David Suzuki Foundation volunteers celebrate new corridor for bees and butterflies

TORONTO, June 28, 2017 — Over the past two months, David Suzuki Foundation volunteers have planted a network of seventeen new butterfly-friendly gardens in Toronto’s east end, including schoolyard butterfly gardens and wildflower-filled canoes in parks. The plantings were established as part of the Butterflyway Project, a national effort to reimagine neighbourhoods as highways of habitat for local pollinating critters, from bumblebees to monarch butterflies.

“We’re excited to announce that our team of Butterflyway Rangers has created Canada’s first Butterflyway in the Beaches and Leslieville neighbourhoods,” said Butterflyway Project manager Jode Roberts. “With help from city parks staff, local councillors, businesses, parks groups, teachers, Girl Guides and gardening groups, the east end Rangers have made remarkable progress, creating a Butterflyway through their neighbourhood!”

The David Suzuki Foundation began recruiting residents in Victoria, Richmond, Toronto, Markham and Montreal in March to be part of the program. More than 150 keen volunteers were selected and trained as “Butterflyway Rangers” who are being supported in their collective mission to create patches of butterfly- and bee-friendly habitat in their neighbourhoods. Neighbourhoods where Ranger troops plant a dozen or more pollinator patches will get official David Suzuki Foundation Butterflyway designation, including signs and inclusion in the national Butterflyway Project map.

Ranger-led activities have ranged from creating butterfly-themed costumes and a bike-trailer garden that won second prize in a local parade in Victoria to the planting of a dozen old, retired canoes filled with wildflowers in Markham and Toronto. In Toronto’s west end, a pair of Rangers led the Butterflyway Lane art project, painting butterfly-themed murals on two dozen garage doors, walls and fences in a laneway facing Garrison Creek Park.

The Toronto Butterflyway Rangers were recruited from the Beaches and Leslieville neighbourhoods in the east end and from Cedarvale-Humewood neighbourhood in the west end. The east end locations where pollinator patches have been created to date include:

  • Adam Beck Junior Public School
  • Beach Hill Street Tree Pollinator Patches
  • Beaches Library Pollinator Patch
  • Beaches Recreation Centre Pollinator Patch
  • Bruce PS / Woodgreen ELC Pollinator Patch
  • Enderby Child Care / Woodgreen ELC Patch
  • Girl Guide Pollinator Patch at 1939 Queen
  • Ivan Forrest Gardens Canoe Garden
  • Kew Park Montessori School Pollinator Patch
  • Leslieville Jr PS Pollinator Patch
  • Leuty Beach Boathouse Pollinator Patch
  • Main Street Library Pollinator Patch
  • Morse Street Jr PS Pollinator Patch
  • Norway Jr PS Pollinator Patch
  • Phin Ave Parkette Canoe Garden
  • The Balmy Beach Club Pollinator Patch
  • Williamson Road Jr PS Pollinator Patch

The Butterflyway Project is based on the David Suzuki Foundation’s award-winning Homegrown National Park Project (www.davidsuzuki.org/homegrown) and is generously supported by Nature’s Way and Cascades.

For further information, please contact:
Jode Roberts, David Suzuki Foundation, 647-456-9752, jroberts@davidsuzuki.org @joderoberts