Putting Yards to Good Use: Capital Greens

Image courtesy Capital Greens Urban Farm https://www.facebook.com/pg/CapitalGreensUrbanFarm/photos/

If you’d like to enjoy fresh, homegrown vegetables, make better use of your yard or garden and contribute to a local, sustainable food system in Ottawa at the same time, here’s an opportunity.

Capital Greens is a local business that transforms space in backyards into pesticide-free vegetable gardens. They do all the gardening work, and in exchange, yard owners receive some of the harvest every week. Capital Greens sells the rest to neighbours and local restaurants.

Capital Greens owner-operator Mathew Levinson started operations last summer in the Westboro/McKellar area, converting sections of lawn in area yards into gardens to grow leafy greens, tomatoes, peppers, carrots, beets, herbs and more.

Interested? Not sure? Capital Greens will provide a free yard appraisal to make sure the conditions and space will work. There’s more information and a contact form on their website. Some great pictures, too.

Let us know if you check it out!


Posted by Denise Deby. Thanks to Mathew Levinson, Capital Greens Urban Farm for the information.

Ottawa Veg Fest 2016

Written by Denise Deby. Thanks to Michael Calvert, Ottawa Veg Fest for the information and post suggestion.

Veg Fest composite image

Ottawa’s annual celebration of all things vegetarian and vegan happens Saturday, June 4 and Sunday June 5, 2016.

Ottawa Veg Fest is an exhibition of local plant-based food–including non-dairy cheeses, ice cream and chocolate, baked goods and meat alternatives–and other products and services. There’ll be samples of food, cooking demonstrations, speakers and information about local organizations and businesses.

Ottawa Veg Fest happens at the RA Centre, 2451 Riverside Dr., from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. both days. Admission is by donation, with proceeds going to local non-profits (last year the Ottawa Food Bank’s Community Harvest Program, and the National Capital Vegetarian Association).

Here are a few things the organizers would like you to know:

  • There are more places than ever in Ottawa to find great vegan and vegetarian food and other products—including new businesses Little Jo Berry’s, Rawlicious, Grow Your Roots and Thirteen Muesli, well-established options such as The Table Vegetarian Restaurant, Simply Raw and Planet Botanix, and lots of other food and personal care products and services. That’s reflected in the large number of exhibitors—more than 80—at this year’s Veg Fest.
  • Ottawa Veg Fest is for everyone, vegetarian or not: it’s a great place to discover local food producers and vendors.
  • Vegan food is anything but boring: “In reality, vegan food can be incredibly creative, flavourful, and reflect virtually any style of cuisine.”

Some things you can try at Ottawa Veg Fest:

International Foods

Very often international cuisines are a plant-food lover’s best friend. From Indian to African to Japanese, international foods open up new ways to eat your veggies. Visitors to Veg Fest will be able to sample and purchase food from Asian Stars, Baccanalle, and All About the Soup – which has a huge range of international flavours covered with its soups.

Comfort Foods

Sometimes it’s all about the presentation, but other times you just want filling and hearty options that remind you of the warming dishes of your childhood. Panago Pizza will be there serving vegan pizza, and The Table Vegetarian is renowned for its delicious and hearty whole foods comfort dishes.

Raw Foods

Just in time for summer, Veg Fest will be a great place to learn about the lighter fare that our bodies often want during the warmer months. You don’t want to miss SimplyRaw Express, returning as a sponsor, as well as new Ottawa vegan restaurant Rawlicious.

Baked Goods

Who doesn’t want to sink their teeth into a succulent cupcake, or enjoy the guilty pleasure of a cookie? You can find those at Veg Fest too! Both Strawberry Blonde and Sweet Cheeks bakeries offer entirely vegan and gluten free treat menus, and will be at Veg Fest with an array of their offerings.

Gourmet Foods

If you want the taste of dairy cheese but without any of the bad stuff, Nona Vegan Foods Limited and Fauxmagerie Zengarry are must-hit booths. Nona makes amazing cheesy sauces from cashews, and Zengarry is the country’s largest producer of fine cashew cheeses in nine different flavours! If it’s ice cream you’re craving, Oat and Mill will be there serving up and selling their oat-based ice cream, made right here in the Ottawa area. Last year they were one of the most popular attractions! And finally, Snell House Foods will have a great array of sauces and dressings – vegan and locally made!”

For more information about Ottawa Veg Fest, see their website.


Doors Open Ottawa, Giveaway Weekend and More

“Maplelawn Gardens” photo by Jeremicus rex – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Maplelawn_Gardens.jpg#/media/File:Maplelawn_Gardens.jpg

Written by Denise Deby.

There’s no shortage of things to do this weekend, June 6-7, 2015.

Doors Open Ottawa opens the doors to more than 120 Ottawa landmarks and interesting places. If you’ve ever wanted to see inside an embassy, an architecturally significant building, an artist’s studio, a greenhouse or a historic site, check the list (and schedule).

