The Root Cellar

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Apothecaries are the original pharmacies that arose in 19th Century Victorian England. Dispensing 'materia medica', they often operated through a retail shop which also sold tobacco & various patent medicines. Designed to be a fundraising extension for projects of ReThink Red Deer, The Root Cellar: ecoStore & Apothecary helps demonstrate the practice of modern-day urban homesteading and the revitalizing of local economies. We have no "brick and mortar" storefront at the moment but use a mobile market-style display to set up at local Farmers' Markets and special events. Our soil building products, heirloom seeds (via Seed Savers Exchange), locally-grown produce, and re-skilling workshops and apprenticeships help rebuild community resiliency, practical skill sets, and the relationships that are vital to a flourishing local economy.


Heirloom Seeds (organic) - $4 to $5 per pack

Rain Barrels (55gal) - $100ea. (overflow hoses (24ft) also available - $20ea.)
(note: The City of Red Deer offers a one-time utility rebate of $50 for a new rain barrel purchase)

Premium Worm Castings - $15 (4lb bag) or $65 (5gal pail - approx. 3 bags free by volume)

Composting Worms - $80/lb ($50 1/2lb) - unavailable at the moment - please purchase from Earthly Matters

Worm Factory - $135 / $185 with 1/2lb worms - unavailable at the moment - please purchase from Earthly Matters

Rock Dust (dolomitic limestone via Nordegg quarry, improves acidic soil) - $5/lb


Workshops and Seminars available upon request (min 6 registrants needed) - cost varies per event.

Topics include:

  • Introduction to Permaculture (focus: urban homesteading)
  • Introduction to Food Forest Gardening
  • Introduction to Rainwater Harvesting
  • Introduction to Urban Henkeeping
  • Introduction to Urban Beekeeping
  • Introduction to Vermicomposting (composting with worms)
  • Introduction to Composting and Soil Building
  • Transition Towns (energy transition planning for communities)

(other topics available - contact us to discuss your needs and related prices)

Ordering Info:

All of our fundraising revenues go towards food security and community sustainability projects led by ReThink Red Deer; from strengthening community garden networks and growing edible food forests to promoting local farmers markets and running skill building workshops.

We've brought together some of the best North American suppliers of organic, free­ trade, ecologically­-minded, and ethically­ sourced products. Our short­ term efforts aim to improve the overall health and wellness of Central Albertans by supporting the economy as close to where we live as possible.

Our current suppliers include:

Seed Savers Exchange (US) and Seeds Of Diversity (Canada):
Seed Savers Exchange (SSE) conserves and promotes America's culturally diverse but endangered garden and food crop heritage for future generations by collecting, growing, and sharing heirloom seeds and plants. SSE takes threats to biodiversity seriously and maintains a collection of more than 20,000 heirloom and open-pollinated vegetable, herb, and plant varieties, including over 1,000 varieties of heritage apple trees. They take great care to ensure the health and viability of their collection for generations of growers to come. Each year, they grow out select varieties in gardens at their Heritage Farm to refresh their seed supply. To maintain accurate records of each variety’s traits, their Evaluation Team grows out other varieties and keeps careful track of them, updating descriptions, and checking for inconsistencies. Their seed historian researches the story of each variety, documenting its history and the lives of the people who brought it to their collection.

Seeds of Diversity (SoD) works to preserve, perpetuate, study and encourage the cultivation of heirloom and endangered varieties of food crops by searching out heirloom and endangered Canadian varieties. They encourage and enable gardeners and farmers to grow, maintain, and disseminate these varieties through an annual seed exchange project and help establish and maintain curatorial collections of Canadian varieties. SoD co-operates with individuals, groups, and institutions in Canada and internationally to maintain, supplement and salvage existing collections of heirloom and endangered varieties and they encourage commercial seed companies, nurseries, and related businesses to grow, maintain and propagate, and commercially distribute these varieties as a means of perpetuating them. 


Earthly Matters Vermiculture (Coaldale, AB):
Earthly Matters is a vermiculture business that produces a variety of soils and a natural soil enhancer, mother nature's best kept secret, earthworm castings. They've been in business since 2008, in Coaldale, Alberta (near Lethbridge) and supply us with worms, worm factories, and premium worm castings in bulk which we bag and bucket up for sale to gardeners and professional growers throughout Central Alberta. We also use them exclusively on our own demonstration projects and gardens.


Mountain Rose Herbs (Eugene, Oregon):
Since 1987, Mountain Rose Herbs has placed a priority on general health and well­being. All of the products processed and offered by Mountain Rose Herbs are handled, analyzed and supervised by a full time quality control department. Every aspect of all products is done in accordance to strict quality control and organic handling procedures. The products are guaranteed fresh, fragrant and colourful, and unlike traditional suppliers of herbal products who keep their merchandise stored in warehouses for several years, Mountain Rose Herbs will never sell or stock products that are more than a few months from harvest (except for seasonal items). This in itself guarantees a fresh, and effective botanical preparation.


Grainworks (Vulcan, Alberta):
Offering over 100 organic choices, Grainworks provides products to make delicious and nutritious organic foods. The company is owned and operated by Dwayne and Doreen Smith who work on 3500 acres of Saskatchewan's best farm land. Their grain crop diversity avoids wearing out the soil the way repeated single­ crop use often does; their soil is protected and replenished, so it stays strong and rich. Using the best organic farming methods produces abundant harvests and high quality grain products for their customers.


Rancho Vignola (Vernon, BC):
Richard and Sue Vignola's involvement in the food industry springs from the days they operated a natural food store in the Okanagan town of Vernon, BC in the late '70s to early '80s. Their services soon expanded to include the new crop harvest of quality dried fruits and nuts from California. After they sold their retail store, they became affiliated with a natural foods wholesaler in Vancouver as representatives for the BC Interior and Alberta. At the same time, their annual new crop sales continued to grow to the level where, in the fall of 1999, they gave up other work commitments to focus all energies on their "nutty" business.


Fungi Perfecti (Eugene, Oregon):
Only recently has the cultivation of exotic mushrooms become a practical endeavor. Cultivating mushrooms is not necessarily difficult: it requires only a willingness to learn, a little work, and adherence to some well defined guidelines. Mushrooms can be grown throughout the year indoors or during a few months outdoors. One of the most exciting innovations in mushroom culture is a concept Fungi Perfecti has been instrumental in promoting: Mycological Landscaping. Mycological landscaping involves the cultivation of exotic mushrooms as beneficial companions to plants in gardens, lawns, or within woodlands. Imagine having a selection of choice exotic mushroom patches, protected in the privacy of your backyard, to be enjoyed through the seasons and perhaps through generations!

Return Policy:

We stand behind all of our suppliers' products and will gladly take back anything that is not up to standard at the time of delivery for a full refund or replacement. Please contact us with any concerns immediately.

For questions / inquiries, please email  rootcellar (at)

Also, visit our Facebook page for more info and resources