Jelena Putnik shares her backyard garden using a garden-matching resource from the Young Agrarians. The resource connects property owners with people looking for space to grow food or plants. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

Garden-sharing map connects Victoria landowners and gardeners

U-Map created by Young Agrarians after COVID-19 created uptick in garden matching requests

A new mapping system helps connect Greater Victoria property owners with gardeners looking for space to grow.

The Young Agrarians, a nation-wide non-profit farmer resource organization, has extended its farmland mapping program to include both rural and urban gardens, centralizing information for those looking for garden space to use and those with garden space to share.

The U-Map shows locations of gardens and farms with extra space or in need of helpers, listing the size, type and nature of the land for those looking, who can also post specifics of what they want. So far only a handful of Greater Victoria locations are listed, but community education coordinator Azja Martin hopes that will change.

“In light of COVID-19, we really saw an uptick in the number of people who were looking to get their hands into soil in urban settings,” she said

. “People wanted to take action … to help support their own food supply and also just being engaged in supporting our whole community in that.

READ ALSO: Victoria duo tackles food insecurity in Victoria with burlap sack gardens

Victoria’s Jelena Putnik can vouch for the benefits of sharing her outdoor space. Among fresh lavender, bean poles, nodding onion, parsnip, potatoes and unruly raspberry bushes, Putnik’s yard is bursting at the seams with life and growth. But she said sharing the space has offered a new kind of bounty.

In the last few years, Putnik has shared her Fernwood garden space with a few different people. Last year an older woman grew some food, and this year a PhD student is spending some time in Putnik’s garden.

“For the older woman it was connection and community, for the younger woman it [is] de-stressing,” Putnik said. “It feeds us all.”

Putnik negotiated different agreements for different gardeners based on bounty, costs and goals. Some only wanted a small portion of land, while others were looking to grow a substantial amount of food. The joy of sharing, she said, is finding a way that everyone gets what they need.

“Your hands are in the soil and you just calm down – it’s an incredible de-stresser. For different people it does different things.”

READ ALSO: Victoria’s community garden plots a hot commodity


Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email:
nina.grossman@blackpress.ca Follow us on Instagram.
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Capital Regional DistrictCity of Victoriagarden lifegardening

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

Just Posted

Mysterious Brazilian honey barrel appears at Saanich intersection

Barrel spotted on West Saanich Road part of intersection construction project, district says

Flaming object thrown through Victoria restaurant window

Police looking for any witnesses to early-morning incident

Lost dog reunited with family three months after going missing along Juan de Fuca trail

‘The poor thing was skin and bones,’ says one of the Sooke rescuers

Victoria family donates 878 falafel wraps to support Beirut blast victims

Wrap and Roll pulls in $20,500 during weekend fundraiser

STANDING TALL: For some, B.C.’s forest industry is the best office in the world

A look at the forest sector in B.C. – and those hoping for the best – amid mill curtailments

Feds offer ‘life preserver’ funds to BC Ferries as pandemic sinks revenue

For every dollar the province spends the federal government will match

Bad behaviour at B.C. restaurants ignites campaign calling for respect

“If you can’t follow the rules, then stay home,” says BC Restaurant and Foodservices Association

Addition pending to Cape Scott Provincial Park?

BC Parks will wait before announcing plans for nearly $1 million old growth land purchase

Over half of Americans oppose Trump tariff on Canadian aluminum: survey

The survey was conducted Aug. 7 to 9 among 1,513 Canadians and 1,003 Americans

Oh baby, what a birthday gift: $2.8M raised to help B.C. boy with rare disease

‘We are very thankful to everybody,’ Aryan Deol’s father says

‘Huckleberry’ the bear killed after B.C. residents admit to leaving garbage out for videos

North Shore Black Bear Society said it was local residents who created a ‘death sentence’ for bear

Police investigating after insults, expletives yelled at federal minister’s staff

A 90-second video circulating on social media appears to have been shot by the person who was yelling

Central Vancouver Island’s Green Mountain fire under full control

Fire fighters still monitoring site between Cowichan Lake and Nanaimo River

Most Read