Trellis Magazine - Early Spring 2020

Page 1

spring 2020 • Vol 49

Birds of the Ravine | Urban Gardening | Garden Travel

inside s p r i n g 2 0 2 0 • Vo l 4 9



From the EDITOR Thank you Lorraine Flanigan


The Expansion Designing for our needs


WHAT’S HOT! Easy plants to grow from seed

[7] Cover photo of a fledging baby oriole on a dogwood tree and fall sparrow on a lilac bush. This Page: Walter Sliva

TBG LECTURES Highlight Gardens Around the World


URBAN FARMING Self sufficient gardeners teach others how to do it


Kid Crafts at Canada Blooms



BIRDS OF THE RAVINE AND BEYOND Birding hotspots and how to design your garden to attract them


GARDEN TRAVEL Chase the blues away with thoughts of English, Welsh and Irish gardens!


MAke it! Pimm’s Cup



People, Places & Plants


All the Dirt Staff interview Jenny Rhodenizer


TBG KIDs Two new March Break Nature Camps


Restoring the Wild Ecologist Katherine Baird enhances TBG’s focus on the ravine

fro m

t h e e di t o r From Left: Lorraine Hunter and Lorraine Flanigan

Same Name: Different Editor Thank you Lorraine Flanigan for 17 dedicated years at the helm of Trellis “But, is it of benefit to the reader?” That was the question most often asked by retiring Trellis editor Lorraine Flanigan when determining whether a particular subject or article would grace the pages of this magazine. It’s an example I plan to follow as the new editor of Trellis. I would like to thank Lorraine, on behalf of the readers, for the benefit of the 17 years she dedicated to this publication as editor. As chair of the Trellis committee for all of that period, I know the time and effort my friend and colleague put in. Under her tenure, along with art director June Anderson, she saw Trellis grow from a black and white digest-size newsletter to the glossy, full-colour magazine it is today. Trellis has gone through a couple of major redesigns and is also now available online on the magazine website It is the only print publication the TBG currently puts out and as such is the main vehicle for communicating with members. Lorraine won the prestigious Journalist of the Year award presented by the Canadian Garden Council in 2014 for garden tourism following a cross-country train tour of Canadian public gardens. I first met Lorraine Flanigan when I was editor of Plant & Garden magazine and she was one of my freelance contributors. We have worked together on Trellis and not only do we share

the same first name, we have even job shared as commercial editors in our professional lives. And, we were both cross Canada judges for Communities in Bloom in 2015. I hope to continue Lorraine’s good work in Trellis, always putting the “benefit to the reader” above all.

Lorraine Hunter, Trellis Editor

Behind the scenes. It’s the amazing Lorraine Flanigan She’s in the garden, She’s in the wind, She’s in the rain holding it all together to capture the last photo of the day for a Trellis story. –June Anderson


spring 2020

Sneak Peek

The expansion DESIGNING TO MEET OUR NEEDS The service yard will be rebuilt on its original site in the southwest corner off the Bridle Path reports Garden Director Harry Jongerden.

City of Toronto has allocated $4.856 million to TBG’s expansion project. The first dollars spent will go towards the creation of a new service yard.


any years ago, when I was a Metro Toronto Parks gardener, I would come to Edwards Gardens on occasion and work in the nursery. If you’re wondering where that was located, it was in the southwest corner of the park, with access off the Bridle Path. The nursery had its own staff, including a foreman, and its own building. Back then, Edwards Gardens had two service yards! Over the years, the nursery and its facilities were closed, with all operations in Edwards Gardens moving to the current service yard located in the barn and buildings adjacent to it. The very first thing we decided during our expansion master planning process was to move the service yard to its former location off the Bridle Path. The public will be better served by a Barn complex devoted to education, events and food services. We don’t have the details of that worked out yet, but we know that back-of-house activities need to be located back-of-house. City of Toronto has allocated $4.856 million to TBG’s expansion project. The first dollars spent will go towards the creation of a new service yard. Under the City’s project management, TBG staff members are meeting with Edwards Gardens and other City staff, along with design-build architectural consultants, to ensure that the design meets our needs. Aecom has the contract for the project. You’ve probably seen their signs everywhere. They are a very impressive firm

The Barn complex will be devoted to education, events and food services when the service yard moves.

with deep resources to produce our desired results. Aecom’s project lead told us at the first meeting, “If you need us to design a chicken that produces steaks, we can do that.” We all had a laugh, but we understood that this was a firm we could rely on. There is a delicate transition at play that informs the design of the new service yard complex. A service yard is being built that TBG and its staff will occupy someday. With the full build-out of the master plan some six or seven years away, City staff will occupy the new service yard in the meantime. At some point in the transition from City to TBG management of the expanded botanical garden, City staff move out and we will move in.


spring 2020

The joint committee that meets to advise Aecom ensures that the design will meet City needs in the interim, and TBG needs for the future. We have worked towards finding common ground on all issues. It’s great for our Director of Horticulture and for André Hinds, Maintenance Manager, and me to find that our requests, and the needs of City staff, are aligning to result in the appropriate amount of space devoted to office needs, staff parking, lunchroom, change room, staff training, curatorial activities, storage, garage and greenhouse production. Did I say greenhouse? You bet! This will be a very big step forward in our evolution as a botanical garden. Look for completion of the new service yard in 2021.

1. Showy Milkweed

Native to western Canada, this species of milkweed supports Monarch caterpillars that feed on it after hatching, so it is highly prized by egg-laying adults. The flowers are notoriously generous with nectar, so they attract a host of other butterfly species, as well as bees, hummingbirds and many other pollinators.

what’s hot! • Easy Plants to Grow From Seed • Three packets from new Canadian supplier West Coast Seeds to start your garden, all available at the Garden Shop, include:

2. Spicy Slice

3. Wasabi Arugula

An amazing jalapeño pepper, that is also fantastic for stuffing and grilling on the BBQ. These will eventually mature to a sweeter red colour, but at the green stage they are pungent and hot — substantially hotter than Jalapeño M, but with the distinct flavour of jalapeño chilies.

This arugula is exceptional. It has a nice mix of both arugula and wasabi! This variety is a wild arugula type, meaning if left to continue to grow, in milder climates, it will continue to come back year after year.

