A garden for the family (and peace of mind)!

By Arbutus West, on Friday, March 23rd, 2018

As soon as the sunshine hits Vancouver, you can feel the city come alive. The streets, patios and hiking trails fill with people soaking up the sun. and so do the home and garden stores. After all,  what better way to enjoy the upcoming months of beautiful weather than in your own backyard paradise?

For those of us with pets, this time of year can be complicated – what’s beautiful and what can poison pets are often on the same list.  Never fear!  We’ve done some digging (pun intended) and put together a list of our favourites that are safe for you and your furry friends alike to enjoy!

Don't eat those daffodils pupper!!

Don’t eat those daffodils pupper!!

 

If you’re a flower fan, go crazy with any of the below varieties! Your garden will pop with colour, and will smell divine.
  • African Violets
  • Alyssum
  • Aster
  • Blooming Sally
  • Blue-Eyed Daisy
  • Snapdragon
  • Corn flower
  • Crape Myrtle
  • Creeping Zinnia
  • Feather Palm
  • Marigolds
  • Hibiscus
  • Impatiens
  • Magnolia Bush
  • Pansies
  • Petunias
  • Purple passion vine
  • Spider Ivy
  • Sunflowers
  • Tiger Lily
  • Zinnia
If you’re after pet-specific plants – dogs LOVE spider-grass! it’s an easy to grow, hard to kill, safe to ingest addition to your garden. Catnip is obviously a great plant if you’re so inclined – but be warned! Keep in a pot inside, or in limited quantities outside, unless you want to walk out into a sea of stoned neighbourhood cats every day. Also note that catnip should not be ingested by dogs, so keep out of reach if you’ve got a pooch in your family.  
 
If you’re like to harvest your own veggies, then there aren’t a lot of things that hold concern. It’s a good idea to avoid grapes, garlic and onions if you have a curious pet who may get into things while you’re not looking! This is especially advisable if your pup spends a lot of time outside without supervision. A little bit of boredom
 
We’ve picked some of our favorites below that will make excellent eating for you AND your pets: 
  • Berry trees and bushes! Mulberry and blueberries are great treats and grow well in our climate! Blackberry and raspberries are perfect for snacking through the summer. 
  • Herbs – Cilantro, sage and thyme are all pet-friendly! Bunnies and guinea pigs will go crazy for fresh cilantro in their diet. 
  • Vegetables – Broccoli, cauliflower, beans, peas and every kind of squash you can imagine! These provide beautiful colour as they grow, and having them fresh from your own garden makes such a difference to the quality and taste! 
  • Leafy greens – Kale, spinach, arugula and lettuce are so easy to grow, and provide essential nutrients for you and your pets! Pick while they’re young so they don’t grow bitter. 

cilantro-bunny

 

If you’re looking for something exotic, or a complete list of toxic/non toxic plants for your dog click here, or for you cat people, here. It’s a comprehensive list courtesy of the ASPCA.
We hope this helps you plan, and plant out a garden that the whole family can enjoy this summer!
Happy planting Vancouver!

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