There is always plenty to choose from at the Mill Bay Plantaholics plant sale. (submitted)

There is always plenty to choose from at the Mill Bay Plantaholics plant sale. (submitted)

Cowichan Plantaholics sale benefits important causes

For the past 12 years, the Mill Bay Plantaholics have held a plant sale to support charities.

Elaine Scott guest column

For the past 12 years, the Mill Bay Plantaholics have held a plant sale in Mill Bay to support a variety of charities.

Barb Kohlman, Sharon Martin, Ali Morris, Noreen Carver and Elaine Scott have been very busy and a wonderful selection of plants will be available for sale once again on Saturday, April 15. This year the money will be used to support two important activities. Part of the money will provide a secondary school scholarship for a young woman in Malawi, while the rest of the money will go to Somenos House in Duncan.

This annual plant sale has become well known to local gardeners as a source of healthy, interesting plants at a reasonable price. As well, master gardeners from the Victoria Master Gardener Association are always on hand to provide gardening advice. This year there will also be tables featuring drought tolerant plants and plants that are great for a pollenating garden. It is important for us to try to conserve as much water as possible but also to feed our pollenating creatures, as our local crops are so dependent on them.

The Malawi program supported by the sale is Atsikana Pa Ulendo (Girls on the Move). This program arose from the work of a Vancouver Island Woman (Christie Johnson) who worked in Malawi with a local Malawian teacher. The aim of the program is to achieve lasting improvements in the quality of life of young girls and women living in poverty and in so doing, spark a ripple effect of reduced poverty, illness, malnutrition, early marriage and gender bias. Many of these students after graduation become important role models and leaders in their communities. The contribution from the sale will provide an annual scholarship for one student. Information on the program can be found at www.malawigirlsonthemove.com.

The second organization to receive proceeds from this plant sale is Somenos Transition House in Duncan. A program of the Cowichan Women Against Violence Society, Somenos House provides short-term shelter and support when women (with or without children) need safety from violence and abuse. Providing a safe, supportive and quiet environment for women and children who are trapped in a violent situation is an extremely important program of a caring community — and Duncan and the greater Cowichan Valley is exactly that — a caring community. Information on Somenos House can be found at www.cwav.org.

So, come to the Mill Bay Plantaholics Plant sale and support two very important programs through the purchase of healthy interesting plants for your garden. The sale will be held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at 2836 Oceanside Lane, Mill Bay (east off Trans Canada Highway at Kilmalu, south on Church Way, east on Welch Road and south on Oceanside Lane). This is a private garden and customers can tour the garden at their leisure. The sale itself will be held at the top of the driveway. For more information email Elaine Scott at TheScottRogers@aol.com. Please note that only cash or cheques can be accepted.

Elaine Scott is a member of Mill Bay Plantaholics.