The Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) is offering oyster gardening seminars this June across Tidewater Virginia to help waterfront homeowners grow oysters for restoration efforts.
Oyster gardening volunteers raise oysters in cages suspended in the water from their home dock or a marina. Over the course of a year, the growers watch tiny baby oysters grow into adult oysters, which filter the water and provide habitat for aquatic life. It is a low-maintenance and fun family activity.
After a year, CBF places the oysters on a Virginia sanctuary reef near where they were raised. CBF’s oyster gardening seminar teaches oyster growing basics to new gardeners and provides them with a growing setup and baby oysters. On the same day, CBF holds “round-ups” where returning gardeners can swap out their full-grown oysters for new baby oysters.
On the Peninsula, CBF will hold seminars in Newport News on Thursday, June 22, at 6 p.m. at the Mariners’ Museum and in Hampton on Tuesday, June 27, at 6 p.m. at the Hampton Yacht Club. In Southside Hampton Roads, CBF will hold seminars in Virginia Beach on Saturday, June 10, at 9 a.m. at the Brock Environmental Center and in Norfolk on Tuesday, June 20, at 6 p.m. at the Norfolk Yacht & Country Club.
Registration is required, and a $25 suggested donation helps offset the cost of the program. Participants can register online at cbf.org/vaoystergardening or can call 757/809-2939 or e-mail OysterGardener@cbf.org