Here is a conversation-starting way to welcome local bees and butterflies: plant a Butterflyway canoe garden!
Torontonian Aidan Dahlin Nolan dreamt up the idea of filling canoes with butterfly-friendly plants when he volunteered with the David Suzuki Foundation. Aidan helped land more than 30 canoe planters across the city, mostly in schoolyards and parks.
“Retired” canoes filled with soil, native wildflowers and shrubs add colour and feed local bees and butterflies. They’re also a playful nod to long-buried lost streams and rivers that run through neighbourhoods.
Six steps to planting a canoe garden
- Find a location
- Get permission and hatch your plan
- Find plants native to your area (take note of our canoe garden plant list!)
- Find a canoe
- Plant your canoe
The Butterflyway Project
The Butterflyway Project is a citizen-led movement growing highways of habitat for bees and butterflies across Canada, one butterfly-friendly planting at a time.
Volunteer Butterflyway Rangers have connected with local schools, city agencies and homeowners to plant thousands of wildflowers in hundreds of pollinator patches, establishing Butterflyways in nine neighbourhoods and cities!