Wild columbine, Salt Creek, Rice Lake Plains, ON (Photo by NCC)

Wild columbine, Salt Creek, Rice Lake Plains, ON (Photo by NCC)

Native plant gardening in Ontario

Honeybee on butterflyweed (Photo by NCC)

Honeybee on butterflyweed (Photo by NCC)

Many of the plants in our gardens are not native to Canada. Most of these species were brought here as ornamentals from other parts of the world. Unfortunately, some of these non-native plants are invasive in Canada. They can spread into nearby natural areas, degrading habitats for native plants and animals.

The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) protects our country’s important natural areas. Many NCC properties are cared for by replanting native species and removing invasive plants.

By protecting or creating a mini-nature reserve in our yards, we can have a positive impact on the diversity of plants and wildlife that share our spaces. Check out the video below for an introduction on native plant gardening.

Resources to get you started

Identify species in your garden using iNaturalist

iNaturalist is a citizen science tool and mobile app that is built on the concept of mapping and sharing observations of wildlife and biodiversity across the globe. Observations may be added via mobile phone or on the iNaturalist website. The observations provide valuable data to scientific research projects, conservation agencies, other organizations and the public.

NCC's Ontario iNaturalist project will help collect the public's wildlife observations on NCC lands. Click here to learn more about NCC’s citizen science project through iNaturalist.

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Gifts of Canadian Nature