Winnipeg garden centres brace for busy spring as restrictions loosen

Click to play video: 'Warmer weather bringing out the green thumbs in Winnipeg' Warmer weather bringing out the green thumbs in Winnipeg
Seasoned gardeners and those who haven't handled a spade in twenty years are lining up together this year to shop for gardening supplies. As Global's Marek Tkach explains, the hobby remains available to nearly everyone even amid the pandemic – Mar 2, 2021

Garden centres around Winnipeg are gearing up for what’s expected to be a busy season.

The hobby remains available to almost everyone, unlike many other activities amid the pandemic.

“We love seeing this excitement,” said Ray Dubois, the owner of Ron Paul’s Garden Centre on St. Mary’s.

“People are coming in and they’re excited to just get their hands dirty.”

Read more: Gardeners in Saskatchewan growing more food in response to COVID-19: study

Dubois says many of his customers thus far have been people new to gardening or looking to return after a prolonged hiatus.

“We have people coming in that haven’t gardened in 20 years and are now getting back into it. They’ve turned part of their backyard into a garden, so it almost feels like a reinvigoration,” he explained.

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For Burt Skogan, hunting for seeds in early March has become tradition.

Burt Skogan at Ron Pauls’ Garden centre Tuesday afternoon. Marek Tkach / Global News

The long-time gardener visited Ron Paul’s on Tuesday, looking to kick off his spring growing season.

Read more: Greenhouses, plant centres stock up early in anticipation of another busy gardening year

“With spring coming, it makes you feel interested in looking for gardening things. When the weather was miserable, when the roads were icy, not so much.”

“I’d order from a catalogue but now I’m looking at greenhouses and seeing what’s new and just shopping for myself now,” said Skogan.

For those with thumbs not quite as green, experts recommend starting with tomatoes, basil or sunflowers.

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“Start slow. Make sure that with the crops you’re getting, you’re looking at your sow time to harvest,” says Dubois.

Click to play video: 'Lethbridge gardening centres anticipate another busy year' Lethbridge gardening centres anticipate another busy year
Lethbridge gardening centres anticipate another busy year – Mar 2, 2021

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