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Darach Seaton
Vancouver. BC
Owner-operator of FarmCity; carpenter & gardening zealot; sculpture teacher; artist. Recent upgrades: Pacific Permaculture Workshop, BCIT Green Roof Course.
Recent Activity
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As part of our specialty in outdoor woodcraft, we recently built some custom gates, privacy screens, and a front handrail for a gorgeous house renovation run by Howard Vera Design. The overall theme is West Coast modern, with warm cedar and fir elements, river rock and (soon to come) an innovative planting plan of decorative grasses and native BC plants and trees. For our part, we built some privacy screens for the back deck and barbeque area, new gates, and the front handrailing. The design focus is high craft, clean lines, and beautiful, oiled wood (using a very "green" penetrating... Continue reading
Posted Mar 29, 2014 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
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What to consider when you're trying to decide how big a vegetable garden you need. Continue reading
Posted Mar 11, 2014 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
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Where's the best place to put a vegetable garden? The basic issues of water, soil and light - and what food you can grow in semi-shaded and shaded areas. Continue reading
Posted Mar 4, 2014 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
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Part III of how to control fungus problems in the garden. Continue reading
Posted Feb 25, 2014 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
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Part II about how to prevent and control fungus infections in the garden. Continue reading
Posted Feb 18, 2014 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
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I have yet to talk to a burgeoning food gardener who isn't intent on growing their food organically. But organic growing involves developing a whole new body of knowledge about just what is an organic practise, or what tools and practises are available to an organic grower for things like pest control. So we thought we'd talk about some of the practises we use - here and in our next two posts, about fungus prevention and control - those dreaded plant diseases like downy mildew or late blight! Your best tool is, of course, prevention: Buy only healthy plants: this... Continue reading
Posted Feb 11, 2014 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
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How to grow basil - easy! Continue reading
Posted Feb 4, 2014 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
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Inspiration for the upcoming season: garden design and some of our recent food gardens - including a greenhouse on the North Shore. Continue reading
Posted Jan 21, 2014 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
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Beneficial nematodes are an increasingly common part of everyday gardening - but what are these creatures, and how do you use them? Continue reading
Posted Jan 16, 2014 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
A veggie garden standard, highly nutritious, delicious to eat: how can you go wrong with carrots? Just about everything you need to know about growing this fabulous food! Continue reading
Posted Jan 14, 2014 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
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We started our winter garden back in July: leeks, kale, brussels sprouts (above), cabbage, salsify, radicchio and chard, among other plants, all started from seed beneath the ripening tomatoes and the heavily laden bean vines. And we planted garlic in the fall at the same time as all the other bulbs. Some of these plants - chard, spinach, corn salad, radicchio, endive and various other greens - don't last through a solid frost, but we've been eating them through the fall. We've also been eating the kale, which will last through winter here on the West Coast (unless it gets... Continue reading
Posted Nov 17, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
We've had an extraordinarily sunny and warm spring here on the West Coast, and while we've raved daily and with great gratitude about the weather, one effect has also been to make our winter kale bolt to flowers a lot sooner than usual. Some of the flowers we keep for the sake of saving seed, but we also EAT the kale flowers! They can either be eaten as little green florets, like sprouting broccoli heads, or else you can eat the fully-developed flowers - a mildly sweet taste in a salad, or as a garnish. Or just pluck the flowers... Continue reading
Posted May 6, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
One of the great creative joys of helping people build food gardens, is the opportunity to design the garden from start to finish! So when a couple on the North Shore contacted us with their wish to have a food garden, we started by coming up with several designs. The first focusses on a central lozenge-shaped bed, with a perennial herb garden in the middle. The paths will be made of 1" river rock for a casual, organic feel, and several existing fences provide both shelter from the weather and in-built growing frames for tomatoes, beans, peas and squashes. The... Continue reading
