Category: News

CEC, COVID-19 Preparedness and Flattening the Curve

The Compost Education Centre is currently doing its part to respond to COVID 19 concerns and working to “flatten the curve” of the outbreak.

Although policies and events are evolving rapidly we are currently:

  • Maintaining a healthy work environment with posted information about how to stop the spread of illness.
  • Encouraging employees, visitors and workshop attendees to stay home when ill, having traveled to one of the countries on Canada’s advisory list or having had recent contact with a sick person.
  • Promoting proper hygiene (hand washing, coughing and sneezing etiquette) and social distancing among employees, visitors and workshop attendees.
  • Ensuring easy availability of soap and water, or alcohol-based hand sanitizer products.
  • Expanding and establishing policies and tools that enable employees to work from home.

You can connect to trusted information via the Office of the Provincial Health Officer or the BC Centre for Disease Control.

Healing City Soils 2019 Update

The Royal Roads University Student Team, GVA Soil Solutions, has wrapped up their work with Healing City Soils for 2019.  This year the team continued their focus on testing and mapping soil quality in the West Shore Communities, but also received many applications from all over the CRD.  Their final report, with many illuminating results, can be read in our office located at 1216 North Park.
The updated soil quality map, which includes 2019 soil test locations ranging from Sooke to Sidney, can be found here:
Applicants can expect to receive their test results this fall as well as notifications on how to access to the free workshop “Understanding and Addressing Soil Contamination for Gardeners”.  This workshop, led by soil remediation and mapping expert Steeve Deschenes, assists applicants in making sense of their test results and then making a plan for their gardens should they have higher-than-normal levels of heavy metals in their soils.

August Organic Plant Sale: Saturday, August 17, 2019

Missed the window in June and July to seed your winter vegetable garden? Not to worry, we’re hosting our 8th annual August Organic Plant sale so you can still have fresh greens and herbs throughout the winter!

The plant sale will be held Saturday, August 17th from 10am to 1pm on the street outside the CEC (1216 North Park Street). Gardeners can expect to find a wide selection of plants for fall and winter growing and harvest including kale, broccoli, cabbages, collards, arugula, cold hardy lettuces, herbs like cilantro and parsley, and many others. Local, organic farmers are:

Ravensong Seeds

Saanich Organics

The Compost Education Centre

Metchosin Farm

Cam Kidd with Perennials, and Mushroom Spawn

Haliburton Farm

and more!

No need to register for this event but feel free to call our office at 250 386 9676 or contact us via email at office at if you have any questions.

June 22nd, 11-3: Summer Solstice Garden Party

Join the Compost Education Centre on June 22nd from 11-3pm for our Summer Solstice Garden Party, a satellite event of Fernfest, located in the Teaching Gardens of the Compost Education Centre in the heart of Fernwood!

Chock full of awesomeness, the Summer Solstice Garden Party, which is part AGM, part community celebration and part silent auction, is sure to deliver the goods during a packed weekend. Heck, with all the fun things going on around the city, we might as well call it a city-wide Summer Solstice Festival!

At the Compost Education Centre, located at 1216 North Park, we will hold our Annual General Meeting from 11-12. Here, members in good standing can vote on issues important to our organization and learn about the CEC’s extraordinary accomplishments in 2018. AGM attendees are automatically entered to win a door prize, and also receive a free meal ticket for our afternoon bbq in the garden! (Yep, we’re bribing you to show up for an important meeting.)

Following the AGM, at 12 and 2pm, our Site Manager, Kayla, will lead interactive site tours. Not gonna be here at 11 for our AGM, or not familiar with our site? Never fear, volunteers at Fernfest’s Field of Dreams will be waiting to guide folks to our Teaching Gardens, and signage around the neighborhood will point you in the right direction. During these 30 minute Site Tours guests will learn through sight, smell, touch and taste about our Teaching Gardens and multifaceted educational programming.

From 12:30-2:30 we’ll be serving up bbq eats and ice cold drinks by donation; simultaneously we will be hosting our annual silent auction in our Strawbale Classroom. Auction items are comprised of donations from an array of local businesses, from swanky restaurants, to useful gardening supplies, and those much needed self-care gift cards!

So come, celebrate the fruits of our garden (and our labor), relax and visit in the garden with good music, good food and good company while supporting the Compost Education Centre’s commitment to accessible education, environmental sustainability, and, undoubtedly, composting. Whether you’re a longtime friend of the Compost Education Centre or a first time visitor we would love to have you!

May 11th: Spring Organic Plant Sale, 10-2pm

The Compost Education Centre (CEC) is hosting our 16th annual all-organic spring plant sale! The event is on Saturday May 11th, 10am-2pm at the CEC demonstration site at 1216 North Park Street. The Spring Organic Plant Sale features local farmers offering a wide variety of organically grown vegetable, flower and herb seedlings to get you off to a successful start this growing season.

What you can look forward to:
• The largest selection of organically grown heirloom tomato varieties all in one place for easy shopping
• Organically grown vegetable starts from arugula to zucchini
• Native plants for your low maintenance garden
• Perennial edibles like berry bushes and other fruiting shrubs
• Medicinal herbs like English lavender, chamomile and yarrow
• Culinary herbs like Genovese basil, dill and chives
• Companion plants like marigolds, sweet cicely and comfrey
• Live music!

Saanich Organics

Metchosin Farm


Mason Street City Farm


Organic Gardener’s Pantry

Haliburton Farm

Crooked Fir Farm & Nursery

Community Garden Growers

Cam Kidd

The Compost Education Centre

Troubleshooting Roots in Your Compost Bin

Though composting can be a pretty basic process once you understand the fundamentals, there’s bound to be a few hiccups along the way. In this video, Site Manager and Adult Education Coordinator, Alysha Punnett, shows us how to tackle the invasion of wandering roots in a compost bin.