• Two Events in One • Join us at TBG’s annual Horticultural Open House with more than 50 exhibitors including horticultural societies, garden clubs and environmental organizations, in addition to a floral design competition and show. This one-day garden extravaganza includes: • free talks and demonstrations • gently-used gardening book sale • gardening advice from Toronto Master Gardeners • silent auction

Seedy Saturday is a community event where gardeners share their heirloom seeds and help to preserve our horticultural heritage. Bring your extra, open-pollinated or heirloom seeds on February 22 and discover something new! Drop your seeds off at the swap and then browse the seed exchange tables to see what others have brought. Also, visit local seed growers and vendors to stock up for this year’s garden, and learn about seed saving


Spring 2020

from seed conservation organizations. It’s a great opportunity to discover varieties that are not available commercially. Free Admission $2 donation appreciated (Those who donate will be entered into free hourly draws.) Saturday, February 22 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Photos Courtesy of West Coast Seeds

Get the Jump on Spring & Seedy Saturday


TBG Lecture Series • Gardens Around the World • This long-running lecture series highlights local and international experts in gardening, conservation, nature and more! Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and lectures start at 7:30 p.m. Lectures are FREE for TBG Members; members may bring a friend for $10; public $15; students (with ID) $12.

Gardens of Northern Italy

Donna Fenice • Thursday, Feb. 13

With stunning photos and enchanting stories, Donna Fenice will take us on a tour of northern Italy’s most fascinating gardens in the Lake District and the lush vineyards of Veneto. These gardens reveal a huge range of styles from a baroque extravaganza on Lake Maggiore to a romantic English garden on Lake Como to a formal Renaissance garden in Verona to the Versaillesinspired garden of a Venetian Doge. Donna lived in Italy for several years, exploring Tuscany and beyond from her home in Florence. Upon returning to Toronto she taught Italian at York University. Now, when not visiting the gardens of Italy and France, she writes a blog called Loving Italy’s Gardens, leads tours at the TBG and presents to diverse groups on the gardens she has visited. Donna has also developed a six-week language course focused on everyday encounters in the language of la dolce vita.

Steppe Plants for the Rock Garden Mike Bone • Thursday, March 5

The steppe ecosystems are home to thousands of hearty, drought-resistant plants, many of which are uniquely suited to rock and crevice gardens. There are four great steppe regions on our planet, including the North American Steppe covering parts of central United States, western Canada and northern Mexico. The Denver Botanic Gardens (DBG), situated in the heart of this region, is a hub for the study and cultivation of steppe plants. In his lecture, Mike Bone, curator of steppe collections at DBG, will describe the unique steppe environment and demonstrate why steppe plants are perfectly-suited for rock gardens. He looks forward to taking you on a journey around the world’s great steppe regions.

Mike has explored and collected seed in steppes – which are dry, grassy plains occurring in temperate climates – around the world including Asia, southern Africa and the American West. He oversees DBG’s Steppe Garden, trial gardens, plant breeding program, and the propagation of wild-collected material. He has contributed to six books published through the Denver Botanic Gardens, including Steppes: The Plants and Ecology of the World’s Semi-arid Regions.

The Schachen: A Secret Garden in the Bavarian Alps

Jenny Wainwright-Klein • Thursday, April 23

In 1901, the Munich Botanic Garden created The Schachen Alpine Garden. Located in the Wetterstein Mountains, 1,850 metres above sea level, the garden is open for a mere four months of the year and is accessible by foot only, after a three-to-four-hour hike. Visitors claim that sore feet and achy knees are a small price to pay for the floristic splendour of the garden. The Schachen Alpine Garden contains a diverse and ever-growing collection of alpine plants from around the world. Specimens come from Europe, the Carpathians, the Caucasus, Himalayas, the Arctic and North America, South Africa, New Zealand and Patagonia. The region’s cool, moist summers are particularly suited for the cultivation of plants from the summer monsoon areas of the Himalayas, with Meconopsis and Primula plants being the main attractions for visitors in July. Jenny Wainwright-Klein, supervisor of the Schachen Alpine Garden and the alpine propagation unit has worked at the garden for 26 years. She grew up in the Zambian Copper Belt in Africa, qualified as a horticulturist in Cape Town, South Africa. She worked at the Royal Botanic Garden Kew where she met her husband and moved with him to Germany in 1990.

AGM Save the Date: The TBG’s Annual General Meeting will be held on Thursday, April 30.


Spring 2020


Derek W Welsh



I.S.A. Certified Arborist #ON-0129A

GARDEN TOURS with Margaret Dailey-Plouffe. Tours that exceed your expectations. GARDEN Tours For 2020: Philadelphia Flower Show (March); Victoria/ Vancouver Is. (April); Newport, RI – sold out!; QUEBEC Garden tour (July); Buffalo Garden Festival (July); Poland (August); Frank Lloyd Wright/Chicago & Wisconsin (August); FLW Fallingwater (September); PLUS Newfoundland; Agawa Canyon; Lake Erie Musical Tour; International Tours to: Ireland; Sicily/Amalfi Coast; Croatia; Contact Margaret at 416-746-7199 OR



Make use of vertical space in your garden with a 6-foot obelisk. Made in Toronto exclusively for the Toronto Botanical Garden, these obelisks are superb structures for showcasing and supporting vines and vegetables. Black, powder-coated steel ensures that these towers remain rust-resistant and durable for many years to come. Available throughout the year at the Garden Shop, $99


GARDENING HELP NEEDED Mainly weeding in flower beds and trimming of iris leaves and small shrubs. Location: Lawrence and Pharmacy. Tel 416-757-8214. For salary and details, please call Ms. L. Liivamagi from 3 to 10 p.m.

Contact 416.564.9450 /JoseeCoutureTorontoRealEstate

Two FREE garden events you won’t want to miss

$2 donation appreciated Those who donate will be entered in free prize draws, 1 every hour!

Saturday, February 22, 2020 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

This one-day garden extravaganza includes:

Get the jump on spring TBG’s annual Horticultural Open House with 50+ exhibitors including horticultural societies, garden clubs and environmental

FREE ADMISSION Free Parking For TBG Members

Presented in partnership with

• • • •

Free talks and demonstrations Gently-used gardening book sale Gardening advice from Toronto Master Gardeners Café and Coffee Bar

competition and show.

