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Debbie has been tending and expanding the three acres of gardens for the past 17 years. “At that time, there were only three trees here,” she says, while standing in an area she calls an arboretum. “There was really nothing else.” What a difference a couple of decades has made. The arboretum now is populated with a variety of specimens, including pear, apple and cherry trees. And in one area, Debbie planted a grouping of pines. “I like to stand in the middle of them while the wind is blowing,” she says. “The pines make a lovely, whistling sound that reminds me of my youth.” Debbie grew up on a dairy farm in the Eastern Townships. “It instilled in me a knowledge of how to live off the land,” she says. “When you live on a farm, you live off the land. When I was young, we harvested the food to make jams and pickles at the end of the growing season. I still bake a lot.” She uses the bounty from a berry garden that she created near the arboretum. “I grow blackberries, blueberries, haskap berries, strawberries and goji berries,” Debbie says. “I freeze them and eat them with yogurt during the winter months.” The winter is the couple’s busiest time of year. The large greenhouses on the property are used to cultivate a vast variety of plants that are sold to nurseries during the gardening season, says Henryk. That season goes full-tilt between May and July, after which time the couple can turn their attention back to their own gardens. •



Montreal Home - Autumn 2017  

Montreal Home - Autumn 2017