The Vanier Collective Gardens are open to all and volunteers always needed to sustain them!

Contact information below…

Online Calendar: Consult upcoming gardening sessions, workshops and other events happening on campus.

MISSION STATEMENT

The mission of the Vanier Collective Gardens has three branches:
Urban agriculture: empowering people living in cities to engage with nature and their source of food.
Education: providing a hands-on learning environment to develop life skills and learn about sustainability.
Community: building an affirming space that fosters collaboration and a sense of belonging.
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT: The Vanier gardens are situated on unceded Kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk) territory
which is also a traditional meeting place for many First Peoples.
RECONNAISSANCE: Les potagers de Vanier sont situés sur le territoire non-cédé du peuple Kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk) qui est aussi un point de rencontre traditionel de plusieurs Premiers Peuples.

What are the Vanier Collective Gardens about?

At first glance, the Vanier Collective Gardens are made up of a few planters across campus. In truth, they are much more than that! The Collective Gardens are a place of exchange, where the Vanier Community comes together and participates in a collective effort for sustainability, food security, biodiversity and well-being.
The results of this work are the plants that grow and that are enthusiastically harvested at the end of the season, including vegetables such as cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchinis and peppers, herbs like basil and cilantro and flowers like marigold. See also Edible plants, Trees on campus, Wild birds on campus, Benefits of Herbs on Vanier grounds. Moreover, the Indigenous Garden is home to various medicinal plants and is symbolic of the land on which the Gardens stand. Plasticulture and composting are also part of the Gardens.
The Gardens cannot be sustained without volunteers. Everyone is welcome, with or without experience. Each volunteer is involved to the extent and in the way that suits them, and is motivated by different reasons, such as the stress relief, health benefits, or sense of purpose that gardens provide. Being part of the Gardens can help one develop leadership skills and stay grounded, and it is an opportunity to form new bonds and to learn from others. Additionally, volunteering in the Gardens is a qualification for the Sustainability Major and the S.T.A.R. program. It is a fun and convenient on-campus volunteer opportunity.
Apart from volunteers, teachers and clubs are encouraged to enjoy and connect with the Gardens by using them as a meeting place, an outdoor classroom, or a place to discuss the themes of sustainability, health, social justice or biodiversity. Resources for teachers who are interested in involving the gardens in their class activities are available.
 Collective GardenView our other videos: http://www.vaniercollege.qc.ca/sustainability-major/videos

About the Vanier Gardens:

Guide for Teachers & Staff: How to use the Gardens in your Pedagogy

Educational Material:

Find out what Vanier members say about the Gardens!

Spring-Summer 2018 news: 

  • Myriam Mansour, Geography teacher, has received for the third year in a row official support from the college for the garden project “Vanier Collective Gardens as a Pedagogical Avenue”.
  • For the third year as well, a grant from Summer Job Canada has allowed hiring Bruce Wong, a former Vanier student, as the Garden Coordinator, and Nikolas Dafniotis, a Science student, as the Garden Intern.
  • NEW: Thanks to a grant from Entente Canada-Quebec with the aim to develop the social, inclusion and diversity component based around the gardens, two Vanier students were hired for the summer to work in close collaboration with the gardeners. Myriam Lizotte, a Science student, was hired as the Garden Community Animator and Alexandra Stoica, a Psychology major student, as the Intern. Myriam and Alexandra will continue to work with the garden team thoughout the fall semester.
  • Together all four students organized workshops, gardening sessions, community salad session and numerous outings to other urban gardens around Montreal, including Concordia City Farm, Dawson gardens, the Montreal Botanical gardens.
  • NEW: The “Adopt a Garden Box” project launched in the spring allowed members of the Vanier community to decide what would be planted in the Open Garden plant boxes. A total of 32 people (students, staff and teachers) signed up and on May 30th a major planting session took place with over 20 participants (see video above).
  • NEW: The Open Garden also got an additional planter: a brick Herbal Spiral garden was built by the summer student gardeners.
  • NEW: The water collection system was improved with a gutter on the shed, by a team of students, as part of their French course La planet en danger.
  • NEW: An Insect Hotel as built, by another team of students, still as part of their French course La planet en danger.
  • The vegetable “Plasticulture Garden” in front of the sports complex has been cultivated as in the past, with rows of plastic over the soil, and continues to be a highly successful and productive planter on campus.
  • The “Biodiversity planter” in front of the Sports Complex has been replanted with a variety of perennials with the help of volunteer students as part of their summer class.
  • The wall-side edges all around the N building planters have continued to embellish the college grounds with an impressive diversity of plants.

    Overall, the college grounds are increasingly fostering biodiversity while providing an invaluable learning environment to the entire Vanier community.

Contact us:

HISTORY & ARCHIVED NEWS

Background:

The Vanier Collective Gardens were started informally in 2008 by Evelynne Barten, a technician in Environmental Wildlife Management, and were officially inaugurated in May 2014. The main garden was located in front of the A Building from 2014 to 2016. In 2017, the main garden area has moved to the back of the college, between the N and the Old building.

Spring-Summer 2017 news – Infrastructure:

  • The main garden that used to be located in front of the A building from 2012 to 2016 has been moved to a new location along the path between the N building and the Old building. The college has invested in the construction of this “Open Garden” which comprises the garden shed, compost bins, a work-table, an outdoor sink and counter, a water outlet, 8 low planting boxes and one elevated planting box for wheelchairr access.
  • The K planter located behind the Old building has been redesigned as a Permaculture garden with a focus on Medicinal Herbs.
  • The vegetable “Plasticulture Garden” in front of the sports complex has been cultivated as in the past, with rows of plastic over the soil, and continues to be a highly successful and productive planter on campus.
  • The “Biodiversity planter” in front of the Sports Complex has undergone a weed removal process over the past year to eliminate bindweed and awaits to be replanted with a variety of perennials this Fall.
  • The wall-side edges all around the N building planters have continued to embellish the college grounds with an impressive diversity of plants.

   Spring-Summer 2017 news – Coordination and Volunteers:

  • Myriam Mansour, Geography teacher, has received for the second year in a row official support from the college for the garden project “Vanier Collective Gardens as a Pedagogical Avenue”.
  • Janella Snagg-Romeo, a Health Science student, has been rehired as the Garden Coordinator for a second summer in a row. Janella is in charge of maintaining the gardens, assessing their needs and helping them “grow”, as well as managing the volunteers and being responsible for related paperwork.
  • Shazia Ramnal, a Social Science student, has been hired as a part-time Garden Intern to be trained by and assist the Garden Coordinators throughout the summer.
  • Many volunteers among Vanier students, staff and teachers have partaken in the growth and maintenance of the garden throughout the spring and summer.

Spring 2016 news:

  • Myriam Mansour, Geography teacher, has received the college’s support for the garden project entitled: Vanier Collective Gardens as a Pedagogical Avenue.
  • Janella Snagg-Romeo, a Health Science student, has been hired as the Garden Coordinator for the summer, thanks to a grant from Canada Summer Jobs 2016. Janella is in charges of maintaining the gardens, assess their needs and help them “grow”, of managing the volunteers and is responsible for related paper work.

Summer 2016 update:

  • The identification and labeling of edible plants around campus continue to expend.
  • A new fence structure has been built in the Shed area to protect the “Veggie Garden” from rodents.
  • We acquired 2 large pin boards from Student Services allowing for various information to be posted.
  • Gardening sessions are being held several times a week and are announced via Mail Chimp and on facebook.
  • Other special sessions such as “Salad” sessions (with freshly harvested herbs from the garden) and workshops (such as the composting) are held regularly.

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