Bring your open-pollinated and heirloom seeds to swap with other gardeners. Leftover seeds will be added to the TBG Seed Library. Seeds will also be available for purchase from local seed vendors.

Toronto Botanical Garden 777 Lawrence Avenue East Toronto, ON M3C 1P2


@TBG_Canada TorontoBotanicalGarden

Q & A with Marc & Arlene

Urban Farming Growing their own food led couple to teach others how By G eorgie K ennedy


oronto urban agriculture legends Arlene Hazzan Green and Marc Green were not always self-sufficient gardeners. She was a film director and he a location scout living the high life. In their first house, Marc imagined a green lawn for their dog but no grass would grow in the tiny, shady, trampled yard. They removed the topsoil, added clumpy clay earth and more or less managed to grow carrots and a few other veggies with their 5-year-old son. After reading about square foot gardening, they sourced cedar fence posts, which Marc used to create three raised beds. They filled them with living soil, set about cultivating their own food and eventually formed the Backyard Urban Farm Company (BUFCO). Arlene and Marc’s real impetus for becoming more self-reliant was a shift in values. Watching The End of Suburbia, a Canadian documentary about dependence on oil and the gloomy outlook for our continued consumptive lifestyle, made them realize they wanted to be part of a solution. “We read everything on the topics of climate change and sustainability,” says Marc. “Gardening together had given us a sense of independence and hope that we wanted to spread to others.” Marc’s initial concept was simply to ask friends and associates if he could build garden beds for them but Arlene envisioned a revitalized community through installing, maintaining, growing

and teaching about vegetable gardening. “The first year, 2009, we had 11 clients, the next 23 and now we have a staff of three fulltime and 11 seasonal workers,” said Arlene. They grow and experiment with new methods in their own yard and that of a neighbour. And, last summer they rented two Red Star chickens. “The Girls” produced two eggs and plenty of valuable manure daily. BUFCO is more than a business; it’s a passion. They are on a mission to inspire, educate and enable urbanites to grow their own food and help them reconnect with nature. The list of organizations where Arlene and Marc teach, lecture and demonstrate is a long one: from daycares and schools to colleges and condominiums and speaking engagements at Richters Herbs and The Guelph Organic Conference. Future plans include establishing a not-for-profit organization to help groups establish and maintain their own community gardens. For the past five years they have volunteered at a community garden in Parkdale and they have been members of Toronto Urban Growers, a network to scale up urban agriculture in the city for the past decade. Marc and Arlene are well-known at the Toronto Botanical Garden. They were regular spring vendors at the weekly farmers market, and with Paul Zammit, former Nancy Eaton Director of Horticulture, they installed a raised garden bed in the teaching garden. They also offer regular classes on a number of vegetable gardening topics in the TBG’s


spring 2020

What are the benefits of growing your own organic, non-GMO produce? • Organic veggies, herbs, and fruit may deliver greater nutritional value. • The fresh taste is superior to store-bought. • The soil ecosystem is healthy, not poisoned with pesticides and synthetic chemicals. • Veggie plants create diversity and attract pollinators. • A local, simple way of life is economical. • It creates community and promotes learning. • It contributes to a sustainable ecosystem. Less plastic, less oil. • It’s the way of the future as we become more urbanized. Any favourite crops? • Marc – cherry tomatoes • Arlene – okra (Tip: they are not slimy when harvested small!) What keeps you busiest season by season? • Winter: Dreaming, planning, teaching, taking courses • Spring: Installation, planting • Summer: Maintenance • Fall: Harvesting, Planting, Installation • Eating all year round!

bright, open spaces where a bit of soil on the floor is not an issue. These include: February 12 to 26–Backyard Urban Farming 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., a threesession course covering the theoretical and practical tools to plan and plant your own vegetable garden. March 5, Start Vegetable Seeds Indoors 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Register for these courses at

ADULT EDUCATION at TORONTO BOTANICAL GARDEN Winter/Spring Class Registration Now Open

For more information and to register, visit our website at:

Toronto Botanical Garden is a great place to learn about nature, food, floral and garden design, gardening, art, and more. Please note: In an effort to reduce its carbon footprint, TBG will present adult program information online only. There will be no printed program guide.

Master Gardeners offer Birds of a Feather Crafts for Kids at Canada Blooms

In keeping with this year’s Canada Blooms theme Birds of a Feather, Master Gardeners of Ontario will offer four bird-related children’s workshops at this year’s show from March 13 to 22 at the Enercare Centre, Exhibition Place. Morning and afternoon workshops at Booth #30 on March 16, 17, 18 and 19 include, making: • Bird nests using natural materials • Pinecone bird feeders to hang on balconies, trees, shrubs, etc.



Image: Marie-Lan Nguyen

Millennium Lilac Trail Jazz in the Lilac Room Marketplace Victorian Tea

Kids on Main Street Photography Show Horticultural Vendors Fundraising Luncheon


Spring 2020

• •

Owls using pinecones, acorn cups and leaves “Chia” birds using stockings, soil, feathers and grass seed.

All crafts can be taken home. The workshops, intended for children from 5 to 10, are free as is admission to CB for kids under 12. Two Master Gardeners will be available for each workshop to educate, answer questions and assist the children.

American Goldfinch

Birds of the Ravine and Beyond Toronto Botanical Garden & Wilket Creek Ravine are great places for spotting our feathered friends, says Veronica Sliva. Photography by Walter Sliva


f you stroll through the Toronto Botanical Garden past the café and the barn and then take the stone steps down into the ravine, you will find yourself in an amazing park with mature stands of eastern hemlock, sugar maple, red oak, Manitoba maple, white pine, white cedar and American beech. In springtime the forest floor is carpeted with trilliums, dogtooth violets and hepatica. Bog-loving ferns and cattails thrive in the lowlying marshy areas along Wilket Creek. The diversity of habitat in this ravine offers shelter and foraging opportunities for migratory and year-round resident birds. Birding is Good for You!

• Observing birds gets us outdoors, close to nature where we can breathe fresh air. • Birding takes patience, requiring us to slow down, to enjoy a little quiet reflection and to de-stress. • A moderately paced walk is good for cardiovascular health. • You may improve your reflexes. You need to be quick to catch a glimpse of that elusive bird! • It’s a low-cost activity. Besides binoculars, no special equipment is required. • You don’t have to ‘go it alone’. There are local birding groups that organize bird watching outings. [See Wild About Birds on page 14.]

