About the Nursery Site

galetta@sympatico.ca, (613) 797 6257

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Galetta Rose Nurseries

closed for the

2018 season

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Galetta Nurseries in 1981; an abandoned gravel pit...
...and now!!
About the nursery site

Most of Galetta Nurseries has been established in an old gravel pit. The site was at one time one of the tallest hills in the area and was a favourite spot for tobogganing. The property contained a large glacial deposit of sand and gravel. In the 1950’s, it was mined for gravel and sand used on Regional Road 22 (the Galetta Side Road) and on Highway 17.

When the road was completed, the quarry was used as grazing area. When I bought the site in 1981, it looked like the surface of the moon: rocks, bare spots, and very little vegetation. So, in the early 1980’s, the entire property was planted with red pine and jack pine (in the drier and coarser areas), and with white pine in the areas with better soil. Since then, we have established a wide variety of other types of trees and shrubs throughout the farm.

We have a very wide range of soil types: river silt, pure clay, pure gravel, sand, and good clay-loam soil, often within 20 feet of each other. Underneath the retail nursery is about 15 feet of pea-stone gravel, about 3 feet above the water-table.

The nursery was established in the gravel pit in 1993. In addition to the retail sales area, another part of the quarry (about 2 acres) is devoted to growing plants in containers; there are three separate areas (of about 10 acres total) devoted to field-grown trees, shrubs and roses; and another rented farm (of about 60 acres - on your left as you first enter the farm) for field grown stock.

If you’re interested in a tour of the farm -- or if you’d like a group tour -- please let us know and we can arrange a convenient time.

About the ponds.

The mining of this site for sand and gravel in the 1950’s stopped when ground water was reached. The ponds and wetlands on the farm are the result of this mining. Over the years, the ponds have gradually naturalized and are now home to a wide variety of wildlife, including large numbers of frogs and turtles. There are four sets of ponds: a shallow pond behind the "shade house" greenhouse; a series of ponds just beyond the parking area; a wetland area at the far end of the quarry; and, a deep pond that will eventually become a new water garden area.

You are welcome to visit any of the ponds, but please observe the following rules:

  • The banks of the newly dug pond are not yet stable: please stay away from the edge.
  • Please do not touch any wildlife in the ponds: the skin of frogs and other amphibians is very sensitive to handling.
  • Please stay on the paths.
  • The ducks and geese may be noisy, but won't harm you.

The wetland area is very sensitive to damage: please avoid walking in this area until our boardwalk has been completed.

 Persons under 16 must be accompanied at all times when visiting the ponds.

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