The following sites, developed for various reasons, all provide valuable wild pollinator habitat. Visit them to see how people are supporting pollinators throughout the Outaouais-Ontario East region.
To include your community, school, or other public pollinator garden on our map, please send us its title, location, and a brief description – firstname.lastname@example.org
Behind Abbotsford Seniors' Centre, 950 Bank Street Show on Map
Volunteer Carol MacLeod takes care of pollinator beds on the Monk Street side of this seniors’ centre in the Glebe.
Allbirch Pollinator Garden
Allbirch Road, Constance Bay Show on Map
Hank and Vera Jones have tuned the front garden of their half-acre lot into a pollinator garden. In addition to perennials, it contains many fruit and nut trees. Their backyard is CWF-certified wildlife habitat. They also grow vegetables and salad greens in portable tables and enjoy foraging produce from the trees.
Hank recalls: “Launched in 2008, the APG started by “rewilding” the site – letting what was already there show its face; over a hundred plants did so. Ottawa By-Law did not approve. We spent the first year arguing that the city was already asking for such places, but their rules contradicted. We were finally vindicated. However, this contradiction has emerged repeatedly for others in the region seeking the same emancipation – victoriously in every case as I can recall.
“Advice: allow meadow patches to emerge and expand simply by progressively mowing less and less area until only pathways remain. This way, you will not attract the lightning, I expect.”
Beaux Arbres Native Plants
29 Ragged Chute Road, Bristol, Quebec (4.5 km north of Highway 148) Show on Map
The native plant demonstration gardens at Beaux Arbres are alive with a wide variety of flowers and pollinators throughout the season. See over ten different types of plantings in diverse sites, including a woodland garden, rock garden, willow grove, dye garden, prairie meadow, and more.
Brenda’s pollinator garden
Scott Street, Ottawa Show on Map
As Brenda MacKenzie describes it, “My crazy garden is an ordinary urban lot. I have Joe-Pye Weed, three kinds of milkweed, wild irises, native Cardinal Flower, echinacea, Beebalm, and old-fashioned tall zinnias, all of which attract bees and butterflies. The bees in the yard are pretty clearly some variety of carpenter bee. There are other species too, but there are hundreds of carpenter bees. Our neighbour had to cut down a large dying maple and had a lot of the wood stacked in his yard. This may be providing the habitat for the wild bees.
“We have included more native plants in recent years, installed a disappearing stream, have been using no pesticides, and have composted avidly for 30 years. The results were not instant, but we have all manner of visitors — bees, songbirds, dragonflies, and butterflies, including red and white admirals, black swallowtails, and monarchs. All of these come and go depending on what is blooming.”
East side of Bronson Avenue between the canal and the Rideau River Show on Map
Residents of Old Ottawa South are turning a strip of mowed grass into an urban meadow and forest filled with a diversity of trees, shrubs, grasses, and flowers that support pollinators and other beneficial insects.
See blog post: Bridge-to-bridge community reforestation project
Canadian Wildlife Federation
350 Michael Cowpland Drive, Kanata Show on Map
The CWF includes a pollinator bed among its many demonstration gardens, complete with a plant list. An interactive map on its web site allows you to click on each plant for photos and more information.
Canadian Wildlife Federation Monarch recovery project 1
Christie Lake Road, Lanark County Show on Map
The Canadian Wildlife Federation (CWF), in partnership with the National Capital Commission, Hydro One, and Lanark County, is testing whether the creation of native meadows along roadsides and rights‐of‐way can successfully control Wild Parsnip, while restoring Monarch butterfly habitat and reducing management costs.
Right‐of‐way corridors that are restored for Monarch butterflies will be used as a nursery for caterpillars, fuel for the long journey of the adults, and rest stops along the way. They will also be beautiful sites to behold for Monarch lovers across the province.
Canadian Wildlife Federation Monarch recovery project 2
Fallbrook Road, Lanark County Show on Map
Second CWF test site
Canadian Wildlife Federation Monarch recovery project 3
Riverside Drive Show on Map
Third CWF test site
Canadian Wildlife Federation Monarch recovery project 4
Greens Creek Show on Map
Fourth CWF test site
Churchill Alternative School
Churchill Alternative School Show on Map
Started in 2019.
Contact: Berit Erickson
City Hall pollinator garden
111 Lisgar Street, Ottawa Show on Map
This small raised garden on the Lisgar Street side of City Hall was created in 2019 just in time for Pollinator Appreciation Day on June 7.
