On the first frosty morning in October, Jen De Sousa’s Grade 3-4 class at South Nelson Elementary met with Bren Beckwith from KinSeed Ecologies, a Nelson-based native seed, plant, and consulting business, to learn about native plants in our community.
With beautiful plants donated from KinSeed, the students learned about our native western Canada goldenrod, pearly everlasting, Douglas’ aster, and the delight of wild strawberries.
The students grabbed shovels and trowels and got to work, finding the right spot for these native varieties on the school’s garden slope. The dream is for these native plants to join with the existing native plants like the red-osier dogwood, prickly rose, and Nootka rose, to create important habitat for all the local critters, including the school kids.
“By sharing these plants, getting more of them out there into our urban landscape, we are creating small patches of habitat that can support a wide range of beings,” said Beckwith.
Native plants grow all around us but many of them occur in fewer areas and are much less abundant than in years past. These plants, including the ones planted on the South Nelson slope, are critical for late summer native pollinators as nectar and pollen sources.
“Imagine if we could build biodiversity and connectivity for native bees, butterflies, hummingbirds and other pollinators throughout Nelson,” said Beckwith. “As a community, we can create spaces for native plants, insects, and us to flourish. I’m hoping we planted a seed for the realization of this idea, as well as some lovely plants, in the South Nelson schoolyard.”
All had a wonderful time getting the plants into the ground and look forward to seeing them in their new home next spring.