Vacations are time to revitalize, to refresh and renew. That is certainly the case with our family trip to Gabriola Island in British Columbia. We are very lucky to have friends that own a home there, where we are welcome. Our trip to the island is an adventure in itself, the last leg of our journey being a small floatplane from Vancouver to Gabriola. Flying low above the ocean, the sea shimmers as the plane casts a shadow upon it. I stare into the depths mesmerized by the hopes of seeing a dolphin or a fish. Our landing into Silva Bay was a bit rough and two of us (I won’t name names… but it wasn’t me) didn’t enjoy the welcome we received by the high winds we encountered.
Arriving on firmer ground, the entire family seemed more relaxed; this place just doesn’t leave a lot of room for stressing out. The ocean, the pine trees almost down to the surf line, and the quiet of Gabriola forced us all to realize that nature is where it all starts. The next few days would be spent close to each other and all sorts of wildlife, so it was time to enjoy.
During our trip, I had quite a bit of time to enjoy the scenery. There are a lot of plants that I knew, and even more that I had the good fortune of learning about, since they are natives to that area. The island had been in a bit of a drought period, and it made me realize that Southern California although also in a drought is a little bit lucky. We are one of the places that know without a doubt… we have to have irrigation to make plants grow. Established plantings can weather drought, however newly planted beds need that extra bit of water now and again. Natives of course do better than most, so that itself is a good reason to plant them. So, when you are planting your beds, think… low water, natives and beauty and realize that you CAN have it all.