Keirstyn Eric of Brampton, Ont.

Keirstyn sent in a slew of gorgeous photos of the Region of Peel’s Teaching Garden at the Brampton Community Recycling Centre.

Bird house and bath for feathered friends

High bush Cranberry


Prairie Coneflower



flowery words

I saw these garden stakes over at Apartment Therapy and thought they were a hoot. Buy them here.

Debbie and Claude Pageau’s winged wonderland in Timberlea, Nova Scotia

Three years ago, Debbie and Claude revamped their boring backyard, with only a grassy lawn to its name, into a thriving garden. The couple designed their yard with their winged friends in mind. “I have a birdbath and also saucers of water for sparrows and juncos. Mourning doves love the white millet,” says Debbie. Kudos to Debbie and Claude for making the best of a clean slate!

 Phlox, white and purple echinacea and hunter roses flag a bird bath.

A female pileated woodpecker shows her baby how to search for tasty bugs.

 A painted lady butterfly settles on white hydrangea

Goldfinches, young and old, adore the niger feeder

Grackles cruise the lawn

A black duck makes a cameo appearance


I started my work at the Canadian Wildlife Federation in late March. We had an overwhelming winter in Ottawa this year with snow in the forecast nearly every day. Sometimes we’d get a couple of centimetres, sometimes a whalloping snow storm. Blech. I’d started to grow so accustomed to a mass of powdery snow stretching over the federation’s terrain that I never suspected glorious flora hid underneath it, waiting for its chance to blossom. Take a gander at what’s blooming in our garden this week!


Barren Ground Strawberry

Pasque Flower



Virginia Bluebells



Wild Geranium

Wild Ginger Flower (on the ground)

Diane’s Wildlife Haven in Walsingham, Ontario

To kick off our Certified Garden Tours, we give you Diane Salter’s garden in Walsingham, Ontario. Enjoy the view!

Diane’s pond is the perfect spot for birds and critters alike to grab a sip or take a dip

Butterfly Weed

An Eastern Foxsnake makes itself at home on Diane’s front deck

Grey Headed Coneflowers standing tall

A Yellow-Spotted Salamander sneaks by a window well

An American Lady butterfly nabs some nectar from a Purple Coneflower


The Canadian Wildlife Federation launched the Backyard Habitat Certification Program in 2000 hoping to prompt Canadians to garden responsibly. If your garden is wildlife friendly, pesticide free and filled with native plants, why not make it official and certify your garden with us? If you want to learn more about how to create an oasis for wildlife in your backyard, visit Wild About Gardening for tips on how to make your garden grow for critters and humans alike to enjoy. Go ahead. Flaunt your green thumb.

Photo by Sarah Coulber



Looking to create a monarch butterfly oasis in your backyard? Think milkweeds. This budding plant fends off hungry bugs and birds with a poison called cardiacglycosides. And since it doesn’t affect monarch butterflies and larvae, predators that try to snack on these majestic creatures become sick and learn to steer clear of them altogether.


If you live in eastern Canada, Ontario or Quebec, plant Common or Swamp Milkweed. For westerners, Green Milkweed is perfect for Manitoba’s climate, while Show or Low Milkweed grows best in Alberta. Whatever you do, avoid the use of herbicides at all costs as they wipe out milkweed and other sources of nectar for monarchs thereby threatening their food source.


Look for the first wave of monarchs to arrive in your backyard Canada in early June.

Photo by MrClean1982 on Flickr