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Two children are sole members of the South Malahat 4-H’s Garden Club

Sheila Jones and her 11-year-old children Katie and Dominic van Oort stand amid Dominic’s Scarlet runner beans, along with strawberry plants grown by both children in the family’s backyard. The bumper crops came at the end of the van Oorts’ second year in the South Malahat 4-H garden club – a group in which they hope to welcome new members this month. Photo by Natalie North.

Kids keen to get hands dirty in BC Club

By Natalie North
Saanich News, British Columbia
January 09, 2013
(Sheila Jones worked for City Farmer in the 1980’s and helped build the Strathcona Community Garden. Mike)


Dominic van Oort likes to take a stroll around his backyard, packing strawberries, tarragon, tomatoes and other fresh herbs he’s grown into kale leaves fresh from his garden. There he has it: a homegrown snack he’s dubbed the “outdoor sandwich.”

But don’t let the 11-year-old’s zest for freshness overshadow his keen eye for all things culinary.

Dominic and his twin sister Katie, the two sole members of the South Malahat 4-H’s Garden Club, aren’t just expert gardeners, they’re budding chefs, augmenting their meals with homemade berry vinegars, apple lemon jelly, mint and chive pesto, fresh salsa or a fennel, dill and tarragon white bean dip – all prepared themselves with food they’ve learned to grow on their own.

“I thought it was great to be able to make your own food,” said Dominic, between comments on how the late spring killed his squash season and the size of his rainbow tomatoes.

Read the complete article here.