Winner Category 2
Francois Lehodey of Edmonton, Ab. for the best container garden.
With a glorious celebration of Red and White, even the tomatoes take center stage in Francois Lehodey’s massive container garden! Filled with petunias, zinnias and geraniums, Francois’ Celebration is overflowing with Canada’s colours! Francois, who has been gardening for over 40 years credits much of his gardening knowledge from his mother. He also has inherited her deep care for sustainability and helping those in need provide for themselves. His parents have provided the motivation every year to grow fresh foods and he currently belongs to the Jardin communautaire Campus Saint-Jean Community Garden. A bilingual group open to staff, Résidence Saint-Jean students and members of the surrounding neighborhood. To this day he continues to volunteer, helping distribute for greenhouses for Sustainable foods Edmonton for generations growing and gardening together.
Francois drives for Greyhound and teaches flying lessons in his spare time so he has to fit his gardening hobby into an already busy schedule. As well as providing vegetables for his table, gardening also has a very relaxing effect on him and helps alleviate the stress of his day to day life.
Francois has taken a keen interest in sustainability and is deeply committed to making use of the abun-
dance that we have in our country. He has found that stores and greenhouses either sell off or even throw away damaged or poorly performing plants so he has been able to purchase vegetables and other plants at reduced prices and plant them in community gardens where they have thrived and produce vegetables to feed many. With so many people starving in other countries, Francois has found ways for Canadians to sustain themselves for the least amount of money and takes pride that the TLC he provides for his container garden sustains him over the entire season!
Francois also conserves water by collecting rainwater in barrels. He feels that it is better for the plants to use rain water and that they thrive on it. He was taught how to grow plants in five gallon pails and used that technique for his expansive container garden. As you can imagine, it was a huge commitment of time for the Canada 150 project. With over 15 containers to plant and care for and a schedule that required him to be away for days at a time, Francois made sure that he watered just before he left and as soon as he returned and was fortunate to get rain at some opportune times!
Francois sees the red and white of his container garden as an opportunity to mark the 150th anniversary of our great country. He says, “Canada’s Sesquicentennial is an important moment for our country, our communities, and a reminder to many people who call Canada home. Canadians are setting their sights on the horizon, and we show our pride as a forward thinking progressive country.”
Francois' container garden featured vibrant red and white petunias, zinnias and geraniums.
Francois Lehodey of Edmonton, Ab.
The container garden features an abundance of vegetables and herbs.
Francois enjoys gardening for it's therapeutic effects, as an antidote to his busy lifestyle.