Plant Fair

poster for HVRA 2019 Plant FairFor five years, from 2015 to 2019, the Harbord Village Gardeners celebrated the start of each growing season by holding a Plant Fair in early June on the south patio of Kensington Gardens Residence. People came to admire the plants being given away, confer with a designated Expert Gardener, and meet other gardeners. Our local sponsors were generous contributors of bedding plants and other garden material, as well as providing an ideal venue.

(Poster by Leslie Thompson, using a design by local resident Finn at age 6.) 

In 2020 and 2021, the COVID-19 pandemic closed Kensington Gardens to public gatherings. After 2022, the jumping-worm threat prevented informal plant-sharing. See the Gardeners’ webpage for other ways of celebrating the growing season, including a seed-sharing project that began during the pandemic and has burgeoned since. 

This page now outlines some of the joys and achievements of our five years of seasonal plant-sharing events, starting with the most recent. 

Photos from 2019 Plant and Tree Fair

In 2019, we combined the Plant Fair with a TreeForMe event where the Toronto Parks and Trees Foundation brought pre-ordered trees and shrubs for an expanded giveaway. A mild sunny day, dozens of helpful volunteers, and anticipation of a green summer made this a busy and successful occasion. At least 200 plants and 120 trees and shrubs have found new homes. Thanks again to Fiesta Gardens, College Home Hardware, and Kensington Health for their support of the event, and also to wonderful coordination by TreeForMe staff member Amy Howitt. Click on an arrow to start the slide show below. (Photos by Richard Longley and Gwyneth Pearce.)

Photos from 2018 Plant Fair

A wealth of plants was available on the Kensington Gardens south patio, and lots of people came to admire, stock up, discuss gardening, and socialize. Kate Hamilton kept busy as the designated Expert Gardener, and Nicole Schulman’s weed display was also popular. Over 300 plants were given new homes, along with an array of tools, pots, and books. Another success to be chalked up to the energetic volunteers from the Harbord Village Gardeners group! Thanks also to Kensington Gardens for hosting the event, and for the many donations from local residents, Fiesta Gardens, College Home Hardware, and Scholars Press. Click on an arrow to start the slide show below. (Photos by Ann Eyerman and Margaret Procter.) 

Photos from 2017 Plant Fair

We had more plants and gardening material than ever to give away, and crowds of people arrived to look at them and chat about gardening. Nicole Schulman set up a weed table (and gave us an online Weed Gallery), and designated Expert Gardener Kate Hamilton fielded the toughest questions (and gave us more online expert advice). It was too busy to take many photos, but here are a few. Click on an arrow to start a slide show.

Photos from 2016 Plant Fair

We needed rain, but did it have to come on Sun. June 5? We took shelter under the entrance canopy of 25 Brunswick, brightened by our new banner. Expert Gardener Kate Hamilton offered advice. Lucy the dog wasn’t as enthusiastic as the other visitors.(Photos by Roma Kozloff and Margaret Procter. Click on an arrow to start a slide show.)

Photos from 2015 Plant Fair

June 7 was a fine day to celebrate the start of a late planting season. Residents, visitors, and staff joined Harbord Village neighbours on the south patio of Kensington Gardens Residence to browse through plants, pots, tools, and books. The designated Expert Gardener Anne Gibson answered questions, and dedicated volunteers offered advice on the selection of free plants. (Photos by Margaret Procter. Use an arrow to start a slide show.)