Busy bees & busy bodies!

Our first installment of Wild Weekends took place over the weekend at the lovely White Point Resort. It was a beautiful day and terrific weather for a nice hike! Izzy Clarke, a student at the Resource and Environmental Technology program at NSCC, led us on a flora identification walk to help us familiarize with the beautiful native species that grow on the South Shore! We covered various ecosystems; from rugged terrain, estuaries, and coastal plants, to more developed areas (such as roadways). Thank you to all that came out and joined us!

Tomorrow (July 13th) we will be our first Wild Weekends Workshop, hosted by Geena Morse of Grim Photography! Geena will be showing us the basics of outdoor portrait photography! The workshop will start with a “how-to” on using DSLR camera (or equivalent) functions. Topics will include shutter speed aperture/F-stop, and ISO. Afterward we will be taking a stroll along our trails at the HLC to test out our new skills! We will be passing through forested areas, along the beach, and through meadow and marsh areas. All levels of experience are welcome, and you can even bring your cellphone along!


Next week’s Wild Weekend (Sunday, July 21st), we will be taking a medicinal herb walk with Erica Fraser, a lifelong student of herbal medicine currently studying to become a registered herbal practitioner at the Bloom Institute for Herbal Studies in Halifax. She will guide a gentle hike around the HLC and teach participants about native flora and their medicinal uses. Come along and learn what useful plants you may have growing in your backyard! Join us from 11am-2pm. You can register for all Wild Weekends events at info@harrisonlewiscentre.org. Workshops are Pay-What-You-Can!


But those events are only the beginning of the plant-focused work going on this season at the HLC! Late this week we had Celeste Kieran, summer research intern at the Mersey Tobeatic Research Institute (MTRI) graciously return to plant the second of two gardens on HLC land! Her work at MTRI is mostly with the Butterfly Project, planting educational pollinator gardens to support healthy populations of pollinators around Nova Scotia.  This is a project that has been generously supported by TD Friends of the Environment, Environment Canada, Monarch Nation, and the Lunenburg Garden Club. The two gardens at the HLC include plants that attract pollinators such as Milkweed, and native Nova Scotian species such as Hairy beardtongue and large-leaved aster. These gardens are both educational and functional (our monarch sightings have been increasing since the gardens were planted) and as a bonus they will grow into beautiful and bushy eye-catchers on the Centre’s property. Celeste will be leading a pollinator garden Wild Weekends Workshop on Saturday, August 10th. This workshop will include an educational discussion on pollinator gardens, complimented by some hands-on activities such as creating seed bombs that participants can bring home!

Celeste watering our new garden bed!

Celeste watering our new garden bed!

We have ALSO planted a late blooming food garden, that will be growing onions, turnips, radishes and other hearty veggies that we will be harvesting in the fall. Rob MacNeish from the Dartmouth North Community Food Centre’s community garden came by and developed a four-year plan for our garden space to make a high-efficiency, highly productive garden using a raised bed technique. We already have most of our seeds in the ground and are excited to see what we reap in the fall! A huge shout out to Rob for his incredible guidance!

And lastly for your enjoyment, here is a neat picture of a fabulous moth that was hanging out with us all morning!


Written by: Mackenzie Blanchard

Edited by: Shauna Doll