A Sustainable Garden…
In 2010, the United Nations General Assembly challenged world to take action to safeguard the variety of life on earth upon which our lives depend. To mark the International Year of Biodiversity, the Oakville Horticultural Society proposed creating a new biodiverse garden in the Anderson Bridge Parkette (corner of Forsythe and Rebecca streets). With proceeds from a wonderful Evening with Freeman Patterson, OHS set out to make it happen.
Building on an inspirational design from Belinda Gallagher, Head of Horticulture at the Royal Botanical Gardens, Sean James of Fern Ridge Landscaping created a planting plan for this model water efficient Garden for Life. With support from many volunteers, the Region of Halton and the Town of Oakville, Fern Ridge Landscaping, David Hawley and Associates, and The Petrie Group, the garden was planted in the spring of 2011. Our goal was to create a beautiful space that meets the needs of the community while supporting the environment.
The original design incorporated more than 40 plant species, most native to Ontario and many indigenous to the region of Halton. The plants were chosen to thrive on this site without the addition of water or fertilizers. It was designed to provide year-round beauty for area residents while supporting pollinators and area wildlife. This is a trial garden that will change over time. We will be monitoring the plants for suitability in public gardens and as boulevard plantings and they may change over the years.
The current plant list is can be found on the Plant List page…
- Air and water cleansing
- Erosion and sediment control
- Food and renewable non-food production
- Habitat and food for wildlife including important pollinators
- Hazard mitigation
- Human health and well-being benefits
- Local and global climate regulation
- Waste decomposition and treatment
- Water supply and regulation
You too can make smart plant choices and create a lush attractive eco-friendly garden.
- Oakville is in plant hardiness Zone 6. This means you need to use plants that can survive a minimum temperature of -23°C. Choose plants labelled hardy to Zone 6 or less.
- Some plants grow best in full sun (6-12 hours a day), others do better in partial shade (3 to 6 hours a day), and there are even plants that will thrive in constant shade (less than 3 hours a day). Check the plant label.
- Get to know your soil. In Oakville our soils range from fast draining sands near the lake to heavy clays to the north. Choose plants for your soil type and moisture conditions.
- Biodiversity is the variety of life around us. It ensures we have clean water to drink, clean air to breathe, pollination, weather buffers, and much more. You can help enrich our urban environment by creating gardens for pollinators and other wildlife.
- Use native species where possible. They are well suited to the local climate and conditions and are most likely to support native wildlife.
- Consider designing a pollinator garden so that there is a continuing sequence of blooming plants from spring to fall. Flowers with bright colours, especially blue, yellow, red, and violet are attractive to pollinators.