The following plants were ordered from Ferguson Forest Tree Nursery: Butterfly Weed (12), Blazing Star (14), and Lance-leaved Coreopsis (16). The Fletcher Wildlife Garden contributed New England Aster, Pearly Everlasting, Wild Bergamot, Blue Vervain, Prairie Smoke, Rough Goldenrod, and Common Milkweed. A rose was already growing in the bed along with various grasses. A barrel in the centre contains horticultural varieties, such as petunias, geraniums, and salvia.
A small insect hotel was mounted on the wall at the back of the garden. By 19 July 2019, it was clearly being used.
Corner Pollinator Garden
Fraser at Sherbourne Show on Map
Last spring, Berit Erickson turned a front yard, on a busy urban corner, into a pollinator garden. Because so many people stop by while she is working in the garden, she created a brochure full of great tips and information about what she is doing. Berit kindly shared a copy with us.
Web site: cornerpollinatorgarden.net
Brochure: Create your own pollinator garden
Faith communities (Faith and the Common Good partners)
Faith & the Common Good (FCG) is a national environmental NGO that works with faith and spiritual communities in their efforts to become more “ecological.” The local Ottawa FCG chapter has been promoting sustainable and ecological gardening for the past few years and was thrilled to partner up with Wild Pollinator Partners to support pollinators and add more native plants to the following gardens.
FCG – All Saints Anglican Church
Richmond Road, Westboro, Ottawa Show on Map
All Saints Anglican Church in Westboro designed a shady courtyard garden that has become a community amenity along Richmond Road where many people enjoy sitting on the benches and relaxing by the garden beds. Here, Pearly Everlastings have been added along with Spotted Beebalm and other native flowers.
FCG – Canadian Martyrs Catholic Church
Main Street, Ottawa East Show on Map
Official pollinator garden on site.
FCG – Holy Cross Catholic Church
Walkley Road, Ottawa Show on Map
FCG – Kitchissippi United Church
Island Park Drive, Ottawa Show on Map
FCG – Knox Presbyterian Church
Elgin at Lisgar Show on Map
Added to our downtown pollinator survey in 2019. A courtyard off Elgin Street is a green oasis where shrubs, perennials, and Winston the Groundhog live.
FCG – Orleans United Church
Orléans Boulevard, Orleans, Ottawa Show on Map
Orleans United Church, on Orleans Blvd close to Bilberry Creek, is situated on an extensive lot with a tree-lined entrance and various garden beds on all sides of the church. Their new biodiversity prayer garden will include Grey-headed Coneflowers, asters, Yarrow, and Golden Alexander, and they have also added some native shade plants to their current beds.
FCG – Sheng Shen Catholic Church
Michael Street, Ottawa Show on Map
Sheng Shen Catholic Church, on Michael Street near St. Laurent mall, wanted to add some pollinator plants to support their community garden and prayer space. Their additions include Wild Bergamot, Yarrow, and Grass-leaved Goldenrod.
FCG – St. Barnabas Anglican/Catholic Church
James Street, Centretown, Ottawa Show on Map
St. Barnabas Church on James Street is a downtown property with some beautiful ornamental garden beds along the sidewalk. It provides lovely colour along a busy city street, and they have now added asters, Black-eyed Susans, Cup-plants, and other natives.
FCG – St. Basil’s Catholic Church
Rex Avenue, Ottawa Show on Map
St. Basil’s parishioners have turned a median in their parking lot into a flower oasis – although not all native plants – and are revitalizing a second spot by the church entrance.
FCG – St. Columba Anglican Church
Sandridge Road, Ottawa Show on Map
St. Columba Anglican Church, on Sandridge Road in Manor Park, is close to the Aviation Parkway and has a large property shaded in the front by maple trees. Heart-leaved Asters and native Columbines have been placed in the shady garden beds.
Volunteers are working toward creating a pollinator meadow.
FCG – St. Luke’s Anglican Church
Somerset Street West, Ottawa Show on Map
FCG – St. Martin’s Anglican Church
Prince Charles Road, Ottawa Show on Map
FCG – St. Matthew’s Anglican Church
First Avenue, Ottawa Show on Map
First Avenue Public School
First Avenue Public School Show on Map
Started in 2019 in planters, but also an “empty” space between the playground and street.
Contact: Catherine Hall (teacher)
Fletcher Wildlife Garden
Prince of Wales Drive just south of the Dominion Arboretum Show on Map
- Pollinator garden in a box (at northeast corner of the Old Field habitat)
- Butterfly Meadow
- Backyard Garden (photo below)
Flutter and Buzz Pollinator Patch
Stonecrest Park, Barrhaven Show on Map
Flutter and Buzz Pollinator Patch is in a city park next to a playground and Adrienne Clarkson Elementary School. It was started and is maintained by residents in the surrounding neighbourhood, especially Clare and her husband. It provides a learning site for the adjacent school to promote understanding, conservation and appreciation of nature.
