Green Teams Canada logo of colourful tree and name of organization

The Greater Victoria Green Team spent the day engaging 15 community members from all over the Greater Victoria region to remove invasive Daphne, Himalayan Blackberry, and English Ivy. Additionally, we planted Mock Orange, Saskatoon Berry, Grand Fir trees, and Douglas Fir Trees throughout Burnside-Watkiss Park!

Invasive species have been crowding and shading out the native understory and threatening the trees growing in this beautiful Garry Oak forest. This unique park has, as we were shown on Saturday, contains many incredible oak trees and is one of few remaining Garry Oak ecosystems in the region. We saw one of the oldest and largest Garry Oaks in View Royal as we explored this park. The View Royal Parks group has been working in this park for many years and have succeeded in removing many invasive species from a large portion of this park. We joined forces to continue this important work and increase the area that is primarily inhabited by native plants. The invasive Daphne, Himalayan Blackberry, and English Ivy replace native species and decrease biodiversity, putting the health of these habitats at risk. By removing the invasive plants and planting more native shrubs and trees, we are helping contribute to the protection of this park and improving its resilience.

Group Photo!

THANK YOU

Thank-you to everyone for participating: Annabelle, Devin, Becca, Laura, Josie, Wanda, Chloe, Elizabeth, Kiersten, Blake, Khoi, Finn, Janet, and Nancy! Thank you as well to Chris from View Royal for helping facilitate!

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

Highlights

  • In total 15 community members participated and contributed to more than 42 volunteer hours!
  • We removed over 6 cubic metres of invasive plants and revitalized about 200 square metres of the park!
  • We removed about 40 pounds of garbage!
  • 11 community members were introduced to this park location for the very first time!
  • 2 people learned about and removed invasive plants for the very first time!
  • This activity was the first time 5 of our attendees had ever planted trees / shrubs!

Before and After Photos

A young Douglas Fir tree planted at the edge of the park
A young Grand Fir tree planted at the back end of the park

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

Restoration In Action!

Thank you to these fantastic local eco-friendly businesses: Fatso, Ola Bamboo, Nature Bee Clean, Tru Earth, LUSH, and Green Beaver that have donated In-kind products for our hard-working community members to take home!

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