after, Murphy showcased her preserves at the International Food & Drink Event in London, England, and another buyer approached her about using Vista D’oro products in their hampers. “Our preserves ended up in the Christmas hampers this year, and one of the hampers was £20,000 ($38,450),” she said. “Alongside these huge bottles of champagne

In particular, Murphy prides herself on not adding any pectin into her preserves — a normal practice in Europe, but seldom done in North America — which causes some jams to be softer set. MIR ANDA GATHER COLE L an gley Tim es

Lee Murphy’s preserves first captured the taste buds of locals at Fraser Valley farmers markets just over 10 years ago. Today, her line of 24 jams are sold at high-end departments stores including Harrods in London, England and 66 locations of El Cortes Ingles in Spain. It is one arm of the business she and her husband run at Vista D’oro Farms and Winery in southern Langley. .

“That’s how we like to eat, and it’s not necessary,” she said. “To me, pectin kind of gums up the flavour. The fruit shines without the pectin — literally — they are sparkly. “So there was a bit of education when we were selling here at first. It’s not like that now, Bow it’s the handmade artisanal products that are getting the star treatment.”

On that account, it comes as no surprise that Murphy’s European-style products were inspired by a trip in 2002 to a culinary mecca — Paris, France. At that time, she had just started selling jams with her herbs and tomatoes at farmers markets, and had finished building a commercial kitchen at her farm to host cooking classes from local chefs. “I just got super inspired by all the different flavour pairings of preserves that were there. It wasn’t just strawberry jam, it was strawberry with cabernet and all sort of interesting combinations,” she said. Since that trip, Murphy only devotes a small portion of her line to plain jams, aptly named “Plain Ol’ Jam,” which are made for kids. Everything else — including 75 new flavours being launched in a cookbook next year — are custom combinations. “I love the creation. I didn’t realize I had that sort of creative side of my brain. And now that it’s been ignited, it’s all I can do to keep it to 24 flavours a year,” she said. Working with a team of three others, Murphy produces 50,000 jars of jam a year, with the capacity to grow their business to do even more. She is also starting new lines of canned pickles, salsas and nut butters. “My goal is to keep it artisanal, so (50,000 jars) sounds like a lot, but we are still hand-prepping everything,” she said “We have a filler now, and a capper, so that part of the equation is kind of automated. It takes out the part that doesn’t need to be hand-done.” For locals in Langley wanting a taste, Murphy’s preserves can be sampled and purchased in the Vista D’oro Farmgate Market and Tasting Room, located at 346 208 St., Thursdays through Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more on VIsta D’oro Farms and Winery, including recipes and a blog, visit the-preservatory.com.


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HOMEGROWN H G Goji Berries — Asian super fruit comes to Langley GARY AHUJA, Times Reporter Peter Breederland has been a farmer for close to 40 years. He started in the industry when he was 16 years old in his native Holland and carried on when he came to Canada 27 years ago. And for the past 23 years, the now 54-year-old has successfully run Topgro Greenhouses Ltd. on his 50-acre property in Aldergrove. But his greenhouse operation was only using 10 acres of his property to produce sweet mini bell peppers and he was looking to expand, so he set out to find his next venture.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016 25

learning about it all the more difficult for Breederland. This was five years ago and what followed next was a whole lot of research and different experiments. “There is very little information available so we had to do a lot of research,” Breederland explained. Some of the research included how to grow the plants, how to fertilize, which fertilizer to use, how to prune the bushes, possible insects, and more. All of this was done from scratch, with Breederland relying on his farming know-how as well as some trial and error.

“I was looking for something new, something different to do,” he explained.

And in 204, he produced his first crop of goji berries.

While brainstorming for ideas for his next crop, he came across the goji berry.

Breederland now has 10 acres on his property devoted to growing goji berries.

The goji is a bright orange-red, bean-shaped berry which contains a mix of vitamins (A and C), antioxidants, minerals, amino acids and protein and studies have shown they can boost energy and metabolism.

In addition to serving the local Asian market, Breederland said his product is perfect as more and more people are becoming health conscious and monitoring what they are putting in their bodies.

