Chester is more than our gardens

Chester is more than our gardens

This winter has to take some kind of prize for the extreme fluctuations in our climate locally, and from what I read in the press, across the nation as well.  Here, in Chester, for example, yesterday morning’s temperature started at 8 degrees Celsius (that’s  about 48°F for those of you using the old scale), and then gradually fell so that by this morning it read -11° C, that’s minus 11° C  (roughly  5° F).

A view of Chester's back harbour

 Gardening  stories are hard to come by in this weather so I thought it time to include some information about other attributes of Chester.  Our seaside village is located about 45 minutes from Halifax, Nova Scotia’s capital, and many Chester residents work in that city.  Many others are retirees or self-employed artists and artisans who maintain a relaxed schedule in the village and surrounding area, commonly known as the “South Shore.”  Chester was founded about 250 years ago and its history includes the standard fishing and trading opportunities, as well as a coastal battle won without a shot being fired.  Today, its attractions include sailing, golf, and live theatre productions.  One of the lesser-known facts about Chester, however, is the number of Francophones who make their home here, whether coming from local Acadian areas or from farther afield like Quebec or Europe. Children have the option of attending a French-language school, one of a number maintained in the province, and francophone adults (and wannabes) have the benefit of social interaction en français (I have now found the key to foreign accents in the WordPress fonts). 

Clotilde's petite fleur

To tie together the two apparently unrelated themes of this post (weird weather and speaking French), I am including a photo of a type of marigold that was blooming as late as December 13th in the garden of a francophone friend whom I met at un souper this week. By chance we happened to talk about gardens and she later sent me this photo. Perhaps that’s another pleasant attribute of this place we call home.  In our small village, many circles intersect.

Lots more information on other attributes of the village of Chester can be found at such websites as or     And in a brief nod to history from a horticultural POV, the Chester Garden Club was formed in 1939 to contribute to the beautification of the village.

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