Category Archives: Garden tour

Extreme Salad Man Youtube Videos


A: Around the World in 80 plants talk in Hurdal, Norway in 3 parts with index to all the plants and topics covered in the film description:
Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

B: Stephen’s salad: a six part series following me around the garden collecting plants for a springtime extreme salad in mid-May, also fully indexed by plant names in the film description:
Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

C: Webinar on Winter and Hungry Gap Vegetables, March 2018:

The complete indexed Extreme Salad Man videos

Many thanks to Ane Mari Aakernes (<3) for putting this play list of Youtube videos she and Berit Børte (<3) made of me last year. All these videos have been shown before but if you click on “Show More” under each video you will now see a list of plant time links or index to each film. If you click on the time tag, it takes you straight to the part of the film I’m talking about that plant! Names are given both in Norwegian, English and Latin!!
First up in the play list is the 6 part film series “Stephen’s salad” where we wander around the garden in mid-May 2017 and pick many of the perennials, in prime condition for picking, which end up in an Extreme salad with 211 different ingredients!
The last 3 films, which are similarly tagged to make it easy for you to find a particular plant, are from the 3 hour Around the World in 80 plants talk at the Hurdal Ecovillage in Norway on 29th January 2017 (in English), a year ago on Monday!
In the picture of the production team:
From left to right: Extreme salad ingredients (all 211 of them), Ane Mari AakernesBerit Børte and ESM with the Trondheimsfjord beyond! 


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The VanDusen Botanical Gardens in Vancouver BC

After visiting the UBC botanical garden on 4th April 2018, I bussed across town to Vancouver’s better known more formal VanDusen botanical garden, although it’s a younger garden (from 1970) against UBC which was established in 1916. The rain started when I arrived and I didn’t have that much time. Nevertheless, here are a few impressions!

Hydrophyllum (water leaf / Indian salad) is one of the 80 in my book!

Mostly Edibles in the UBC Botanical Garden, Vancouver

On 4th April 2017 I visited the University of British Columbia botanical garden in Vancouver, Canada. It was more dfficult to find by public transport as I had imagined and smaller, but nevertheless an interesting garden with, in particular, a good collection of Asiatic plants. I’ve known of this garden for many years as I was a member of their garden forums, one of the most active on the net before Facebook:
Here’s an album of pictures I took, mostly, but not all, edible plants…and there’s not many gardens you can find breeding eagles!

Indigenous plant walk in Victoria BC

On 1st April 2017, I visited the Compost Education Centre in Victoria BC, Canada, where I’d enrolled on an indigenous plant walk around the grounds, lead by Ashley Cooper (Tsartlip First Nation) and is working to revitalize important cultural knowledge and practices in her community and beyond.
The centre has a small garden, but it is packed with many traditional and indigenous useful plants. It is a non-profit organization providing courses and workshops on organic gardening and composting in the Greater Victoria area (see Here are a few pictures and a couple of videos of Ashley talking about camas and stinging nettle!
The coastal peoples harvested and semi-cultivated the wild stands of camas, both Great camas (Camassia leichtlinii) which was commonest around Victoria and common camas (C. quamash). In Victoria, Beacon Hill (see separate post) was an important site as were small offshore islands, where soils weren’t deep over rock and hence easier to harvest (my garden is perfect in that respect!). The beds were divided into individual plots maintained over the generations by different families.
Camas is said to have often been the only source of carbohydrate in the past for these coastal peoples who mostly ate fish and meat. Each year, the plots were cleared of stones and were burned to maintain the meadows. The bulbs were steamed in earth pits to convert the inulin to easier digested carbohydrates.


Jondal, the Hardanger Academy and the Nordic Permaculture Festival 2018

It’s been announced that this year’s Nordic Permaculture Festival will be arranged between 12th and 15th July 2018  in Jondal at the Hardanger Academy for Peace, Development and Environment, which is located in western Norway next to the Hardanger Fjord in fantastic surroundings and not far from the famous Folgefonna glacier! About time then that I blogged about my visit there as part of the annual Perennialen (no. 3), arranged by Eirik Lillebøe Wiken of the Alvastien Permaculture LAND Centre on the other side of the fjord. On the first day of Perennialen III, Eirik took me on aday trip, first to the famous garden at Baroniet Rosendal and then on to Jondal. A blog about the visit to Rosendal will follow tomorrow!
See the photo album below:


Baroniet Rosendal

Barony Rosendal (Baroniet Rosendal) is a historic estate and manor house on the Hardangerfjord going back to the 1650s. As part of Perennialen III, on our way to Jondal, one hour’s drive away (separate post), we stopped at this famous garden on 8th August 2017 to do some edimentals spotting! Despite several attempts to visit over the years, I’ve never been before. This must be one of the most picturesque gardens in the world with the dramatic scenery surrounding it! I was particularly interested in seeing the naturalised stands of spiked rampion (vadderot), used as a vegetable in the past elsewhere in Europe (video). The climate is very mild, and the sweet chestnut trees were particularly impressive, perhaps the biggest in Norway? There are also several beds with historical vegetables. Here is an album of pictures of mostly edible plants and scenery!



Governor’s House Garden in Victoria BC

Continuing with another garden I visited in Victoria BC, Canada! My host Solara Goldwynn​  took me on a quick visit to the Government House Garden (from 1911) on 30th March 2017. The album shows a few pictures of the edimentals we found!
The garden web site is here:
Within the garden is some remnant Garry Oak (Quercus garryana) woodland, an endangered species rich habitat of which 95% has been lost.

Edibles in the Abkhazi Gardens in Victoria BC

The next garden I visited in Victoria BC on 1st April 2017! The Abkhazi Gardens were created by Prince Nicholas Abkhazi from Georgia and his wife from 1947, taken over by the Land Conservancy to protect the garden against property development.
With Kelly Kerr

Walk and talk at the Horticulture Centre of the Pacific

So much has happened this year that I haven’t had time to blog about several places I’ve visited this year….with a bit more time now I’m returning to my great trip to Canada in March and Victoria, BC. Solara Goldwynn, a local Permaculture Landscape Designer (Hatchet & Seed) had arranged a program for me including a walk and talk gig at the Garden of the Horticulture Centre of the Pacific, just 12 km from downtown Victoria! It’s a relatively young garden but full of interesting plants (far more interesting than the nearby world famous Butchart Gardens which doesn’t even merit a blog post!). It’s non-profit community focused garden with sustainable management practices. Here’s an album of pictures from the garden tour and talk – the participants preferred to stay inside and hear the whole lecture rather than going outside, so this album documents what we would have seen :)
Thanks to Solara Goldwynn for arranging this and great also to finally meet my friend Lara from Salt Spring Island!