Good for your physical and mental well being, birding offers social benefits, too.


Spring 2020

Brown Creeper

Blue jay

Birds of the Ravine Depending on their foraging and nesting habits, the various levels of vegetation in the ravine attract different types of birds. Nearby, the Toronto Botanical Garden offers a diverse

variety of plants too and attracts many birds, especially during the spring migration (late April to mid May). Here’s an overview of some of the more commonly seen birds in the area:

Look Up into the Trees M igrato r y B i rd s J u st Pa ss i n g Th rou g h

Yea r-Roun d Res id en ts

Baltimore Oriole

American Robin

Brown Creeper

American Goldfinch


Blue Jay

Eastern Wood Peewee

Carolina Wren

Great Crested Flycatcher


House Wren

House Finch

Indigo Bunting

House Sparrow


Mourning Dove

Northern Oriole

Northern Cardinal

Pileated Woodpecker

Nuthatches: White and Red Breasted

Pine Siskin

Purple Finch

Red Eyed Vireo


Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Woodpeckers (Downy, Hairy & Red-Bellied)

Scarlet Tanager Rose Breasted Grosbeak Warblers (e.g. Blackburnian Warbler) Wood Thrush

On the Forest Floor Brown Thrasher

Wrens: House and Winter

Juncos in late fall and winter Thrushes: (Wood, Hermit) White-throated Sparrows

I n a n d A l o n g the Creek a nd in B og g y Area s Black Crowned Night Heron Common Yellowthroat Warbler Ducks Great Blue Heron Herring Gull Red Winged-Blackbird Spotted Sandpiper Tree Swallows

Mallard Ducks

Top Toronto Birding Hotspots Ruby-throated Hummingbird

• Toronto Botanical Garden and Wilket Creek Ravine • Tommy Thompson Park • Toronto Islands • Colonel Samuel Smith Park

Wild about Birds?

• Ashbridge’s Bay Park • High Park • Sunnyside Beach • Humber Bay Park • Rosetta McClain Gardens • Downsview Park

Magazines and books:

Birder Murder Mysteries

If you’re interested in both birds and mysteries, treat yourself to the series of ‘birder murder mysteries’ by Canadian author Steve Burrows. To date, he has published six books, centring around his hero (or perhaps anti-hero) Domenic England. Jejeune seems to be a much more accomplished bird-watcher than he is a policeman. However, as in all good mysteries, the situation always gets sorted out in the end. Burrows’ books, in order (if you care about that sort of thing) are:

1. Chirp, Chickadee, Owl 2. National Geographic Backyard Books 3. Pocket Birds of Canada 4. Ontario Birds 5. Peterson Field Guide to Birds 6. Birds of Toronto, distributed at Toronto Public Libraries American Robins

Siege of Bitterns (2014) Pitying of Doves (2015) Cast of Falcons (2016) Shimmer of Hummingbirds (2017) Tiding of Magpies (2018) Dance of Cranes (2018)

Photo: xxxxx xxxxxxx


Want to learn more about them, do more for them, and see more of them? Here are links to places, websites, organizations, and sources of information compiled by Georgie Kennedy. • Canadian Wildlife Federation. Certify your garden as a wildlife-friendly habitat. gardening-for-wildlife/action/get-certified/ • FLAP Canada. Make your home and garden safe for birds. • Toronto Field Naturalists: 140+ annual guided walks, monthly lectures, projects. • Toronto Ornithological Club: meetings, outings, information. • Ontario Field Ornithologists: field trips, e-Bird registry. • Bird Watching HQ: live cams, movie lists, blog, how-tos. • Bird Studies Canada: 45 minute distance learning programs for students K to 12. • National Audubon Society: newsletters, events, curated podcast list, movie list, annual Great Backyard Bird Count. (a breathtaking website) • Cornell Lab of Ornithology: visitor center, education, bird identification. • Royal Ontario Museum Gallery of Birds: walk under more than 100 specimens, pull out drawers of eggs, wings, nests, footprints… galleries/galleries/natural-history/gallery-of-birds • High Park Nature: links to even more bird pages!



Spring 2020

Downy Woodpecker

Bring Back the Birds Thursday, March 26, 7 to 8:30 p.m. Public $24.86; Members $20.34 The sights and sounds of birds provide a happy diversion in our busy lives. Learn how to attract feathered friends to your garden and provide them with the essentials of life through careful plant choice, design and maintenance. Students will go home with native plant seeds and educational resources.


Blackburnian Warbler Baltimore Oriole

Speaking of birds…

Our feathered friends feature very prominently in the Wychwood area of Toronto – the location of our 2020 garden tour - Mark’s Choice Through the Garden Gate. Saturday & Sunday, June 6 & 7. Residents all talk about the flock of cardinals who wake them in the wee hours of spring, calling to each other throughout the area. They’re followed by the blue jays, who are no less noisy, but who seem to keep more sensible hours. Nevertheless, local gardens are full of pollinator plants and fruit trees; owners regularly see warblers, nuthatches, woodpeckers, sparrows, blue jays, thrushes, cardinals, hummingbirds and indigo buntings. But the birds causing the most comment are the red-tailed hawks who have taken up residence in the area. Just before they arrive, says a homeowner, “there’s a sudden hush; small animals scuttling to find a hiding place and others who are frozen in place, hoping to avoid detection.” C.G.


Spring 2020

Thrush in cherry blossoms

For Insect Eaters

Design Your Garden to Attract Birds


ou can attract birds to your garden with a little thoughtful planning. Birds need food, shelter and water and if you offer it to them, your habitat can attract a variety of different species. Plants for Food

Depending on the species, birds eat seeds, berries, fruit, nectar and insects. Some like to forage at ground level, while others are found higher up in shrubs and trees. A birdfriendly landscape simulates the natural environment and is planted in layers with a variety of plants that grow to different heights. Consider planting the following for a bird friendly habitat: Deciduous Trees

Fruiting plants are used by year-round residents and migratory birds preparing for winter. Some fruit (for example, crab apples) stays on the trees in winter to provide much needed sustenance when little else is available.

