Science Park at Science WorldScience World shares: the love of science, results from experiments, and the produce from the Ken Spencer Science Park gardens.

Thanks to a $15,000 Gardens for Good grant from Nature’s Path the outdoor gardens have been re-configured and expanded. The changes offer the gardens greater sun exposure and allowed for the creation of wheelchair-accessible garden beds. The gardens produce a wide variety of crops: spinach, potatoes, chard, beets, turnips, lettuce, tomatoes, quinoa, buckwheat, and more. When the crops are harvested, multiple times through the summer, all the produce is donated to the Downtown Eastside Community Kitchens (a program run by the Vancouver Food Bank). Last year an astounding 98kg was donated by the Science World gardens. While potatoes, beets and turnips are heavy, just imagine the quantity of the leafy greens that would have been part of that impressive tonnage. A huge amount of the green-good-stuff weighs next to nothing.

Insect hotel in the Science Park at Science WorldPlants aren’t the only growing things in the garden. Science World has created “homes” to attract pollinators of all varieties: bees, butterflies and even flies. There are also chickens. Four of them in fact: Downy, Gourd, Ember, and Betty Blue. Between the ages of 1 and 3 years, chickens are the best at laying eggs. The friendly beloved Science World chickens are a bit past their prime. However, last year they produced 88 eggs for the community chickens. Not bad for a bunch of old hens!

Nano house at the Science Park at Science WorldAnd if all that healthy goodness wasn’t enough for you, the Science World Ken Spencer Science Park also hosts the fascinating Nano House (tour times are posted inside Science World, or if the staff in the Science Park have time they’ll give you a tour).

Be sure to check out the garbage house. If that doesn’t get you hooked on recycling & reusing I don’t know what will. On a hot summer day, kids can’t get enough of the water park. While very little water hits the ground, just hearing the splashing wet-stuff makes the air feel cooler.

Salsa at the Science Park at Science WorldThis summer head to the Ken Spencer Science Park at Science World to learn about the many creative ways to produce food for your family. You will also pick up a few conservation tips as well. My favourite tip from our recent trip to the Science World gardens…the GrowOya pots embedded in the gardens. The company has taken an ancient gardening method and brought it into the 21st century. Their terra cotta pots are to be filled with water and then buried in the dirt. As there is no water evaporation the wet-stuff gets right to the roots. And you can feel extra good about adding a GrowOya to your garden as it is a Vancouver-based company! I need to get my hands on a few.