RIP CBC’s Bob Switzer, longtime Western Gardener/Canadian Gardener host


  Bob SWITZER.. Obit as appeared in Vancouver Sun/Province Aug. 26th

August 26, 1928 – July 14, 2015 Bob Switzer, CBC’s beloved “Canadian Gardener” died on Gambier Island amidst the tenderness of family, his  flowers and hummingbirds. He had planned many more adventures with Joley, his wife of 32 years. His steadfastness, lively conversation and optimism are gone too soon and profoundly missed.  He was aged 86.

He was the only child of Henry St. John Switzer and Nellie Rosamond (nee Palmer) and was baptized Robert Edwin Mason Switzer at Christ Church in Vancouver.

The celebration of his well-lived complex life will be June 2016.

If you wish, please make a donation to the Kidney Foundation of Canada or the Heart and Stroke Foundation. – See more at:

Courtesy of ‘Vancouver Broadcasters’ and Gord Lansdell, here is Bob’s broadcasting itinerary:

CJAV Port Alberni 1950s; co-host with PD Dick Batey Calling the Island CJVI Victoria late 1950s; host Temple for Teens CBC Radio Vancouver 1960s; co-host with chef John Lindenlaub CBC-TV cooking show Cuisine circa 1964-1966; co-host World Aquarium CBC Vancouver 1975; host Switzer Unlimited CBC-TV National from Vancouver 1976; Bob Switzer Show CBC Vancouver circa 1978; co-host with David Tarrant Education Co-ordinator UBC Botanical Gardens Western Gardener 1982-86 CBC-TV British Columbia and Canadian Gardener 1986-1993 CBC-TV National; retired from CBC 1993; judge All Point Bulletin newspaper Point Roberts WA/Delta BC Flowers by the Sea Contest 1992-2002


  1. Truly a gifted, talented, sweet and loving man – Mr. Switzer was the epitome of grace, and wit. I was a HUGE fan and always hoped I would meet him.

    I came close meeting him – but you know how radio and TV are – we move and we are making new connections and losing them too.

    My condolences to his Wife and Family and to his legion of fans.

    A life well lived, sir!

  2. I have “Uncle Bob and Shandygaff ” (St Bernard sidekick) ringing a bell in my way-back memory. Children’s show or spot on a tv show? I can see him sitting in an armchair reading a story out loud to the viewing audience, with Shandy flaked out beside him.

    Somewhere around /78 my mother was on a broadcast of his show discussing collectables. She either phoned or wrote and asked if he would be interested in having her on the show and the answer was sure!!

    For me as a boomer, decade after decade Bob Switzer was simply always, reliably “there” on the tv.

    Thank you Mr Switzer for all the entertainment, and for hosting my mother.

  3. that was Bob McGavin of the Uncle Bob Show filmed in Vancouver BC in the 60s actually, with Shandygaff the St Bernard. I was on his show when i was little as i stood directly in front of the camera to watch it come towards the stage. Then i saw myself doing that when I got home.


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