Mystic Vale at University of Victoria, Saanich, February 27, 2022

The Greater Victoria Green Team engaged 27 community members at Mystic Vale on the University of Victoria campus. We primarily removed English Ivy, with some Holly and Daphne removed as well. The invasive species have been crowding and shading out the native understory and threatens the trees growing in this beautiful forest! English Ivy can grow up to 9 feet in a year, and can grow up to 40 ft vertically on a tree or building! The plant spreads by propagation, so if a stem fragment finds soil, a new section of ivy can grow. Seeds are also spread by seeds by birds! By removing the invasive plants, we are helping the native vegetation regenerate. Some of the native species we saw in the area were Oregon Grape, Trailing Blackberry and Indian Plum!


Thank-you to everyone for participating: Monique, Richard, Julian, Zahra, Ramisa, Andrew, Stuart, Chloe, Sara, Miki, Pip, Airu, Ben, Philip, Larry, AJ, Hong, Houtian, Rhian, Tristan, Nisa, Audrey, Lauren, Daniel, Mark, Lauren and Roy!

Thank-you very much to the Office of Campus Planning and Sustainability, University of Victoria for partnering with us and contributing to our Green Team activities and for recognizing the importance of collaboration in community engagement and ecological restoration!

Group Photo!

Check out ALL PHOTOS from the day HERE


  • In total 27 volunteers participated and contributed to 82 volunteer hours!
  • 19 volunteers were introduced to Mystic Vale, while 14 volunteers had never removed invasive species before!
  • We removed 11 cubic metres of invasive plants!
  • So many people walking by thanked us for removing the English Ivy and said that our work is so meaningful to them and the community!
  • Pip found blue green stain mycelium that was beautiful!
  • Previous GVGT events at this park:

Before and After

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

“It was wonderful to see a large and diverse group of volunteers dedicating their time to help conserve a local habitat/ecosystem. Encouraging to see some selflessness in a time of pretty horrific selfishness.” – Stuart

“I feel that it was a good occasion to rethink about the environment for me.” – Miki

“Just a special thanks to Amanda. I just enjoy her energy for the program and how she makes sure everyone is included.” – Ben

“Ecological restoration is so important to so many things like indigenous knowledge, reconciliation and sovereignty, mental health, and local economies. I’m very excited to be a part of this and I hope to join clean ups as much as I can!” – AJ

Some Green Wood Cup mycelium that Pip found!

Action Shots

Volunteers Enjoying In-kind Gifts from SwedeThings and Watson gloves!

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