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Gardening without chemicals

Residents may be surprised to learn that every Langley home is located in the middle of salmon habitat, because Langley is a township of watersheds. 

Each of its 12 watersheds collects runoff from backyards and directs it into one of Langley’s salmon-bearing streams, said Nichole Marples, executive director of the Langley Environmental Partners Society.

These streams serve as a crucial link in the lifecycle of Pacific salmon. 

The Fraser River salmon run — the largest in Canada — depends on the Fraser’s small tributaries for spawning and the healthy development of young fish.

“The upshot is that what we put on our gardens ends up in our streams, including pesticides and fertilizers,” Marples said.

“In addition, the majority of Langley’s tap water comes from aquifers, meaning that our drinking water originates directly below our feet. 

“When you consider that 95 per cent of pesticides used on residential yards are considered probable or possible carcinogens by the US Environmental Protection Agency, there’s good reason to cut back on the chemicals we use in our gardens.” 

This worrying evidence doesn’t mean that gardens have to be sacrificed the bugs. 

To help avoid this,  LEPS is presenting a seminar on how to grow a beautiful, healthy and productive garden without chemicals.

Linda Gilkeson, author of several books on organic gardening and pest management, fruit tree expert Laurelle Oldford-Down, and Catherine Dale, an award-winning master gardener and educator, will present hands-on workshops on creating the garden of your dreams.

Participants will learn how to manage pests, weeds, and diseases, incorporate edible landscaping, care for fruit trees, and how to build healthy lawns and soil.  

The seminar will run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, March 19 at the Langley Township Civic Facility, 20338 65 Ave.,  in the fourth floor Fraser River Presentation Theatre.

Admission is $5 and includes a light lunch. 

Attendees are asked to RSVP by contacting 604 533 6090 ext. 1671 or emailing   ocarnrite@tol.ca.