Spring is in the Air
Our thoughts turn to fresh-air pursuits, gardens and spring birds. Follow along and you’ll find creative and clever local craftspeople, artists and growers for ideas on how to enhance the moment.
The harbingers of spring never come too early. As the snow melts, the temperatures rise, and the daylight stretches out into the evening, our hearts soar. Our thoughts turn to fresh-air pursuits, gardens and spring birds. We can’t wait to rush outside. Follow along and you’ll find creative and clever local craftspeople, artists and growers for ideas on how to enhance the moment. Happy spring!
Bring a dose of spring inside with these cheerful, Scandinavian-looking “house birds” by wood artists Patrick Lajoie and Mara Minuzzo. They handcraft these, along with other art and furniture, in their Caledon headquarters, Studio Liscious. The birds stand 4 inches tall and come in a variety of made-to-order shades. (About $34 each, Studio Liscious)
A mini mansion
The only downside to this exquisitely crafted cedar bird feeder is that your neighbourhood fine-feathered friends may expect a miniature butler to emerge with a tray of drinks. Be sure to ask about the right mix of custom-blended birdseed here, though. That you can offer. ($200, Caledon Mountain Wildlife Supplies)
Eastern redbud welcomes spring dressed in a riot of pink. You can source this showy early-blooming tree [Cercis canadensis] from Not So Hollow Farm in Mulmur. Ian Payne and Viki Reynolds specialize in growing native trees, shrubs and plants. And mark your calendar: On June 20, Not So Hollow Farm hosts an event, Bees to Butterflies … and Beyond, as part of Pollinator Partnership’s Pollinator Week June 15–21 (pollinator.org). Check Not So Hollow’s website for more details soon. The farm opens May 1 or by appointment. ($14–$40 per redbud plant)
At home with the birds
The wrens, swifts and bluebirds are coming! For a rustic vibe, welcome them with a selection of barnboard birdhouses, which look great in a cluster. Caledon Mountain Wildlife Supplies owners Linda and Tony Kairys carry a wide range of feeders and houses made by local craftspeople. (Nesting box $63. Suet cake feeder $15)
Scrub away all that gardening grime with these crafty felted soaps by Inglewood resident Nell Crathern. She wraps her natural, handmade bars in felt for a naturally abrasive effect. ($10 each, Lucille Weber Gallery)
Mansfield potter Mary Lazier of Little Red Hen’s Kitchen Garden has captured all the impish charm of a baby goat with this three-legged, unglazed stoneware planter. She suggested primula would look springlike nestled in this cheeky planter for our photo – and she was right! (Planter $125. Primula, $4 each, Orangeville Flowers)
Have a seat
Need a perch from which to sit back and enjoy all your freshly planted flowerbeds? Caledon artist Ian Sinclair uses the natural shapes of found wood to craft quirky benches and stools that make a stylish statement – and a sturdy spot to rest. ($1,600, Lucille Weber Gallery)
At the size of a side plate, these whimsical spring florals by Inglewood painter Lucille Weber are among the smallest in her gallery, but they’ll add a major dose of spring colour to any room. ($85 each, Lucille Weber Gallery)
Your own vegetable garden may be but a figment of your imagination right now. But you can take inspiration from Mono’s Am Braigh Farm, where James Richards already offers crisp, juicy microgreens, including baby red Russian kale, mizuna, purple kohlrabi, red cabbage (pictured here) and red frills mizuna. ($4.75 a bag)
Am Braigh Farm, 873393 5th Line Mono. 519-941-9089.
Caledon Mountain Wildlife Supplies, 18371 Hurontario St, Caledon Village. 519-927-3212.
Little Red Hen’s Kitchen Garden, 796343 Third Line Mulmur. 519-925-2304.
Lucille Weber Gallery, 15612 McLaughlin Rd, Inglewood. 647-400-7591.
Not So Hollow Farm, 838369 4th Line East Mulmur. 705-466-6290.
Orangeville Flowers, 78 John St, Orangeville. 519-941-2592.
Studio Liscious, Caledon. liscious.com