Posted Apr 19, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
If you're among the avid gardeners who start their tomatoes indoors, you probably have some tall thin seedlings about now that look as if they'd fall over if nothing more than a fruit fly flew by too fast! But - and I know it's counter intuitive - if you pinch off your seedlings, they'll slow top growth long enough to focus on broadening and strengthening the stem, and on setting really solid roots. What you do is wait until the seedlings are sprouting their fourth REAL leaf (so, not counting the very first two mini-leafs they put out just after... Continue reading
Posted Apr 15, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
We have been getting a lot of requests for raised beds and balcony planters that are high enough for people with sore or aging backs to use comfortably. One of the easiest solutions is the double-high raised bed, which at about 20" puts a lot of soil a lot closer to reach. (For wheelchair gardeners, planters on legs - so that your own legs can fit underneath, allowing you to get closer to the planter - are an option that we also offer). Don't be fooled by Eric's posture in the photo: he's close kin to a giraffe, so he... Continue reading
Posted Apr 12, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
Onions and scallions are a great plants for container gardens, and they grow year round in our WEst Coast climate. Continue reading
Posted Apr 5, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
Our new woodshop is allowing us to offer top-quality outdoor woodworking, from custom planters and outdoor furniture, to garden sheds and beautiful, functional raised beds. Continue reading
Posted Feb 17, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
Valentine's Day is a great occasion to give your gardening beloved a unqiue FarmCity gift! We are happy to help you design exactly the gift you are looking for. For some ideas, check out our Gifts for Gardeners, including: A brand new raised garden bed filled with fresh, clean soil: A beautiful way to design a garden, and a practical gardening strategy in our West Coast climate, the benefits of raised bed gardening are many. A custom built planter - or suite of planters: A gorgeous design element in any garden, and essential for balcony gardening. And notice the attached... Continue reading
Posted Feb 3, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
We want our website to be as useful to our readers as possible - a true resource for information about garden design and upkeep. So we've added and updated a couple items: How to Compost: Composting is easy once you know how - but everyone has to learn somewhere. Our article explains the basics - and the principles behind them. Other articles include: Growing Food in the Shade and Taking Care of the Soil Balcony and Small-Space Gardening: Food gardening is for everyone! Even when you don't have a big yard to work in, you can still grow a surprising... Continue reading
Posted Feb 3, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
Great story. Danny Boyle would be lucky to get it.
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This January, it's been frosty, and foggy, and now we're back to rain again. But believe it or not, the gardening season has already started! Planning: There's lots to consider for the upcoming season: in recalling what crops your grew last year (where they were planted, how they did), you'll be working out what this year's crop rotation will be. You don't want to plant the same plants in the same place year after year, because the soil will have accumulated diseases and fungi particular to that kind of plant. So in order to keep down such pests as garlic... Continue reading
Posted Jan 24, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
FarmCity now offers expert garden consultations from Susan Stewart - a thirty-uear veteran of food gardening in Vancouver! Continue reading
Posted Jan 20, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
Among a wide range of vegetables in your winter garden, Brussels sprouts are a standout harvest! In our Vancouver garden, we planted them from seed in early July, then transplanted them to their winter beds in August. This worked out so that we harvested the sprouts on December 25th for Christmas dinner! The plants need to grow in full sun, but they are very cold hardy - and taste sweeter after a frost, since the plants produce their own natural antifreeze in our winter temperatures. (West Coast Seeds provides more information on how to grow them - and a slightly... Continue reading
Posted Jan 12, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
With our growing reputation as the local experts on custom planters and garden containers, FarmCity has recently added a woodworking shop to our set-up - allowing us greater precision and quality in creating some of the best garden woodwork in Vancouver! And it permits us to work year-round on your projects. One client bought herself a beautiful Christmas present, installed in early December: a suite of balcony planters, for both her upper and lower balconies. First, on both balconies, we installed the decking, replacing the cold concrete blocks with a friendlier, less industrial wooden surface. Then on the lower balcony,... Continue reading
Posted Jan 5, 2013 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction
October is a perfect time to sow garlic cloves on a sunny spot in your garden. Continue reading
Posted Oct 14, 2012 at FarmCity Food Garden Construction