Stephen Nicol, Langley Secondary science teacher, Amanda Smith, LEPS Agriculture Program coordinator, and Gary Jones, a Langley Sustainable Agriculture Foundation director and KPU faculty member have been involved in the new Learning Farm. (Nichole Marples/Special to the Langley Advance Times)

Stephen Nicol, Langley Secondary science teacher, Amanda Smith, LEPS Agriculture Program coordinator, and Gary Jones, a Langley Sustainable Agriculture Foundation director and KPU faculty member have been involved in the new Learning Farm. (Nichole Marples/Special to the Langley Advance Times)

Langley students already growing their knowledge at special learning garden

Langley Learning Farm project will teach high school students about agriculture and food security

The seed for the Langley Learning Farm was planted in the minds of the folks at the Langley Sustainable Agriculture Foundation and the Langley Environmental Partners Society at least three years ago.

Now the seed is growing. Construction has begun on the learning farm located at the Derek Doubleday Arboretum.

The Langley Learning Farm, located on parkland within the Agricultural Land Reserve, is a facility to demonstrate community-based food production skills, facilitate a student-led farm, and contribute to local food security.

Funding from the Farm Credit Canada AgriSpirit Award and the First West Foundation Community Endowment Fund has been secured, enabling groundbreaking.

“A partnership has been formed between the Langley Sustainable Agriculture Foundation (LSAF) holding the license agreement with the Township of Langley to utilize the land, and programming support provided by Langley Environmental Partners Society (LEPS),” according to LEPS’ executive director Nichole Marples.

At this point, the learning farm will be worked by nearby high school students. Grade 11 and 12 students from Langley Secondary School will go in small groups on a weekly basis to assist with project development and learn about soil and sustainability as part of an experiential learning Environmental Science course.

“he students began activity on the site in September,” she said. “The food grown will be donated to school food programs and social agencies.”

So far, 10 growing beds have been established and planted with overwintering crops, and a split rail fence is being erected. Fruit bearing hedgerow plants will be put in the coming month, and informational signage will be installed to inform public curiosity of the project as it develops.

“The Langley Learning Farm will continue to grow throughout 2021 and beyond, with the inclusion of a poly tunnel hoop house, which will help to extend the growing season, as well as provide shelter for educational programming on days of inclement weather,” Marples added.

The hope is that community pride will help the project flourish.

“As an open, publicly accessible farm site, just like a community garden, there is not much we can do to prevent theft or vandalism. We rely on the honour system and goodwill. The park gates are closed at dusk daily. The arboretum itself is quite well used, and we hope that park users will be our eyes and ears, reporting any theft or vandalism activity that they see,” Marples said.

The project has brought together various partners and supporters, including contributions from NATS Nursery, Linnaea Nursery and Seabreeze Farm.

“After a long time planning and discussing, we’re so looking forward to bringing a real hands-on experience to the students of Langley School District, in particular the first cohort of students from Langley Secondary School as we work together exploring the world of local food crop production, science and sustainability,” said Gary Jones, with the agriculture foundation and the Kwantlen Polytechnic University School of Horticulture. “In addition to funding and support from Farm Credit Canada and First West Foundation, Langley nurseries and growers have stepped up to provide plants and materials.”


Got a news tip?

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Velma MacAllister, coordinator of the Langley Christmas Bureau, sits behind a Plexi-glass barrier to check-in clients visiting the charity’s temporary location at Timms Community Centre at Langley City hall during the 2020 holiday season. (Joti Grewal/Langley Advance Times)
Langley Christmas Bureau aid makes for a ‘grateful mother’

Local charity hopes to support more families

A semi truck hauling lumber and a train collided on the tracks near the intersection of 256 Street and 88 Avenue on Friday, Dec. 4, 2020 around 3 p.m. (Google map)
Lumber truck and train collide near Fort Langley

It was a ‘mess’ but no one was hurt, deputy fire chief says

Submit letters to the editor through our website, via email or in writing.
LETTER: Langley City council lauded for anti-nuclear weapons stance

Money spend on weapons should be spend on health and education, peace advocates say

Children's backpacks and shoes are seen at a CEFA (Core Education and Fine Arts) Early Learning daycare franchise, in Langley, B.C., on May 29, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Our View: Heroes all around us in Langley

We highlighted a small fraction of the people going above and beyond in education

A snow moon rises over Mt. Cheam in Chilliwack on Feb. 8, 2020. Friday, Dec. 11, 2020 is Mountain Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Dec. 6 to 12

Mountain Day, Dewey Decimal System Day and Lard Day are all coming up this week

Robert Riley Saunders. (File)
First Nations Leadership Council demands justice for victims of B.C. social worker

Union of BC Indian Chiefs calls actions of Robert Saunders ‘nothing short of complete depravity’

Sept. 10, 2020 — In the photo is a W.L. McLeod student wearing a mask in a school bus, on his first day back-to-school. This year, due to COVID-19, students will have a different year than most. The President of B.C. Teachers’ Federation told Black Press Sept. 9, that she had a lot of mixed feeling about how ready the education system is for students to be coming back-to-school. Meanwhile, Libby Hart, Principal of W.L. Mcleod Elementary School in Vanderhoof said,” We know some of the families are still unsure, but most of our families have been great in connecting with us and talking to us.” Photos continued on Page 7. (Aman Parhar/Omineca Express)
‘Significant’ changes coming to Fraser Health school exposure notices

Surrey superintendent tweeted there will be 3 letters sent out to a school community

Demonstrators, organized by the Public Fishery Alliance, outside the downtown Vancouver offices of Fisheries and Oceans Canada July 6 demand the marking of all hatchery chinook to allow for a sustainable public fishery while wild stocks recover. (Public Fishery Alliance Facebook photo)
Angry B.C. anglers see petition tabled in House of Commons

Salmon fishers demand better access to the healthy stocks in the public fishery

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

(Hotel Zed/Flytographer)
B.C. hotel grants couple 18 years of free stays after making baby on Valentines Day

Hotel Zed has announced a Kelowna couple has received free Valentines Day stays for next 18 years

Farmers raise slogans during a protest on a highway at the Delhi-Haryana state border, India, Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rejected the diplomatic scolding Canada’s envoy to India received on Friday for his recent comments in support of protesting Indian farmers. Tens of thousands of farmers have descended upon the borders of New Delhi to protest new farming laws that they say will open them to corporate exploitation. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Manish Swarup
Trudeau brushes off India’s criticism for standing with farmers in anti-Modi protests

The High Commission of India in Ottawa had no comment when contacted Friday

Montreal Alouettes’ Michael Sam is set to make his pro football debut as he warms up before the first half of a CFL game against the Ottawa Redblacks in Ottawa on Friday, Aug. 7, 2015. Sam became the first publicly gay player to be drafted in the NFL. He signed with the Montreal Alouettes after being released by St. Louis, but abruptly left after playing one game. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Study finds Canada a ‘laggard’ on homophobia in sports

Among females, 44 per cent of Canadians who’ve come out to teammates reported being victimized

Nurse Kath Olmstead prepares a shot as the world’s biggest study of a possible COVID-19 vaccine, developed by the National Institutes of Health and Moderna Inc., gets underway Monday, July 27, 2020, in Binghamton, N.Y. U.S. biotech firm Moderna says its vaccine is showing signs of producing lasting immunity to COVID-19, and that it will have as many as many as 125 million doses available by the end of March. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Hans Pennink
Canada orders more COVID vaccines, refines advice on first doses as cases reach 400K

Canada recorded its 300,000th case of COVID-19 on Nov. 16

Most Read