The Thomson House Pollinator Plantings project seeks to enrich the ecological systems already established on the Thomson House grounds by improving a presently unaddressed and weak component of them. By adding hearty pollinating plants to the ecosystem, project participants hope to increase food production and interest in the garden.
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In the summer of 2014 both a beehive and a container vegetable gardening project were initiated on the Thomson House property. Following a workshop which brought the participants of these projects together to discuss their interdependence, the group members listed of this project decided to increase the number of plants which support pollinators on the Thomson House grounds.
At present, the limited number of flowering plants on the Thomson House grounds is a critical gap in the ecological processes of pollination and food production the aforementioned projects seek to attain. By planting more flowering plants, the project team wishes to ensure that the bees in the hive have adequate nectar and pollen sources nearby, and attract other pollinators to the site, benefitting the container gardens.
These plantings will provide aesthetic and health benefits, and will enhance use of the grounds by PGSS and Montreal community members. This project seeks to enrich the ecological systems already established on the Thomson House grounds by improving a presently unaddressed and weak component of them.
The objectives of this project are to: increase the number of flowering plants desirable to pollinators and thus the yield of the container gardens and herb garden plots; increase the visual interest of the garden; and increase the knowledge and understanding amongst community members about the importance of supporting urban pollinator populations.
It has been intentionally planned that all physical materials acquired for this project are either biotic or soil components. Locations for vining plants have been chosen close to structures which can serve as supports, tools for planting and maintenance will be borrowed from other McGill parties, and documentation will be compiled and stored electronically.
Resources from the SPF will be used to purchase plant materials, all other inputs such as labour and tools are being provided voluntarily.
All visitors to and users of the Thomson House grounds will benefit from the project as it enhances the visual, tactile and aromatic interest of the grounds, in particular as it addresses portions of the grounds which are presently untended. Project participants hope to notice an increase in food production.
Bee photo by Michael Bisson
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