Gardener Jack Oja in his stunning waterfront garden which is one of the properties included in the Art Gallery’s Garden and Art Tour July 7-8..

From gravel and weeds to a stunning Campbell River waterfront garden in eight years

Jack Oja’s garden is among the 10 local properties featured on the Campbell River Art Gallery’s Garden and Art Tour

When Jack Oja moved into his Willow Point oceanfront home eight years ago, he had a gorgeous sea view, but a garden full of gravel and weeds.

Oja’s garden is among the 10 local properties featured on the Campbell River Art Gallery’s Garden and Art Tour Saturday and Sunday. The self-guided tour runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days.

Oja had always liked house plants, particularly cactus, but he had never had a big garden before. He started studying gardening books, met with a designer, hired a local nursery to oversee installation, and within a remarkably short time, created a truly magnificent garden overlooking the beach.

“Eight years ago, it was barren, you wouldn’t recognize it at all compared to what it is today,” Oja said.

Oja’s garden, which he describes as “a terrace with sides,” is a riot of colour, with campanulas, thyme, California poppies, foxgloves and much more.

“It’s quite a palette,” he said, looking around his property.

The garden is completely accessible and features gorgeous winding concrete paths in and amongst the flower beds. This is the second time Oja’s garden has been featured on the Campbell River Art Gallery’s Garden and Art Tour, and he recommends the experience to other gardeners.

“I loved talking about gardening with like-minded people,” he said. “Everyone had a good time.”

Tickets for the Garden and Art Tour, which is sponsored by Royal LePage Campbell River, are available at the Campbell River Art Gallery, the Willows Market, the Visitor Information Centre and the Comox Valley Art Gallery. Tickets are $15 and proceeds support children’s programs at the Campbell River Art Gallery. Call 250-287-2261 for more information.

The Campbell River Community Centre is offering a bus tour, for $20 including your ticket, on Saturday, July 7 only. Call 250-286-1161 for details.