• Mulberries produce berries in July and August. They attract many species including indigo buntings, scarlet tanagers, mockingbirds and flycatchers. • Dogwoods are covered with white, pink, or red flowers in spring with red fruit from August to November. • Crab apples that remain on the trees in winter attract non migratory birds. Choose a small fruiting cultivar for birds to pick at easily. • Serviceberries have masses of white or pinkish flowers in spring. The fruit appears in the summer and doesn’t last long before it is devoured, especially by American robins. Conifers

• Spruce, fir and pine have seed-filled cones that appeal to nuthatches, finches, grosbeaks, chickadees and other seed-eating birds. • Junipers and yews have berry-like cones that attract robins, cedar waxwings and sparrows.

• Yellow-bellied sapsuckers peck into conifers to get at the sugary sap that seeps out. Shrubs and Vines

• Staghorn sumac has clusters of hairy red fruit that persist into winter and are eaten by many bird species. • Viburnum species have white flowers in the spring. The berries that follow attract robins, bluebirds, thrushes, catbirds, cardinals, finches, waxwings and others. • Wild grapes are a favourite of many birds. • Virginia creeper produces small blueberries in the fall. Annuals and Perennials

• Nectar-producing plants such as fuchsia, monarda, penstemon and salvia attract hummingbirds and orioles. • Grasses, ornamental and native, provide seeds in fall. • Oak, hickory, buckeyes, chestnuts and walnuts produce nuts and acorns that are eaten by birds in fall and winter.

Did you know that the TBG is certified by the Canadian Wildlife Federation as a “Wildlife-friendly Habitat”? Homeowners can become certified too. Find out more at


Spring 2020

• Chickadees, woodpeckers, and nuthatches forage for insects and are attracted to dead and dying trees. Insects that tunnel under the bark become an important food source. A dead tree isn’t a bad thing in a garden! If you don’t have a dead tree in your yard, consider creating a brush pile in an out-of-the-way corner. Give Them Shelter

Densely planted areas offer shelter and safety from harsh weather as well as predators (such as marauding cats and hawks). A cedar hedge is a safe haven for birds. Provide Water

A water feature of any size is a magnet for birds. It should be shallow with sloping sides to make for easy access. Situating the birdbath in an open area allows birds to see potential danger lurking. Resist the Urge to be a Neatnik

• A bird-friendly landscape isn’t perfectly manicured. Avoid clearing away seed heads and spent foliage in the fall. In winter when little else is available, the birds will appreciate the dining opportunities. • A dead tree attracts woodpeckers or nuthatches who make their nests in cavities. Many species seek shelter from bad weather inside these hollowed out trees. Reduce or Eliminate your Lawn

Lawns have little value to birds or other wildlife, and they require more energy for mowing, applying fertilizers and watering.

Martha Flaherty Cultural Ambassador

Š Kristian Bogner, Dennis Minty, Danny Catt, Scott Forsyth

Experience the Unexpected Be a part of the unexpected. Experience the thrill of a smallship expedition. Explore the Canadian Arctic and Greenland together with Arctic explorers, Inuit guides, scientists, and artists. Learn about climate change and marine wildlife. Meet Inuit who manage to thrive in one of the most remote places on Earth. Expedition travel with Adventure Canada is not your typical vacation. It is about leaving behind the hustle of everyday life. Connect with like-minded people. Learn from local guides about different cultures. Explore the unknown path—it will bring you delight in an unexpected way.


1.800.363.7566 High Arctic Explorer . Northwest Passage . Heart of the Arctic Antarctica

Canadian-owned and operated since 1987 Adventure Canada, 55 Woodlawn Ave, Mississauga, ON L5G 3K7 Canada, TICO Reg# 4001400

Bodnant Garden

Garden Travel at its Best This is the time of year that many of us begin perusing both seed catalogs and travel brochures. If you’re looking for seeds, come to this year’s Get the Jump on Spring & Seedy Saturday, Feb. 22, where you can swap or buy a mouth-watering variety of seeds. If travel is tempting you, look no farther than the TBG website. This year we’ve planned two trips, led by horticulturist and author Marjorie Mason along with Paul Zammit, former Nancy Eaton Director of Horticulture. “A lively pace to amazing places, these tours are memorable life experiences,” says enthusiastic traveller Liz Kloze. “Paul and Marjorie took us on a delightful journey to gardens of renown, unlocked the gate to great private gardens and left us awe-struck by magnificent sites we have only read about. I am already booked on their next adventure!” The highlight of the England & Wales tour is, to my mind, a full day spent at the Chelsea Flower Show. However, on a trip involving a plethora of gardens, castles, National Trust properties and historical sites, it’s pretty tough to pick one over

another, especially if they’re coupled with stays at four-or five-star hotels and travel by luxury coach. The September tour features some of Ireland’s best public and private gardens as well as stops at some fascinating places, including Bushmills Distillery, a cooking class and The Titanic Experience. Having trouble deciding between the two? Have a look at both itineraries: England & Wales May 19 through 31:

Arrival in London and a stay at the H10 Waterloo Hotel, near The Houses of Parliament, Big Ben and The London Eye, all of which can be seen from the hotel’s Sky Bar. You’ll visit: • Wisley – one of the Royal Horticultural Society’s (RHS) preeminent gardens; • Chelsea Flower Show (see the recipe for the garden’s famous Pimm’s Cup). Then it’s off to The Abbey Hotel in Bath, where you’ll relax in your beautifully decorated room after having a walking tour of the city, plus: • A visit to 5,000-year-old Stonehenge, in Wiltshire, a World Heritage Site; • A look at Lacock Abbey and the National


Spring 2020

Trust village where scenes from the movie Downtown Abbey were filmed; • A stop at the romantic Iford Manor Gardens, an Italianate garden designed by Arts & Crafts designer Harold Peto. You’ll travel to Wales and stay at Lake Country House & Spa while seeing: • Dyffryn Gardens with more than 55 acres of Edwardian Gardens, including a large glass house and an astounding collection of statuary. • The National Botanical Garden of Wales which has 6,000 varieties of plants; • Aberglasney Gardens – mentioned in history books beginning about 1541; • The Medieval Powys Castle & its Italianate and French-style gardens; • The lovely Portmeirion Village, where you’ll explore nurseries, gardens (including Bodnant), and local sights. On your return to England, you’ll stay at the Mercure Hotel, Liverpool, and have dinner in the awe-inspiring Liverpool Cathedral ! Then you’ll visit: • Chatsworth House and Gardens – the home for 16 generations of the Dukes and Duchesses of Devonshire. You’ll return home from London.