The berries have a sweet, tart taste and have long been a staple of the Asian diet.

The berries — which are in season from early June until Labour Day —  are hand-picked for sale at local markets while the remainder is machine-picked.

The goji berry is also native to China, which made

continued on page 27

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6321 248 Street, Langley • 1-855-7BC-BUZZ bcbuzzhoney.com

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Marie’s Guilt Free Bakery mariesguiltfreebakery.ca

Proudly serving locally sourced blueberries, yogurt, wheatgrass and produce.  

“We are a gluten free, wheat free, egg free and vegetarian bakery. We also offer sugar free and vegan options”

(If someone grew bananas in Langley, we’d buy those too!)

Open Tues, Wed and Fri 11-5pm or see you at a farmers market close to you

Unit 403 20540 Duncan Way, Langley • 778 999 6877

Taste familiar? We support BC farmers.

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DELI & GROCERY E ENTRÉES M Meat, Pasta, V Vegetarian & Gluten Free. G R Ready to Cook!

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H G Asian super fruit www.langleytimes.com

Wednesday, May 25, 2016 27

HOMEGROWN

And in addition to growing the berries, Breederland started Gojoy Berries. One of their main products is a Goji superfruit smoothie booster, which contains five frozen puree pouches. Each pouch contains half goji berries while the other half is a mix of blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, cranberries and blackberries. All of the berries are B.C. grown.

smoothie,” Breederland explained. They also sell boxes of the frozen berries. The berries can also be used in food and desserts with recipes available at www.gojoy.ca. The berries and smoothie booster packs are available in 40 stores around B.C. as well as some stores in Alberta.

Canada’s Oldest Honey Brand. All products are GMO free, and BCK Kosher Certified. Now find recipes, cooking tips, health tricks and more on our social media pages. Also online find a full directory of stores where you can purchase products or give us a call! Tel: 604-532-9757

And for this first time this year, Breederland will be offering u-pick options most likely twice a week, as well as a chance for people to purchase their own goji berry plants.

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“You access six berries. You get the antioxidants, the vitamins known for every particular berry, you have them all together, so it is a very convenient addition to your

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H G Langley Farm Facts: 28 Wednesday, May 25, 2016

www.langleytimes.com

HOMEGROWN

The Township of Langley remains one of the richest agricultural areas in the Lower Mainland. Boasting such natural capital as high-quality soils and an ideal growing climate — added to the fact that approximately three quarters of the Township’s land base falls within the Agricultural Land Reserve — it should come as no surprise to learn the municipality is home to half of all farms in Metro Vancouver. And within Langley’s farming community, there is as much variety as there are acres of land dedicated to the production of food (and drink).

Berries and Grapes There is a total of 173 farms in Langley whose main product is berries or grape vines. Most common types of berries grown here are cranberry, raspberry and blueberry. There are also several farms that produce strawberries Langley is home to 19 cranberry farms (95 per cent of cranberries grown in B.C. are sold in North America and make up a $56 million industry)

Wine Langley is home to the second largest wine-producing region in B.C., with seven wineries located

Dairy Langley is home to approximately 20 dairy farms

Beef and cattle

Township Events: From composting tips and growing plants that flourish with little water, to attracting beneficial bugs and gardening without chemicals, the Langley Demonstration Garden is a mecca for learning about everything good for your yard and garden —  and the environment. Located in the Derek Doubleday Arboretum in the 21200 block of Fraser Highway, the Demonstration Garden is run by the Township of Langley in partnership with the Langley Environmental Partners Society (LEPS). Visitors can drop by anytime throughout the year to discover sustainable gardening techniques, and staff are on site weekdays from May until August to provide advice and information. As well, community events and a number of workshops will be held this season to educate people of all ages and interests. For more information or to register, call 604-546-0344 or email garden@leps.bc.ca. Workshops are for participants aged 14 and over. Registration is required at least one week in advance, unless otherwise noted.

Intro to Hot Water Bath Canning 

Creating a Pollinators’ Paradise

Monday, June 6, 6:30 - 8 p.m. Don’t have time to attend a three-hour workshop? Join us for this condensed  session. Participants will learn how easy and inexpensive it can be to safely preserve fruit and vegetables at home. RSVP by May 30.

