Field Days 2016

2016 Field Days and Events:

RESCHEDULED: March 19, 2016
Golden Beet Seed Production Field Day

Beets are a biennial crop which require two seasons to set seed. After year one they are pulled from the ground and the best roots are selected for storage until they are replanted in spring. Come spring, the beet “stecklings” are pulled from storage assessed and then planted in the field as a seed crop.

And March 19, 2016 is planting day!
Time: 10:30 – 2:30


Join Dan Oostenbrink of The Local Harvest for a day of planting beets for seed production.

In this Field Day you will get hands on experience planting beets for seed production and Dan will discuss important aspects of Beet seed production such as:

  • Selecting and rogueing for the best roots
  • Storing beets over winter
  • Beet Pollination
  • Spring planting!
  • General beet production considerations

Also hear about other great programs happening through the Bauta Family Initiative on Canadian Seed Security and FarmFolk CityFolk!

Golden Beet Trials Field Day

When: June 30, 2016; 2:00 – 5:00 (followed by pizza dinner)

Where: Local Harvest Market, Chilliwack

Cost: $15 (includes pizza dinner!)


Join BC Seed Trials Lead Researcher, Alex Lyon from UBC at this Field Day which will focus on in-field observations and evaluation of golden beets. Golden beets are growing in popularity and hold the potential as a significant seed crop here in BC. This is a chance to get to know beets like never before!

We will look at 2 different beet fields at Local Harvest Farm:

  1. Golden and Chioggia Beet Seed Trials
    • This is an opportunity to observe and assess a range of traits in a diverse selection of 12 different Golden and Chioggia beet varieties and discuss your observations with researchers and other growers
    • Learn to identify various traits and recognize differences in each variety – then choose the ones you like best!
  2. Touchstone Gold Beet Seed Crop
    • This beet seed crop, Touchstone Gold, was selected and stored in fall 2015 by Local Harvest Farmer Dan Oostenbrink with the help and mentorship of Mojave Kaplan ofPlanting Seeds Project. Close to 900 Touchstone Gold beet “stecklings” were then planted out in March 2016 under the advice of John Navazio, manager of Johnny’s Selected Seeds’ Plant Breeding Program and will mature in fall 2016!
    • Observe this seed crop and assess it for its characteristics as a seed production crop

Don’t miss this great opportunity to enhance your seed production knowledge!

Unbeatable! Golden Beet Tasting

When: July 9, 2016:  9:30 – 12:00

Where: UBC Farm

Cost: $10


Join Alex Lyon – BC Seed Trials Lead Researcher, and Rob Cleland – Executive Chef at Ash Street Bistro, at UBC Farm as we embark on the most pleasurable part of our seed trials research – the tasting! Get your palette ready to experience a diversity of flavours and textures; get your eyes ready to experience a diversity of colours, shapes, and sizes; and get your pen ready to praise your favourites and reject your foes!

After the tasting, take a guided tour through UBC Farm to see all the different seed-saving projects with UBC Farm Seed Hub Coordinator, Mel Sylvestre.

Event Agenda:

  • 9:00 – 9:30 am: Pick up scorecards from registration/info table
  • 9:30: Introduction to UBC Farm, the Bauta Initiative and the BC Seed Trials
  • 9:45: Discuss concept of culinary breeding and prepare your palette to evaluate 10 different types of beets!
  • 10:00 – 10:30: beet tasting & scorecard evaluation
  • 10:45 – 11:00: Q & A; More tasting!
  • 11:00: Join seed-focused farm tour
  • 12:00 pm – onward: Enjoy the UBC farm Saturday Market!

Can’t wait to see you there!

John Navazio Workshops and Field Days


  • Nanaimo: July 19 and 20, 2016
  • Chilliwack: July 21, 2016


Nanaimo: Nanaimo Urban Farm

Chilliwack: Local Harvest Market

Join Organic Plant Breeder John Navazio for these two workshops and Field days to explore a range of plant breeding and seed production topics



2015 Field Days:

September 5, 2015:
Growing and Processing Good Quality Seed

Join UBC Farm’s Mel Sylvestre on a Seed Production Field Day as she takes us through the essential points to keep in mind in order to ensure you are producing good seed. Mel will also demonstrate some basic seed-processing methods using equipment suitable for the home or small-scale commercial seed grower.

Register Here!


September 18, 2015:
Carrot Seed Production in Isolation Structures

Join Jen Cody and Craig Evans on their Co-operative Farm in Ladysmith to learn how they are growing carrot seed in isolation to avoid cross-pollinating with Queens Anne’s Lace…

Register Here!


October 11, 2015:
Brassica Seed Production and Breeding

Join David Catzel of Fraser Common Farm Co-op as he shares his experience growing and breeding Brassicas – a popular crop at BC Farmers Markets and a fun crop to grow to seed


Register Here!




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