Photo: Paul Zammit

Chase away those winter blues with thoughts of English, Welsh and Irish gardens, says Carol Gardner

You’ll see: • Belleek Pottery & Salthill Gardens. Depart for the stunning five-star boutique hotel, g Hotel, Galway, designed by Philip Treacy, frequent milliner to the British Royal Family. • Brigit’s Garden & Celtic Heritage Centre where a guided tour will explain Celtic symbolism. Leave Galway to explore; • The ‘lunar landscape’ of The Burren, a diverse ecosystem, and The Doman, an ancient burial site; • The Caherconnell Stone Fort, an ancient fort where you’ll enjoy a sheepdog demo. It’s then lunch in Limerick and on to the riverside four-star River Lee Hotel in Cork. You’ll tour: • Blarney Castle, home of the Blarney Stone, ‘the stone of eloquence.’ Rumour has it that once you kiss the stone, you’ll never again be at a loss for words; • Ballymaloe Gardens, with an optional cooking class at Ballymaloe cooking school. • Lismore Castle and Gardens in Waterford, a gothic-style castle once owned by Sir Walter Raleigh, among other historical characters;

• Patthana Garden, a gorgeous courtyard garden. Check in at the four-star Glenview Hotel in Wicklow and spend: • The morning in Hunting Brook Gardens, one of Ireland’s largest private plant collections, owned by noted horticulturist Jimi Blake. In the afternoon, you’ll visit his sister June’s garden; Time in the Powerscourt Gardens, recently voted # three in the world’s Top Ten Gardens by National Geographic. On to five-star boutique Dylan Hotel in the middle of Dublin to see: • Horticulturist and TV presenter Helen Dillon’s new seaside garden in Monkstown; • Glasnevin Botanic Garden, famous for its historically restored glass houses; • Dublin, with a free day to explore, completed by an Irish Dinner with entertainment. You’ll return home from Dublin. For complete travel details, check out our website at explore/travel-explore/gardens-tours-withmason-and-zammit/ Proceeds support the TBG.

Ireland Sept.8 through 20

Our September tour to Ireland is no less impressive. Here are the highlights: Arrive in Dublin and stay there overnight. The next day, proceed to the five-star Grand Central Hotel, Belfast with its stunning Art Deco or Victorian rooms. Situated in the Cathedral Quarter, the hotel is close to a cornucopia of attractions. You’ll visit: • Rowallane Gardens – a National Trust property that is a riot of colours in the fall; • Glenarm Gardens – with its magnificent walled gardens; • Bushmills Distillery (because man, or woman, cannot live by gardens alone) and the UNESCO World Heritage site – Giant’s Causeway – with more than 40,000 pillars dating back 60,000 years; • The award-winning Titanic experience in Belfast where you’ll immerse yourself in nine interactive galleries and explore the world’s last remaining White Star vessel; • The recently restored neoclassical Mount Stewart House and its garden, voted as one of the top ten gardens of the world. Depart for Donegal for a one-night stay at the historic, five-star Lough Eske Castle.

Make It! Minty, Fruity and Refreshing! If you’re not going to the Chelsea Flower Show this year, you can still pretend. Make yourself a Pimm’s Cup – the signature drink of the show – sit in your garden (or by the fire!) and dream of garden exploits to come.

P i m m ’ s C up 1 part Pimm’s No. 1 (a gin-based drink) 2 parts (either) lemon-lime soda, sparkling lemonade or ginger ale A few pieces of sliced orange, sliced cucumber and sliced strawberries A few mint leaves for garnish (if desired) Just throw the first three ingredients into a glassful of ice, mix, garnish and enjoy!


Spring 2020

moments Garden Tourism Award Winner Harry Jongerden, Toronto Botanical Garden’s Garden Director was awarded the Garden Person of the Year Award at the Canadian Garden Tourism Awards hosted in Victoria, BC in November 2019. This award recognizes Harry’s career and contributions to the botanical garden industry within his leadership roles at the Royal Botanical Gardens, VanDusen Botanical Garden and his recent achievements at the Toronto Botanical Garden. The Garden Tourism Awards are presented to organizations and individuals who have distinguished themselves in the development and promotion of garden experiences as tourism attractions and motivators. The awards are supported by the Canadian Garden Council, the American Public Garden Association and the Mexican Association of Botanical Gardens and sponsored by the Canadian Nursery Landscape Association.

David McIsaac joins in the fun at the TBG Blossom Party with Ann Kaplan and Deirdre Kelly.

people, places & plants Goings On at the TBG

Record Invasive Removal Congratulations to Tuesday volunteers Kitman Lee and Elizabeth Brough who worked with other volunteers to collect and remove some 155 pounds of invasive plants, mainly dog-strangling vine and mustard garlic, from the TBG gardens. They will now be going onto the ravine and Edwards Gardens, with permission. “Our goal is to remove these invasives before they can go to seed or spread,” says Paul Zammit, former Director of Horticulture. “We bag, solarise and discard the invasives and are exploring further ways of disposing of them.” The TBG has 40 plus volunteers each doing a minimum of one four-hour shift per week from April until the end of October. “These gardens wouldn’t be what they are without people investing in their community. The volunteers are what I think of when I look at the garden,” says Paul.


spring 2020

All the Dirt The Future is Bright

When I started we had 30 email addresses on file. Now we have more than 15,000. M eet J enny R h o d eni z e r Director of Marketing and Communications: collector of recipes, antiques and friends.


