Green Teams Canada logo of colourful tree and name of organization

The Greater Victoria Green Team hosted a TD Tree Days event! We spent the day engaging 48 community members at Saxe Point Park in Esquimalt to remove invasive species and plant native trees and shrubs!

In order to grow and thrive, tree seedlings need water, nutrients, and light. Invasive species like English Ivy can crowd out and cover other species, blocking out their light and preventing them from growing. Furthermore, the established root networks of invasive plants are more efficient at absorbing water and nutrients from the soil. For these reasons, it’s really important to pair tree planting with a bit of invasive species removal first to clear out a patch of ground where the trees and shrubs can grow without having to compete against invasive species. Today we planted Douglas Fir, Grand Fir, Western Yew, Red Alder, Scouler’s Willow, Salal, Dull Oregon Grape, and Sword Fern!

Over many decades, this new generation of trees will grow and create healthy habitat for other organisms living in the park. In a couple hundred years, as the older trees die, the trees we planted today will take over as the primary trees in the forest! The shrubs we planted will create a healthy understory that is more resilient against being invaded by ivy.


Thank-you to everyone for participating: Katherine, Joanne, Abishek, Wilson, Maggie, Curtis, Becca, Rachit, Jason, Andrew, Madhu, Juanita, Jack, Osiris, Taryn, Ben, Artem, Yijing, Rhianedd, Yongqi, Valerie, Jeremy, Avery, Maximus, Jess, Shri, Andrew, Annie, Peter, Kris, Deepak, Gordon, Nancy, Wendy, Kiana, Peyton, Tillie, Olga, Stephen, Avi, Chloe, Tristan, Sahar, Mieka, Rosanna, Blake, Alonso and Ramisa!

Thank-you very much to the Township of Esquimalt for partnering with us and contributing to our Green Team activities, and for recognizing the importance of collaboration in community engagement and ecological restoration!

Thank You to the TD Tree Days representatives Andrew and Jeremy who helped facilitate today!

Group Photo!


  • In total 48 community members participated and contributed to 165 volunteer hours!
  • 24 volunteers were introduced to Saxe Point Park, while 20 volunteers had never planted trees before!
  • We planted 177 trees & shrubs today, and also removed 13 cubic metres of invasive plants!
  • We welcomed our new Program Coordinator, Kaitlin, to the GVGT team!

Before and After Photos

This activity not only benefitted the environment, but also the participants themselves. By being out in nature doing something positive as a team, our community members:

  • Develop a sense of belonging to community and place
  • Have improved mental and physical health
  • Connect to nature, which leads to environmentally responsible behaviour
  • Learn about local environmental issues and actions they can take
  • Learn the value of bringing together people to work towards a common goal
  • Become leaders in their communities
  • Increase confidence, resilience and perseverance

Volunteer Testimonials

“I feel the impact of this program is a very important part of a stable community. Getting people together to work as a team to clean up invasive plant in our parks has a big impact on ones mental health with a sense of accomplishment and socialization. By removing invasive species we can help control the health and growth of our native green spaces that we should all cherish.” – Becca

“I enjoyed spending time with colleagues out of the office, and helping to clean up our shared spaces.” – Nancy

Planting trees is an All-Ages activity!

Action Shots

Thank you to Lush, OLA Bamboo, Earth Rated & Green Beaver for donating in-kind gifts for our hard-working volunteers to take home!


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