In 2019, the garden was doing so well, Clare had Swamp Milkweeds to give away. She traded with the Fletcher Wildlife Garden for some earlier-blooming wildflowers – Prairie Smoke and Tall Cinquefoil – to put in the new bed in the centre of the circular garden.
Contact person: Clare
Frederick Banting Alternative High School
Main Street, Stittsville Show on Map
Started in 2019.
Contact: Janet Perry (teacher)
Friends of Lanark County roadside wildflowers
County Road 12 (Macdonald's Corners Road) between Lanark and Elphin Show on Map
Friends of Lanark County are using the province’s Adopt-a-Road program to prevent roadside spraying of herbicides to control Wild Parsnip. Concerned over the health of native insects and anxious to preserve wildflowers along local roads, this group of “mostly seniors” is manually removing Wild Parsnip and planting native species both purchased and donated.
They are very disturbed by the increase in roadside spraying to deal with invasives and want to reach out and educate others about taking a more cautious and reasoned approach.
For more about this issue, please see
Friends of Petrie Island wildflower garden
Turtle Trail, Petrie Island Show on Map
Throughout the seasons, flowering flora (plants and shrubs) are marked with informational signage that provides details on the species and its ecological, medicinal and edible properties. In May 2018, Petrie Island became a registered Monarch waystation.
Glebe school garden
Glebe Collegiate Institute, Glebe Avenue, Ottawa Show on Map
This garden was created through a partnership between the Glebe Community Association Parks Committee, Glebe Collegiate’s environmental club, and the Ontario Nature Youth Council. It contains a variety of native perennials and a bee bath.
See news story about the project: Glebe’s abuzz (Glebe Report, August 16, 2018)
Just Food Farm
2391 Pepin Court, in the Greenbelt near Blackburn Hamlet Show on Map
“Started in 2012, the Just Food Farm is where people and projects come together to model and inspire small-scale, viable agriculture businesses and initiatives in the Ottawa region.” Weedy fields and edges provide habitat for native pollinators and the farm created a pollinator hotel at a recent workshop.
Landscapes of Canada Gardens
Just west of the Canadian Museum of Nature Show on Map
This outdoor space at the CMN features native trees, shrubs, and wildflowers found in Canada’s boreal forest, Arctic tundra, and prairie grasslands. Although not created for pollinators, the prairie garden, in particular, attracts a number of bees, butterflies, flies, and other insects.
East side of the Horticulture Building, Lansdowne Park Show on Map
Pollinators are attracted to the exhibit of local floral plants in the civic gardens next to the Horticulture Building.
Library street garden
Ottawa Public Lirary, Sunnyside Branch, 1049 Banks Street Show on Map
In 2018, the Dreamers planted a number of native wildflowers including Pearly Everlasting (front of photo), New England Asters, Joe-Pye Weed, bergamot, and others, in the large garden bed between the sidewalk and parking lot next to Sunnyside branch of the Ottawa Public Library.
Lisgar school garden
Lisgar Collegiate Institute, Lisgar Street, Ottawa Show on Map
This garden includes both vegetable and pollinator beds, with a variety of species that are both native to Ontario and pollinator-friendly. It is maintained by student and staff volunteers.
Initially planned to produce local organic food for the school’s culinary program, the students soon realized they had to increase habitat for pollinators. Education is a big component of this project. Participants are learning as it evolves and reaching out to art, photography, biology, and health programs. The Lisgar Environmental Action Force (LEAF) is working toward making Lisgar a “bee school.”
Macoun Marsh Study Area
Southeast corner of Beechwood Cemetery, off St Laurent Blvd Show on Map
Located at the corner of Beechwood Cemetery, this natural area is maintained by volunteers, including many school children, under the leadership of science teacher Michael Léveillé. Many species of wild pollinators have been observed there.
Maplelawn Historic Garden
529 Richmond Road, Ottawa Show on Map
Hydro corridor on both sides of Brady Avenue Show on Map
Initiated by the Ottawa Stewardship Council (OSC), the Briarbrook and Morgan’s Grant Community Associations, Hydro One, and the City of Ottawa via former councillor Marianne Wilkinson are working to make this part of a hydro corridor into a haven for pollinators. According to an OSC representative, this is a win-win-win situation:
- The community gets a beautiful green space that is an asset to the neighbourhood, invites people to walk its paths, and provides an opportunity for learning about the environment and connecting with nature.
- Hydro One gets a corridor that won’t require costly maintenance to keep the land clear beneath the power lines.
- In place of a corridor filled with invasive species, Nature gets a meadow of native plants for pollinators that supports bees, butterflies, other insects, birds, and humans.
A great model for other communities!