TBG’s new CEO, David McIsaac, has high hopes for the Garden in 2020, after the significant progress that was made in 2019. David was “very happy with the energy in the room at our Members’ event following the Holiday Market. I really believe we have turned the corner and there are many encouraging things happening at TBG, and more to come.” Acknowledging that it has been a tough year for staff, the Board, members, donors and volunteers, as TBG had a substantial financial debt to overcome from 2018, he has been heartened by the amount of support from all of the above. “Everybody cares so much. They have been concerned, wanting to find out what they can do to help and make things better. Through the tremendous support of our donors, TBG was able to clear its deficit and is now on a stronger financial footing moving into 2020. “You can never have too much communication” David says. It’s a conclusion he has come to as a result of some of his early interactions with members and volunteers. David is looking forward to spending more time meeting and interacting with TBG members, donors and volunteers. “We are trying to do better with communicating and create more opportunities and touch points to interact and share with members and volunteers.” David joined TBG as Interim Chief Administration Officer in mid-April, and was appointed CEO at the beginning of September. He brings a wealth of leadership, financial and operational experience in the corporate and not-forprofit sectors to the job. He has held senior leadership roles as the CFO at TransUnion Canada and Northern Trust Canada, and senior finance positions at Aviva, Manulife, CIBC and RBC. David has also held various community leadership roles with several not-forprofit organizations including Casey House, the Arthritis Society, the Victorian Order of Nurses, Prostate Cancer Canada and Financial Executives International (FEI) Canada.

enny Rhodenizer has seen a lot of changes in her 17 years at the TBG. As one of the longest serving employees, she was here for the expansion of the building and surrounding gardens, the official name change from Civic Garden Centre to Toronto Botanical Garden and numerous marketing campaigns. As a department of one for many years, she has worked with staff in every department doing marketing, communications and overseeing special events. Her role is to promote awareness of the TBG and to maintain a consistent message aligned with TBG’s mission which is to “connect people to plants, and to inspire us to live in harmony with nature.” Jenny’s mandate includes fundraising events such as the annual Gala in the Garden and Mark’s Choice Through The Garden Gate tour, both in June. Most communication from Jenny’s office is now virtual, “except for our valued Trellis magazine.” The TBG website has been redesigned three times during her tenure and she puts out the online GARDEN ENEWS weekly or biweekly depending on the season. “When I started we had 30 email addresses on file. Now we have more than 15,000,” she says.

TBG has no entrance fee, and a limited marketing budget, so promoting presents a challenge that requires creativity and strategic partnerships. Jenny explained that partnering with other organizations helps position the gardens with other cultural attractions, strengthening the cachet of both. Some of the like-minded brands the TBG has recently partnered with include Toronto Life magazine, Fleurs de Villes and the CF Shops at Don Mills. Jenny serves on the executive of the Toronto Attractions Council whose members are encouraged to partner up for cross-promotional activities. Best aspect of her job, she says, is the “constant change within a stable supportive community.” On a Personal Note: Jenny loves the Piet Oudolf entry garden at the TBG. Purple is her favourite colour. Her daughter is named Violet. Her hobby is “eating,” she researches and reviews restaurants with foodie friends and her home garden is devoted to veggies and herbs for cooking. Jenny and her husband Mike enjoy travelling. “He loves craft beer and I love gardens so a destination that has both is the perfect one for us,” she says. –Georgie Kennedy


Restoring the Wild at TBG

Ecologist Katherine Baird enhances TBG’s focus on the ravine

W TBGKids offers two new March Break Nature Camps March Break with TBGKids is fun, engaging and educational. Each day of the March Break week offers a different nature-themed camp with a mix of indoor and outdoor activities including games, crafts, stories, hikes and more. This year, our March Break Camp program will feature two brand new camps for kids aged 5 to 8 — Feathery Friends and Green Heroes. It’s easy to get excited about birds because they are musical, colourful and magical creatures with flying powers! Our garden and the neighbouring Wilket Creek invite a great diversity of birds, which makes the TBG an ideal spot for meeting and getting to know them. At Feathery Friends Camp, TBGKids will gear up with binoculars and ID sheets to find residing songbirds, waterfowl and raptors. The Green Heroes Camp has been designed to inspire children to connect with nature and also to become stewards of the land. Campers will tap into nature through outdoor play and exploration. Then, inside our cozy, children’s nature classroom, they will train to become Green Heroes by creating recycled art, playing eco-games, and sharing ideas for green living. To learn more about our March Break Camps, go to learn/kids/march-break-nature-camps/ –Broti Kar

ith TBG’s expansion comes the opportunity to reimagine how the natural areas of Wilket Creek ravine relate to the broader context of the garden and Toronto’s ravine systems. In order to enhance its focus on the ravine, TBG has hired ecologist Katherine Baird, made possible through an Ontario Trillium Foundation Seed Grant. “Wilket Creek ravine is an important ecological feature within Toronto. TBG’s expanded footprint will include a portion of the Wilket Creek Forest Environmentally Significant Area (ESA). This is a mature forest which includes rare habitats for plants and wildlife uncommon to Toronto such as white oaks, scarlet tanagers and snapping turtles,” says Katherine. Despite the ecological significance of the ravine, Wilket Creek faces a number of human pressures common to urban environments. These range from soil compaction and erosion, to invasive species. The TBG Master Plan highlights the great potential of


Spring 2020

the ravine to be restored to a more natural state. It will become the Wild portion of the new “City, Country, Wild” garden. The wooded ravine slopes represent an opportunity to reduce human impacts and facilitate native plant regeneration. Removal of invasive species like Norway maple and dogstrangling vine will play an important role in ensuring native species have a fighting chance. Targeting the creek’s floodplain, currently manicured lawn and paving, for native riparian restoration will offer enhanced ecological services like flood control and wildlife habitat. Katherine has been expanding on existing ravine work, conducting comprehensive field inventories, literature reviews and consultations. Her work will define baseline conditions for ecological quality and result in a multi-year restoration plan for the ravine. Restoration will require long-term management and monitoring, and presents new opportunities for cross-organizational collaboration and community engagement. Through partnerships with the City, Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) and other groups and stakeholders, TBG will finally be able to give the ravine the attention and care it deserves! To learn more about the project or get involved, contact Katherine Baird at




Brian Bixley, Mark Cullen, Camilla Dalglish, Sondra Gotlieb, Marjorie Harris, Lorraine Johnson, Michele Landsberg, Susan Macauley, Helen Skinner

CHIEF Executive OFFICER David McIsaac 416-397-1484



Garden Director Harry Jongerden 416-397-1346

President: Gino Scapillati; Vice President: Cynthia Webb; Members: Penny Richards, Barb Yager, Denis Flanagan, Alexandra Risen, Sara D’Elia, Liz Esson, Catherine Meade, Wendy Thompson, Gordon Ashworth; Ex Officio: Christina Iacovino, Joy Gray-Donald (Garden Club), Ingrid Smith (Milne House), Nicole Leaper (Toronto Master Gardeners).