Wednesday, July 20, 6:30 - 8 p.m. Learn about local pollinators, discuss their role in the local environment, and discover the principles and benefits of planting a pollinator garden.  RSVP by July 13.

Mosaic Tile Garden Art

Thursday, Aug. 11, 6:30 - 8 p.m. Don’t have time to attend a three-hour workshop? Join us for this condensed session. Participants will learn to take the fear out of pressure canning.  RSVP by August 2.

Saturday, June 18, 10 a.m. - noon Learn an easy method to upcycle broken pottery and tiles into a garden stepping stone that you can take home. Use supplied materials or bring your own broken dishes, shells, stones, beads, jewelry, or other trinkets. For participants 12+ years. RSVP by June 10.

All Season Vegetable Gardening Monday, June 20, 6:30 - 8 p.m. On the West Coast, you can harvest fresh vegetables from your garden 365 days a year. Learn the tricks of planning a winter vegetable garden, which vegetables are most successful, and receive recipes.  RSVP by June 13.

Beef still dominates farm operations in Langley, followed by vineyards and blueberry farms.

GARDEN SMART WORKSHOPS

Greenhouses

Backyard Composting

Traditional Uses of Plants

Wednesday, May 25, 6:30 - 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug 23, 6:30 - 7:30 p.m. Make black gold in your backyard. Learn what type of composting fits your needs and how to quickly turn yard trimmings and fruit and vegetable scraps into rich organic fertilizer. Great for beginners and experienced compost users who want to troubleshoot their compost systems.

Saturday, June 25, 10 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. Ever wonder how first peoples of this area found food before farms and grocery stores?  Learn from local Elder Karen Gabriel the many ways First Nations people use plants for food, medicine, dyes, and more. RSVP by June 17.

Container Gardening for Kids 

Training Fruit Trees to Produce More Fruit

Saturday, July 16, 10 a.m. - noon Do you have trouble getting your kids to eat their vegetables? Once they grow their own, they will be happy to eat them. This hands-on workshop is for children aged 4 - 7 years old and requires caregiver participation.  RSVP by July 8.

In 2010, there were 71 farms with greenhouse operations or nurseries In 2006, the Township had the second largest greenhouse production in BC. With huge competition from Mexico, Langley greenhouse vegetables are marketed in the U.S.

Horses 471 horse farms valued at $50 million annually

Poultry and egg The most common type of livestock raised in Langley is poultry, with around 99 farms (85 per cent of which are intensive operations) dedicated to production; the rest are backyard hobby farms.

Goats and sheep Together goats and sheep make up the third most common type of livestock raised in Langley, produced on 53 farms. B.C. imports an average 375,000 kg of sheep and lamb meat each year. Goats are often used for weed control. Source: Statistics Canada 2011 census on agriculture and Township of Langley

Thursday, June 2, 6:30 - 8 p.m. This workshop will cover summer fruit tree pruning to reduce suckers and encourage more fruit production in future years. Learn about using mesh bags as non-chemical barriers to prevent codling moth and apple maggot infestations. RSVP to garden@leps.bc.ca by May 26.

Intro to Pressure Canning

COMMUNITY EVENTS Picnics in the Park Tuesday, June 14, 5 p.m. - 7 p.m. Monday, July 18, 5 p.m. - 7 p.m. Bring along a picnic and join us for garden tours and fun activities for the whole family. Some barbecue items and snacks will be available by donation.

Blackberry Bake-off and Open House Thursday, Aug. 18, noon - 3 p.m. This popular annual tradition continues! Enter a blackberry creation in the Bake-off for the chance to win local fame as Langley’s best blackberry chef. Bake-off entries must be submitted by 12:15pm, and tasting starts at 12:45 p.m.. Enjoy a locally-sourced barbecue for just $5, visit the kids’ craft corner, and groove to live music. No registration necessary unless entering a culinary creation.

Pinsch of Soil Farm in south Langley. Photo by Miranda GATHERCOLE


Homegrown special section