For the first time in a decade, the Terrace Garden Tour blossomed back to life on Aug. 13 as a self-guided, by-donation event through the city’s 2023 Riverboat Days festival, drawing gardening enthusiasts from across northwest B.C.
The tour, featuring nine diverse gardens, raised more than $1,200 for the Terrace Community Garden.
Terrace city councillor Dave Gordon, one of the main organizers behind the tour and whose own garden was among those featured, expressed his delight.
“The Terrace Garden Tour ran for about 18 years and petered out due to challenges with volunteering,” Gordon explained. “This year, we decided we could bring back the whole tour without a whole lot of effort by making it self-guided and free, avoiding all the needs for tickets and ticket checkers.”
Moe than 200 people, including visitors from Prince Rupert and Kitimat, participated.
“We didn’t have to issue maps to people anymore as well because nearly everyone carries a cellphone in their pocket. Modern technology made the process quite easy for us to deliver without a lot of volunteer help,” said Gordon.
Gardens showcased a range of styles and sizes, from front-yard plots to sprawling commercial landscapes to inspire participants with what can be grown in the region.
“A couple of gardens were just front yard ones, while others were an acre or more,” Gordon said. “We had a good mix of food and flower gardens, as well as a couple commercial ones.”
Looking forward to next year’s event, Gordon confirmed that it will remain by donation and will feature all-new gardens. A committee will be formed to seek and select up to 10 gardens for the tour, and some adjustments might be made.
Gordon emphasized the importance of the tour as a community-building opportunity rather than a money-making event.
“There’s all sorts of gardens — little pots in your front yard or on your patio to multi-acre ones that people spend thousands to landscape to community gardens where people work at them full-time — and the tour was a good opportunity for people to get out and see what’s possible and gain inspiration for their own place,” he said.
Viktor Elias joined the Terrace Standard in April 2023.