About The Toronto Botanical Garden The Toronto Botanical Garden (TBG) is a volunteer-based, charitable organization that raises more than 95 per cent of its operating funds through membership, facility rentals, retail operations, program fees and donations. The organization relies on its partnership with the City of Toronto and on the generosity and financial commitment of individuals, foundations and corporations to support the many beneficial services we provide to the community. Our mission: Toronto Botanical Garden connects people to plants, inspiring us to live in harmony with nature. Our vision: Toronto Botanical Garden will be renowned for its display of nature’s beauty and as a dynamic hub for plant-centred learning, conservation and research.


Receive the latest horticultural news and information on events, workshops, lectures and other horticultural happenings. Free registration at

GENERAL HOURS AND ADMISSION Gardens: Free admission, dawn to dusk Parking: $2.50 PER HOUR, Members & TBG Volunteers, FREE Administrative Offices: Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Weston Family Library: Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday & Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. Open on TBG Lecture nights Garden Shop: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily Master Gardeners: Visit for information and to Ask A Master Gardener; Info Line 416-397-1357

Adult Education 416-397-1362 Children’s Programs & Summer Camps 416-397-5209 Development 416-397-1372 Facility Rentals 416-397-1349 Garden Shop 416-397-1357 Gardening Help Line Toronto Master Gardeners 416-397-1345 Group Tours 416-397-4145 Horticulture 416-397-1358 Marketing & Communications 416-397-1351 Membership 416-397-1483 School Visits 416-397-1288 Special Events 416-397-1321 Trellis Magazine Volunteer Services 416-397-4145 Weston Family Library 416-397-1343


Design June Anderson



Advertising 416-397-4145 Trellis is published as a members’ newsletter by the Toronto Botanical Garden at Edwards Gardens 777 Lawrence Avenue East, Toronto, Ontario, M3C 1P2, 416-397-1341 Trellis welcomes queries for story ideas, which should be submitted to the editor for consideration by the Trellis Committee at least four months in advance of publication dates. Opinions expressed in Trellis do not necessarily reflect those of the TBG. Submissions may be edited for style and clarity. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part is prohibited without written permission. Charitable registration number 119227486RR0001 Canada Publications Mail Product Sales Agreement #40013928 ISSN 0380-1470

777 Lawrence Avenue East, Toronto, Ontario M3C 1P2, Canada 416-397-1341; fax: 416-397-1354 • • @TBG_Canada By TTC: From Eglinton subway station take the 51, 54 or 54A bus to Lawrence Avenue East and Leslie Street. The TBG is on the southwest corner.

Find us on...

Printed by Mi5 Print + Digital

Cert no. SW-COC-002063

The Toronto Botan

The Toronto Botanical Garden inv Marjor


WALES AND THE CHELSEA FLOWER SHOW May 19 - 31, 2020 Tour Highlights:


MaDinner r j o r ini e M a s o

The Toronto Botanical Garden invites you to travel with Marjorie Mason and Paul Zammit gardens of ire you! Bodnant Gardens Crug Farm Plants Powys Castle & Gardens Welsh Botanic Gardens Dingle Nurseries & Garden

Your support of the annual Hearts & Flowers Tour Highlights: AND THEmilestone. CHELSEA FLOWER SHOW campaign allowed us WALES to reach a new Mount Stewart Gardens May 19 - May 31, 2020 Tour Highlights: Rowallane Gardens


Liverpool Cathedral Aberglasney Gardens RHS Garden, Wisley September - Septem Chelsea Flower9Show and more.


September 8 - 20, 2020Tour Highlights Mount Stewart Gardens

Glenarm Castle Gardens

Rowallane Gardens Tour Highlights: Huntingbrook (Jimi Blake’s Garden)

Bodnant Garden

Crug Farm Plant Castle Gardens Ballymaloe Mount Glenarm Stewart Gardens TBG thanks all our donors for their generosity andJune Blake’s Garden Powis Castle & Garden Cooking School Gardens Huntingbrook (Jimi Blake’s Garden) Helen Dillon’s newRowallane garden

continued support! We couldn’t do it without you.Lismore Castle Gardens Dillon’sBotanic new garden Glenarm Castle Gardens Helen Welsh Garden June Blake’s Garden Lismore Castle Gardens Huntingbrook Aberglasney Garden Together, we grow stronger. Ballymaloe Cooking School (Jimi Blake’s Garden) Giants Causeway Helen Dillon’s new garden

Giants Causeway June Blake’s Garden

RHS Garden, Wisle

Cliffs of Moher and more

Lismore Castle ChelseaGardens Flower Show and more Cliffs of Moher and more. Ballymaloe Cooking School

Paul Zamm

A portion of the proceeds from these tours Giants support the Causeway Toronto Botanical Garden.

M arj o ri e M as o n ALISON KENN Director of Development

Cliffs of Moher and more.

For more information & to register your interest For information & to register your i call directly to:more Marjorie Mason at 905-409-0215 the TBG website at the TBG webs Marjorie Mason or at check 905-409-0215 or check

gardens of ireland

Alison joined our development team in November 2019, bringing with her over 20 years of experience in fundraising, event Tour Highlights: management, stewardship, and community engagement.

September 9 - September 21, 2020

For more in

Marjorie Mason at 905-409

Mount Stewart Gardens

7007 Islington Avenue, Woodbridge, TICO registration #5001555 Wholesa | 905-264

Rowallane Gardens Glenarm Castle Gardens Huntingbrook (Jimi Blake’s Garden) June Blake’s Garden

7007 Is TICO re

Helen Dillon’s new garden Lismore Castle Gardens

ad.indd 1

Ballymaloe Cooking School Giants Causeway Cliffs of Moher and more.

7007 Islington Avenue, Woodbridge, Ontario, L4L 4T5 P au l ZTICO am mit registration #5001555 Wholesale; #501554 Retail ad.indd 1

Canada Post

Postage Paid

Publications Mail

40013928 | 905-264-0158