Welcome to our Garden Tour Series. A place we will share stories of beautiful farms and gardens, of food growers and designers we encounter on our travels. From quirky yards in Malta, big farms in Canada to food forests in Bali, I will share it all. Kettle on, sit back and enjoy…
It is not often that whilst travelling you arrive at a place that feels like home. A place that evokes emotion, an instant warmth and familiarity. This is Duck Creek Farm on Salt Spring Island in British Colombia, Canada. A place where even edges exude character and story. Where the trees tell tales of well-tended land, love- filled mornings, family harvests and hard working passion. No suffocated weeds here, no forced growth, just nature guided to be the best it can be.
Duck Creek Farm was founded 26 years ago by the late John Wilcox, a sixth generation farmer, activist and mentor. His partner, Sue Earl is now farmer-in-chief of this mesmerising 13 acre farm with market gardens, orchards, forested land and residence. Famous for their garlic, but also their seriously juicy kale, leafy greens, basil, carrots, cucumbers, beets and potatoes.
The farm is a playground for the senses. Colour-filled maple poles left over from ceremony, biodynamic garden beds with names of goddesses and chakras, apple trees planted on perfect slope and contour, a tipi nestled at the rear end of the property, a scarecrow dressed in gypsy (Sue called it The Scarecrown), a school bus turned into a fully-furnished dwelling and a welcoming home with warm tea and chats of shared dreams, family and growing food.
Behind the magic of this place is the man who started it all. His finger prints lay rest in rich soil, and his legacy blossoms in trees and harvest.
All gardens, big or small, tell a story of their custodians. I’ve tried capturing some of this here. But there were moments, and scents, colourful nooks and crannies that need to be seen and experienced. If your journey takes you close by, make your way here, ask for Sue and some Bengal Spice tea.