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Project News

Rathtrevor Provincial Park

Saanich Native Plants is helping to restore Coastal Sands habitat at Rathtrevor Provincial Park in partnership with BC Parks and other biologists. A seawall extending the beach was removed in 2016 to restore natural beach dynamics. We are using native plants and seeds to increase the abundance and diversity of native plants to the site.

Lochside Garry Oak Meadow Restoration Project

Saanich Native Plants has partnered with Peninsula Streams Society and Pollinator Partnership Canada to restore a ½ acre Garry oak meadow adjacent to the Lochside Trail in Saanich! This project is supported by the North Quadra Community Association, Don Mann Excavating, and the landowner, BC Hydro. In September 2018, the restoration site, which was dominated by non-native plants, was replaced with more than 2000 native plants planted by volunteers from the local community! In addition to soil conditioning and native plantings, the restoration work included broadcast seeding of additional native plants over the entire ½ acre site, and the creation of vernal pools and cobble mounds to increase plant diversity and bee nesting habitat. Come see the transformation and growth of this beautiful pollinator meadow.

Helliwell Provincial Park, Hornby Island

Since 2015, Saanich Native Plants has been working with BC the Ministry of Environment and BC Parks to help restore rare coastal meadow habitat in Helliwell Provincial Park, Hornby Island.  These open, shallow soil meadows have been degraded through decades of wildfire suppression, which has resulted in the encroachment of Douglas-fir forest into the meadow. The establishment of invasive non-native plant species also threatens this unique ecosystem. These habitat changes have resulted in the loss of native plant species and extirpation of the endangered Taylor’s Checkerspot butterfly. Saanich Native Plants provides expertise and advise that helps guide restoration activities for these coastal meadows. We also supply native plants and seeds to help re-establish native vegetation.

Harvest4knowledge

Led by Farm2SchooBC, School District 61 Aboriginal Native Education Department, Songhees and Esquimalt Nation, and funded through the Horner Foundation, Harvest4Knowledge is an inspiring new project that brings Indigenous plant and traditional food knowledge to youth by building Indigenous plant gardens at selected schools throughout SD61, the traditional territory of the Songhees and Esquimalt First Nations. Many others are helping along the way, like Saanich Native Plants, Habitat Acquisition Trust, and Lifecycles Project Society. These gardens, which will include interpretive signage in both Lekwungen and English, create interactive learning environments that provide students with opportunities to learn about, harvest and eat traditional plant foods and medicines, and connect with elders and knowledge keepers in the community. This fall, Saanich Native Plants helped to design and build Indigenous plant gardens at Spectrum Community School and Shoreline Community Middle School, and there are more to come! See: farmtoschoolbc.ca for more info.

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