On Saturday, July 31st we were in Uplands Park in Oak Bay! This park is home to 20 rare and endangered species and is one of the best examples of a Garry Oak ecosystem, one of the most endangered ecosystem types in Canada. There was much enthusiasm from our community members in being able to help ongoing restoration efforts in the park to protect native biodiversity. We removed three different invasive species including English ivy, daphne laurel, and crow garlic. We had a lovely group of people out who were local to Oak Bay and also came from other municipalities. Many of our long-time community members were there along with many new faces!
Thank you to our community members for giving time on their Saturday to help restore the park: Richard, Chloe, Tyler, Arianna, Catherine, Michael, Audrey, Mia, Riho, Tristan, Jennifer, Ronan, Tyler, Will, Karen, Sara, Matthew, Chad, Cristina, Casey, Liz, Clarisse, Denise, Felicity, and Lauren.
A big thank you goes out to the District of Oak Bay for supporting our community engagement work, and to Chris Hyde-Lay for being our main contact and helping to set up this event! We would also like to thank The Friends of Uplands Park, Wylie Thomas and Margaret Lidkea, for collaborating with us at this event! It was fantastic to have them there with us and we appreciate that they gave wonderful demonstrations for the volunteers on how to remove the invasive plants.
We would also like to thank our generous in-kind sponsors for providing eco-gifts to our community members! We love introducing our community members to environmentally and socially conscious businesses – especially local! Everyone was very excited to take home one of our many eco-gift choices. We had fair-trade chocolate from Camino, natural toothpaste tablets from Nelson Naturals, reusable straws from West Coast Refill, and fruit, vegetable, and wildflower seeds from Metchosin Farms and Saanich Native Plants!
And thank you to Saanich News for writing about this event in the paper and spreading the word about what we do! We really appreciate it!
A photo album from the day can be found HERE!
- 24 community members contributed 77 volunteer hours
- 12 community members had never been to the park before
- 11 community members removed invasive plants for the first time
- 4 cubic metres of invasive plants removed
- Community members reported feeling welcomed, appreciated, and having a sense of accomplishment!
What Community Members Said
“Thank you!!! Such a great day :-)” – Casey
Impact of the program is: “Making a position impact, one plant at a time, in the rich ecosystems of Victoria” – Audrey
Impact of the program is: “Bringing people together with a common purpose to help the environment while just enjoying the sense of community that this brings. Thank you!” – Sara
“Great people, we accomplished so much together!” – Liz
Impact of the program is: “To bring people closer to nature in a world and to see how programs like this can make an impact.” – Matthew
Before and After
We removed invasive English ivy and daphne from inside this snowberry patch. Here are a few areas we worked on.
The pile of invasive plants we removed! The garbage bags are full of crow garlic to ensure the seeds don’t spread and proliferate.