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Spring is (Almost) Here!

Imagine a summer without watering, mowing, weeding, or any of the other time consuming work required to maintain conventional landscaping. Imagine your yard as a living ecosystem filled with food producing plants such as fruit trees and vegetables, teeming with beneficial wildlife like bees, birds, and butterflies.

Our Certified Permaculture Designers can transform your outdoor space into a resilient, sustainable, and low-maintenance landscape. Residential or commercial, soft- and hard-scape, we will work with you to create a beautiful, edible landscape which will nourish the body and the soul.
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Permaculture Feature

Backyard Hens: More Than Eggs

When people think “backyard chickens” they often think “eggs”. We believe that with a little imagination and the right application of permaculture principles these wonderful birds can enhance your yard and life far beyond being a backyard source for your breakfast scramble.

Many permaculture principles come to mind when we think urban hens: “obtain a yield”, “use & value renewable resources & services”, “produce no waste”, “use edges & value the marginal”. The principle “integrate rather than segregate” however, gets to the core of our holistic approach of cohabiting with hens. We can achieve a balance between the needs and yields of the flock with the needs and yields of our lives that results in a symbiosis greatly exceeding the benefits of a conventional grain feed for eggs exchange.

Learn how backyard hens can feed your community while maintaining and regenerating the soil and controlling pests on the Spruce Permaculture Blog.

Chickens 101

Chickens 101 is an introduction to Urban Hens and is approved by the City of Edmonton to meet the standard of training required for urban hen licence applications. Register through River City Chicken Collective for their March 15 or March 31 offering.

Plant Feature

King Stropharia

Our first plant feature of 2020 isn't actually a plant, but a fungus. King Stropharia are simple to cultivate and excellent at purifying and regenerating soil through a process bioremediation. They have been shown to improve accumulation of organic matter and aid in the retention of nutrients in soil. They are also able to neutralize harmful pathogens such as coliform bacteria (including E. coli).

Stropharia will fruit prolifically under the right conditions, producing an abundance of food in a short period of time in a relatively small space. Described by the Mushroom Forager as having a rich mushroom flavor with undertones of potatoes and red wine, similar to a portobello mushroom but cranked up to eleven. These 'garden giants' are great for building hearty soups, rich risottos, and savoury stir-frys, or as mushroom pulled 'pork' using this simple recipe.

Imagine being able to get delicious, nutritious food from your own yard with a 'grocery store outside your door'. That is what a permaculture landscape can do for you.

Site Feature

Lacombe Park Community Garden

Earlier this year plans for the new Lacombe Park Community Garden were unveiled at Grace Family Church in St. Albert. The project is part of a larger initiative proposed by Pastor Michael McElroy to transform the church lands into community gathering space. The site is already host to the St. Albert Tool Library and will soon be filled with fruit trees, flowers and weed-control crops such as potatoes and strawberries. Guests will harvest or tend to whatever plants they want as they learn about local food production and how to help pollinating insects.

Garden Committee co-chair Elwira Rosiak said “We want to show people that you can feed yourself without putting in an exorbitant amount of hours working on a pristine garden,” The garden committee is now seeking volunteers for a 'permaculture blitz' on April 25th  as well as donations of logs and edible plants. Email for details.

Events & Workshops

Seedy Sunday

Spruce Permaculture will be at Seedy Sunday March 22 at the Central Lions Recreation Centre to present a workshop on permaculture and gardening. Come down and say hi!

Family Bee Workshop

A fun workshop on bees for the whole family. Learn about ways we can help pollinators and build a bee hotel to take home March 7 11:30-2:30. $10 per family. Hosted by The Hive Urban Community Agriculture and Alberta Avenue Community Centre.

Green Drinks: Food and Climate Change

Global systems of food production, distribution and consumption account for a huge chunk of global greenhouse gas emissions and cause deforestation, loss of biodiversity, and declining water tables. Fundamental changes to our food system are required to provide enough food for all without destroying the planet. March 18 at Dewey's on the University of Alberta campus.
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