Giveaway Weekend happens June 6-7. You put household items you no longer want on your curb, mark them “free,” and people can take them away. (There are some restrictions—for example no cribs or car seats–so check the website for guidelines.) Lots of garage sales happen this weekend, too, so you might find something that you need (and keep it out of the landfill). Check OttawaStart or Used Ottawa for locations.

Saturday is also the Great Canadian Lemonade Standemonium, where people set up lemonade stands in neighbourhoods all over the city. The event supports the Ottawa Regional Cancer Foundation.

Ottawa Veg Fest is a celebration of all things vegan and vegetarian.  Organized by the National Capital Vegetarian Association, the event includes talks on health and sustainability topics, exhibits, food samples and cooking demonstrations. Admission is by donation.

Fletcher Wildlife Garden’s Annual Native Plant Sale is on Saturday, June 6. It’s the place to find native wildflowers and find out which plants are best for your yard or garden.

Velo Vogue’s Fashion Show is on Saturday, June 6. Get inspired to ride your bike, and check out local clothing and accessories, food and drinks. Proceeds support RightBike.

Random Hacks of Kindness might be your thing if you’re interested in brainstorming with others about environmental and social challenges. Participants will be designing apps for the Child and Nature Alliance of Canada, Ottawa Riverkeeper, VoteSavvy and other organizations from Friday, June 5-Sunday, June 7.

Part of the Magnetic North Theatre Festival June 4-13, The Global Savages (June 8-13) is described as an 18,000 year old story that presents the world view of Indigenous people, told by the Debajehmujig Storytellers, in outdoor performances that evolve as the storytellers engage with people and places. The Global Savages are also inviting people to join them early on Saturday, June 6 from 4:45 a.m.-8:00 a.m. for a Sunrise Walk on the Sentier des Voyageurs Trail from Gatineau to Ottawa.

Ottawa Veg/Yoga Fest 2013

Posted by Denise Deby.


Heather Garrod of Planet Botanix sent us word that the fifth annual Ottawa Veg Fest is teaming up with Ottawa’s first Yoga Fest this year.

At the Ottawa Veg/Yoga Fest,  local businesses will have displays on vegan food, yoga and related products and services. You can see the list of exhibitors here. Two films, Forks Over Knives and Vegucated, will also be shown.

Admission is by donation, with proceeds going to the National Capital Vegetarian Association, which founded Veg Fest, and Prevent Cancer Now. This year the festival is organized by the group Ottawa Local Motives.

The festival runs June 22-23, 2013 at Saint Paul University, 223 Main St., from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. If you go on Saturday you can also catch the Main Farmers’ Market from 9 a.m.-2 p.m.

More Eco-activities in Ottawa during April

Written by guest blogger Denise Deby, who writes on local and global social and environmental issues.

Here are more environment-related events this month that have come to our attention:

  • National Wildlife Week is April 10-16, with the Canadian Wildlife Federation’s second annual Walk for Wildlife. Events in Ottawa include a walk in the South March Highlands on Saturday, April 16 at 11 a.m. Meet at the corner of Klondike Rd. and Second Line Rd. Contact Deanna Wright at wrightjd@rogers.com for information.
  • ORIGINALS – The Spring Craft Sale, with over 180 artists, artisans and designers, runs April 14-17 at Lansdowne Park. Thursday, April 14 will feature a “green” fashion show with fashions and accessories made from recycled materials by Canadian designers (7 p.m.). The Sale runs Thursday and Friday 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
  • ECO EXPO: Ottawa Healthy Living Show will be held on Earth Day Weekend, Saturday and Sunday, April 23-24, from 10 am to 4 pm at the RA Centre, 2451 Riverside Drive in Ottawa. “Our mantra is: Go Green, Eat Local, Be Healthy.”  In addition to a wide selection of local exhibitors the show will include a series of informative workshops and presentations.
  • Earth Day Ottawa will hold a free concert with Amanda Rheaume and Jeff Logan on Thursday, April 21 7-9 p.m., and a children’s concert on Friday, April 22 1:30-2:30 p.m., both at the Museum of Nature. The Museum is free on Earth Day, April 22. See the Earth Day Ottawa website for other Earth Day events.
  • Diana Beresford-Kroeger, author of The Global Forest, will speak on the healing power of trees Thursday, April 28 at 7:30 p.m. at the Museum of Nature. Reserve on arrival at reception or in advance at 613-566-4791 or reservations@mus-nature.ca.
  • Just Food is offering beginner-level Organic Vegetable Growing Workshops at various locations around the city. Cost $5.00 or pay what you can. There’s one Wednesday, April 27 6-8 p.m. at the Centretown Community Health Centre, 420 Cooper between Bank St. & Kent St. Contact Susannah Juteau at 613-233-4443 x 2198 to reserve a spot. Check Just Food’s website for upcoming workshops on this and other food- and gardening-related topics.
  • Ottawa Veg Fest ’11, presented by the National Capital Vegetarian Association and The Table Vegetarian Restaurant will feature vegetarian (vegan) food. The festival will include over 30 exhibitors, guest speakers, a silent auction, food demonstrations and a vegan cupcake challenge. It takes place Sunday, May 1 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the Glebe Community Centre, 175 Third Avenue. Free admission.