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© 2017 Kimberley Dowell / LEAF
Our High Park and St. Clair Urban Forest Demonstration Gardens were buzzing with life on July 25th and 27th, as staff and volunteers shared their knowledge with the public about the importance of plants and trees for our native pollinator bees.

The events were part of an educational campaign run by LEAF with the support of Ontario Power Generation, which aims to spread the message that bees love trees! When we think about supporting bees, we often think about planting flowering annuals and perennials. Many of us, however, overlook the fact that trees and shrubs produce substantial amounts of pollen for native bees! Additionally, because trees produce so much pollen, bees do not have to travel as far for food as they might with flowers.

© 2017 Kimberly Dowell / LEAF

LEAF Staff Jillaine Yee at the bee information table at High Park Station


In order to share this message, staff and volunteers set up an information table outside the High Park and St. Clair Demonstration Gardens to provide resources on native bees, bee-friendly trees, and pollinator gardens. LEAF garden stewards also conducted mini garden tours, giving passers-by the chance to ask questions about the native plants in these publicly accessible gardens. And the bees showed up too - the gardens were both abuzz!

© 2017 Kimberly Dowell / LEAF

Volunteer Jayne Armstrong directing High Park Station users to the garden tours


© 2017 Jillaine Yee / LEAF

The bees were all a buzz in the garden. Like this bee on a spotted joe-pye weed (Eupatorium maculatum) at the St. Clair garden!


© 2017 Kimberly Dowell / LEAF

Garden stewards Bernadette Pugh and Helen Godfrey showing off the sweet ox-eye (Heliopsis helianthoides) at St. Clair garden to TTC users.


© 2017 Kimberly Dowell / LEAF

Helen Godfrey, one of our garden stewards, sharing the St. Clair garden with longtime garden admirer Kathy Carter


A big thank you to our volunteers that helped out at these events! And special thanks to Ontario Power Generation and the Toronto Transit Commission for their ongoing support of our gardens.


LEAF is always welcoming new gardeners to our stewardship teams. Sign up to become a LEAF volunteer if you want to help. Or if you’d like to create your own bee-friendly garden at home, LEAF offers native trees, shrubs and bee-friendly garden kits through the Backyard Tree Planting Program.


LEAF’s Urban Forest Demonstration Gardens are supported by Ontario Power Generation’s Biodiversity Program and the Toronto Transit Commission.

Photos were taken by Kim Dowell and Jillaine Yee.

Kim is LEAF’s Volunteer and Stewardship Assistant.


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