We’re thrilled to be working with young farmer Ruth, born and raised in Barcelona, Catalunya who moved to Canada 13 years ago and has landed in Prince George, BC. She currently has a 1/4 acre garlic crop (and a newborn!) on leased land she found with support from the B.C. Land Matching Program.
How did you decide you wanted to lease land and what was your dream property?
I decided I wanted to lease out of necessity as I do not have access to the financial means to own a property big enough to grown my business – literally-. My dream property is a couple acres of land with modest living quarters 30 minutes away from a Wildfire Base. This is something my partner and I are currently working on finding and obtaining.
Tell us a bit about the property you are farming now.
The property where I am growing my garlic is beautiful, at the top of Cranbrook Hill and only a 15 minute drive away from my front door. This property also houses many animals – horses, dogs, cats, sheep, goats, lamas and a very cute donkey – bringing another level of life into my workspace.
What was the landowner’s vision for their land and how are you helping them to achieve that:
The landowner’s vision for their land is to slowly convert the bush into grazing space and allow for mine, and perhaps in the future, other plots of land to be dedicated to growing food for the local market. I am helping these owners to achieve that by currently using this piece of land to grow my garlic and setting up the beds in a regenerative fashion in order to accommodate future crops to be grown in the same space while nurturing the soil below.
What was your experience working with the YA Land Matcher:
My experience working with the YA Land Matcher for Northern B.C. was excellent and it is thanks to her that I am now growing my garlic crop. If it wasn’t for this program and her work I would have not found land on time to seed my garlic for this years harvest.
What was the most valuable thing about the B.C. Land Matching Program for you:
The most valuable thing about the B.C. Land Matching Program for me was the success in finding a spot to plant my garlic cloves in the fall of 2020 for the harvest of bulbs in the summer of 2021. I was also very fortunate that through my Land Matcher’s expertise, we sprouted a great relationship with the land owners who have been nothing but supportive in my endeavour.
Did you learn any lessons the hard way in your first season on the farm and what were they?
My first season growing garlic ran from Oct 2019 to Aug 2020. I learned many hard lessons during this trial run: from water pressure (too much water) and harvesting time management to finding agreement in decision making with the land owner at the time. These challenges and learning opportunities made me more confident entering this year’s growing season and armed me with my own experience to base my decisions on.
What excites you most about the future of your farm:
What excites me most about the future of my garlic growing career is continuing to learn the cycle of farming. I am most interested in Regenerative Farming and I am currently applying techniques to my current garlic crop that I believe will better the growing abilities of the land I am leasing and contribute to the environmental change necessary to keep our world green and nurtured for us and for the future generations to come.
Ruth found land through the B.C. Land Matching Program in summer of 2020, just in time to get the fields worked and plant her garlic beds. Ruth is currently growing: Metechi, Chesnok Red, Persian Star and Red Russian. We’re so excited to see hear her first full season has been going on this land. If you are interested in finding out more about Ruth’s garlic, and how to order some bulbs, email email@example.com.
Get in Touch!
Do you have land you’d like to lease to a farmer? Are you a farmer looking for land to lease? Learn more about the B.C. land Matching program here, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The B.C. Land Matching Program is funded in Central and Northern B.C. by the Province of British Columbia, with support from Patagonia.