Green thumbs up in Quyon

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Kate Aley

A new couple is digging deep to grow food for the people of the Pontiac. Welcome Maxime L'Heureux and Sandrine Lariviere (above), proud co-owners of the Chêne Blanc market garden.

Look for this sign!

Lariviere is originally from Quyon. She met L'Heureux while studying horticulture in Montreal. The couple purchased a house on Clarendon Street and awaiting their first child within a few weeks. The farm is a 9000 square foot plot at Domaine Pontiac Village on Cemetery Road in Quyon. Right now, Chê​ne Blanc sells seasonal produce like radishes, lettuce, kale and beets. Longer-season crops such as tomatoes, melons and squash are on their way.

Yum. From left: carrots, kale, lettuce and zucchini.

"It's our first year and we are using organic methods while working towards certification," said Lariviere. "Maxime is interested in forest food and we hope to expand into products like tomato sauce with wild mushrooms."

Sweet baby turnips.

Promoting fresh local produce is a goal for the couple. "We can all grow what we need to be self-sufficient in the summer," said Lariviere. "People need to learn about what grows here and how fresh food can taste. [Customers] comment that our lettuce stays crunchy for a week; that is because it did not travel for days in a truck; it's because it was grown here."

Unusual delicious pickled radishes.

"We are starting small but plan to grow," said Lariviere. Restaurants and caterers wanting fresh, locally grown produce should contact Chê​ne Blanc to arrange a partnership.

Chê​​ne Blanc is at the Bristol Farmers market every Friday from 1 pm to 6 pm until mid-October.