For more about this project
- Morgan’s Grant greenspace revitalization on the OSC web site
- Morgan’s Grant hydro corridor on the BMGCA web site
- Summer report for 2020
MTN – École Marius Barbeau
École Marius-Barbeau, Notting Hill Avenue, Ottawa Show on Map
As part of a Monarch Teachers’ Network (MTN) project to establish Monarch Waystations at schools across the city, this garden was started in 2012-13. It’s very small garden, under 200 square feet, but contains water features, a central path, small raised beds in the larger area, many, many colourful flowers, and lots of love.
In January 2019, we were pleased to hear from Katherine Hayashi, a teacher at this school: “I am very proud to say that my school garden at Marius-Barbeau is going strong. I found caterpillars for the first time last summer.”
Photo journal: École Marius-Barbeau
MTN – Hilson Outdoor Classroom
Hilson Avenue Public School, Hilson Avenue, Ottawa Show on Map
Although this garden started modestly, at less than 200 square feet, it has grown as students and teachers use and appreciate it. In 2018, a teacher who was just learning about gardening and native plants contacted the Fletcher Wildlife Garden, which followed up with a site visit, advice, and the addition of more plants.
The garden is arranged in raised boxes that contain a number of Common Milkweed plants. In 2018, students added Butterfly Weed, Wild Bergamot, Beebalm, Columbine, Lance-leaved Coreopsis, and False Sunflower.
MTN – Mariposa Haven, Pakenham
Pakenham Public School, Pakenham, Ontario Show on Map
The garden is a raised bed of about 300 square feet, next to the Pakenham Public School, where it has good drainage and gets a lot of light.
According to the management plan document, “The school has always had a very active gardening community. We are located in the country surrounded by farming families, and students that are very involved and interested in gardening. We currently have 2 gardens at the front of the school, a large garden on the side of the school, and some smaller gardens in the back where the students can rest and enjoy the plants and flowers. Our goal with this funding would be to enhance one of the gardens at the front of the school to its former glory, and use plants that would attract monarchs.”
Photo journal: Pakenham Public School butterfly garden
MTN – Neighbours and Nature Ensemble
Terry Fox Park, Orleans Show on Map
Because it’s in a city park, many people were involved and “it was complicated.” The garden is planted in a circle, about 38 feet in diameter for a total of about 300 square feet. Residents, local schools, city staff, and of course teachers from the MTN were all involved in planning, planting, and maintenance. Local schools have been inspired by this garden to create their own garden or waystation.
Photo journal: Neighbours and Nature Ensemble: a community garden project
MTN – Trillium’s Butterfly Hotel
Trillium Elementary School, Varennes Blvd, Orleans Show on Map
As part of a Monarch Teachers’ Network (MTN) project to establish Monarch Waystations at schools across the city, this garden was started in 2012-13. It’s small – about 300 square feet in raised boxes – but was planted with 3 milkweed species plus annual nectar flowers like zinnia, and native perennials like Beebalm and Joe-Pye Weed.
Children in the child care and kindergarten groups helped build and decorate the boxes, plant, and water.
“Our goal for the garden is to not only create a butterfly waystation but to beautify our yard, get our parents and school involved, and have lots of fun doing it.”
The children made a photo journal to remember the beginnings of this garden: The making of Trillium’s Butterfly Hotel: a photo journal
Rideau Environmental Action League (REAL)
William Street, Smith's Falls, Ontario Show on Map
- Critical habitat for the at-risk monarch butterflies: milkweed host plants for breeding stage, other colourful native nectar plants for feeding
- Habitat for other pollinators: other butterfly species, birds, bees, and insects.
- Visually attraction to human residents and tourists
- Demonstration of what others can do on their own properties to enhance the local monarch population
- An ongoing support to monarch populations in coming years
- Legacy project for REAL’s 30th anniversary
Website: Monarch Garden
July 2019 update: Monarch Garden Looking Good
Contact: Barb Hicks
Selby Plains/Atlantis Pollinator Garden
Selby Avenue at Atlantis, Sir John A. MacDonald Parkway Show on Map
Dave Adams, who takes care of the winter trail along the Sir John A. MacDonald Parkway, started a pollinator garden this summer (2020). Removing invasive buckthorn trees was difficult, but the hardy native species and other wildflowers he is planting are flourishing.
This project is sponsored by the Westboro Beach Community Association in consultation with the National Capital Commission.
Trinity Youth Wildlife Garden
Richardson Side Road, Carp, Ontario Show on Map
Established in 2015, the Trinity Presbyterian pollinator garden in Kanata is home to native plants that provide nectar and pollen to beneficial insects and birds. The church’s youth group was inspired to start the garden and led the design and implementation with the support of the congregation. The youth group and the congregation maintain this pollinator garden.